Schwinn Hardware, a manufacturer of architectural-grade cabinet hardware for residential and commercial projects, has released its newest collection made from linseed, also known as flaxseed, the natural product used in furniture linoleum. Called Vegan by Design, the new collection incorporates linoleum into four cabinet handle designs, two of which were designed by renowned American innovator and designer Michael Graves. Though linoleum has been available as a building product for over 150 years and has been widely used by many modern architects throughout the 21st century, it has recently become more popular as a furniture design material because of its sustainable, durable, naturally antimicrobial and non-allergenic properties.
The four Vegan by Design collections are:
Schwinn 33828: A strap pull available in six colors (Ash, Iron, Black, Dark Green, Dark Blue, Burgundy) fastened with brass pins available in three finishes (matte black, polished chrome, brushed brass) for a total of 12 options. The pull is available in 160mm Center/ Center.
Schwinn 34026-0 and 34026-96: A Michael Graves design of a knob and a pull using vegan furniture linoleum and brass, available in burgundy and dark blue with post options in polished chrome or brushed brass. The pull is available in 96mm Center/ Center.
Schwinn 22447-32: A square and triangle shaped pull that comes in ash, iron, and matte black furniture linoleum paired with a matte black, polished chrome, or matte gold base.
The composition of the furniture linoleum used in the Vegan by Design collection is:
Binder: Linseed oil (24 percent); gum rosin (1 percent) from pine trees; resin (5 percent) from hydrocarbon resin oil, filler: Wood flour (27.5 percent) from wood industry waste; calcium carbonate (14 percent) from marble and limestone, Pigment (4 percent): From titanium dioxide and iron oxide-based pigments, Backing (23.5 percent): Felt paper from natural cellulose fiber Lacquer (1 percent): Water-based acrylic
The past decades have shown a continuous rise of responsible architecture and product manufacturing that has moved from small makers to larger brands who understand that they have an environmental responsibility. The trend moved from commercial buildings working towards LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification and incorporating biophilic design into their projects to homeowners also wanting to ensure that their homes include products that are non-toxic. Biophilic design, or biophilia, is the concept of connecting ourselves to the natural environment using direct nature, indirect nature, and space and place conditions.
The Schwinn Vegan by Design collection is safe for the environment, non-allergenic and naturally anti- microbial. The designers at Schwinn Hardware were interested in creating a collection that was not only durable, but one that would leave the smallest carbon footprint. Linoleum is biodegradable and does not release harmful gases or toxins into the air as it breaks down.
While many people know about linoleum, few really know its history. Linoleum was invented in England in 1863 by Frederick Walton who coined the name linoleum from the Latin name linum which means flax, and oleum, which means oil. Later in the century, Michael Nairn, a flooring manufacturer in Kirkcaldy, Scotland perfected linoleum flooring, introducing qualities such as inlaid patterning — a feature seen today.
Furniture Linoleum is made by oxidizing linseed oil mixed with gum rosin from pine trees, resin, wood flour, calcium carbonate from marble and limestone, and pigments from titanium dioxide and iron oxide. The backing is felt paper from natural cellulose fiber.