We love ourselves a really good-looking poster wall and consider art an essential part of life. When we were deciding on what materials to use for our A Good Poster there were a few—okay quite a lot of—considerations.
The quality of the posters themselves, of course, as well as the sustainability of materials, production processes, packaging and transportation were all crucial to the inception of our poster project. In the interest of transparency, and to quote Montell Jordan, this is how we do it.
The majority of posters nowadays are printed on wood pulp paper because that’s what most printers work with. Whilst wood pulp paper is fine for quality if it’s a high enough grade, we have a few bones to pick when it comes to its sustainability for our planet.
That’s why we chose to use premium quality bamboo paper instead. The advantages of bamboo paper over regular wood-pulp paper are as follows:
1. Bamboo is fast-growing and can be harvested again and again once it reaches maturity. This is much less damaging to the environment than regularly chopping down trees.
2. It’s a hardy and self-sufficient plant (actually a grass FYI) that requires no pesticides or fertilisers and around half the amount of water compared with trees.
3. It absorbs twice the amount of carbon and releases 30% more oxygen than trees.
4. Turning bamboo into paper is a much cleaner process that uses less water and doesn’t require harmful bleaches, such as chlorine, that pollute ecosystems.
We decided to source the bamboo from its natural homeland: China. After a lot of testing, we decided on 157gsm matte art bamboo paper. It comes from the Guangdong region of China and is FSC certified, meaning that the plantations are responsibly managed from both a social and environmental perspective.
It’s aesthetically pleasing too; the matte finish makes the prints stand out and it’s age-resistant, meaning that it won’t fade over time.
You’re probably thinking “great, but doesn't the bamboo paper have to travel from China?” That is correct. However, to compensate for this we make sure to order in large rolls (what we call bulk), delivered by train, and climate-compensate all the emissions.
All printing takes place in Estonia by our own local team there. After carefully assessing all the options, we decided to build out our own facility because it was the only way we could manage quality control and minimise waste.
We produce our sustainable art by cutting large rolls of bamboo paper and then printing on demand. This means there’s no waste from overproduction, a huge problem in the industry.
We chose Estonia, partly because of the country's longstanding printing tradition and local expertise, but also to be close to our main distribution centre, minimising shipping miles. Therefore it’s possible to print and ship as fast as anyone but with less waste.
Instead of the usual patchwork international suppliers to make the frames and hangers, we produce everything locally using materials sourced in Europe. This was a conscious decision to reduce shipping miles and therefore greenhouse gas emissions.
Our wooden frames are made from FSC certified oak or pine, sourced from sustainably managed forests in Europe. The front ‘glass’ shield is made from recycled plexiglass that’s lightweight and shatterproof and the backboard is made from recycled chipboard.
We're working our little behinds off to get this marvellous product available to you as soon as possible! Stay tuned here on our site and on our Instagram to be inspired and get the latest news.