The Futon Shop: Pioneering Organic Furniture

Jun 12, 2024
By Liana Werner-Gray
If your sofa, bedding, and mattress aren’t made with organic fibers it’s made with petrochemicals, which cause cancer and is one of the reasons why cancer stats are so high these days. That’s the sad reality of it. People are breathing this in their homes where they live, where it’s meant to be a safe sanctuary, but it’s not, it’s a toxic environment created by these industries that have kept this quiet for too long. You’ve got to be aware so that you aren’t a victim. 
I had the opportunity to interview one of the longest pioneers in the organic fibers and furniture movement - yes she is a legend and a health revolutionist. You will be both shocked and inspired with what you are about to read. 
In 1976, Suzanne Diamond, a trailblazer in the organic furniture movement, changed the landscape of American home furnishings. Her journey began with a simple but urgent need: to provide a safe, non-toxic sleeping environment for her newborn. Alarmed by the prevalence of petrochemicals in conventional mattresses, Suzanne took matters into her own hands and crafted her first organic futon.
A Revolutionary Beginning
Born in Providence, Rhode Island, and raised in New York, Suzanne attended the Boston Museum School of Fine Arts. It was here that she met Michio Kushi, a master of Zen living and macrobiotics. Under his guidance, Suzanne learned about futons, which were popular for their dual function as both sofas and beds, fitting perfectly with the minimalist and budget-friendly lifestyle of the time.
In Boston, Suzanne met and married Artie Diamond. They soon moved to Los Angeles, closely associating with the founders of Erewhon Market, Michio and Aveline Kushi. When Suzanne needed a non-toxic mattress for her baby, she leveraged her knowledge from the Kushis to craft an organic futon from natural cotton. This sparked a revolutionary idea: why not offer these organic futons to others?
The Birth of a Business
In 1976, Suzanne started making custom futons from her living room. She was one of the first to introduce organic futons to the American market, handcrafting each piece with care and dedication. Her living room became the heart of a burgeoning business, driven by a simple but profound mission: to provide safe, non-toxic furniture.
“Every day I received a phone call asking, ‘Can you make me a custom futon?’” Suzanne recalls. This demand marked the humble beginnings of The Futon Shop. Her approach was hands-on: buying organic cotton, sewing covers, stuffing futons, and hand-tufting each piece. These operations soon turned into a thriving industry.
Growth and Global Reach
By 1998, Suzanne’s innovative approach caught the attention of the Japanese Economic Trade Commission, leading her to introduce organic futons to Japan. Today, The Futon Shop has expanded to over 50 employees and 11 retail stores, transforming from a small home operation into a thriving business in the USA.
The Futon Shop prides itself on ethical sourcing and sustainable practices. The organic cotton is American-grown, and wool is sourced from North and South America. Other materials, like coconut coir, organic latex, cashmere, and horsehair, come from around the globe. “Our mission is to make furniture without fossil fuels. It’s really not that hard to replace toxic man-made materials with natural fibers,” Suzanne explains. “Our customers understand the value of investing in their health and the environment.”
Beyond Futons: Expanding into Sofas
The natural progression from futons to sofas was driven by a personal need. Suzanne wanted an organic sofa and, unable to find one, decided to create it herself. She deconstructed a conventional sofa and replaced synthetic materials with natural ones—wool instead of polyester, latex instead of foam, and water-based adhesives instead of toxic glues. The result was an organic sofa that is not only safe but also resistant to mold and bed bugs.
“Our products are designed with love and the highest quality natural fibers,” Suzanne states. “We want our customers to have peace of mind, knowing they are choosing safe and healthy options for their homes.”
Advocating for Awareness
Suzanne emphasizes the importance of understanding what we bring into our homes. Many people are unaware that conventional furniture is often made with petrochemicals, which can pose serious health risks. By offering natural alternatives, The Futon Shop empowers consumers to make informed, healthier choices.
The Futon Shop Today
The Futon Shop offers a wide range of futons, natural sofas, mattresses, pillows, and bedding, all crafted with natural and safe materials. “People are tired of disposable toxic furniture. They want to get in control of their lives and make healthier choices,” says Suzanne.
Visit their showroom or explore their website to discover the difference that natural, non-toxic furniture can make in your life. Join us on our mission to create a healthier, happier world. Welcome to The Futon Shop, where innovation meets sustainability in the world of organic furniture.
I recently made the switch to an organic sofa and bedding. It’s a wise investment. I have partnered with The Futon Shop to bring you a discount. Use my code here Liana5 for 5% discount.