After years spent disparaging the wastefulness of her once beloved construction industry, Eli Brown gathered her courage, her tools, and her partner Andrea Bologna and started an eco-friendly venture in an unlikely location.
The duo opened Eco 7 Trading Co. off the square in historic downtown Carrollton to merge their passions for reclaiming, recycling, and repurposing antique and industrial furnishings. The store is a pristine picker’s paradise where it’s not uncommon to see a vintage Studebaker hood hung as wall art above a handcrafted reclaimed-wood coffee table. Brown calls their style “industrial” but has put much effort into making the shop feel fresh and modern. “Industrial is a great product combination of steel and metal and rich reclaimed woods,” she explains. From old metal letters and 25-pound typewriters to World War II artifacts and antique medical equipment, every piece tells a story.
Although the women carry a few items on consignment, everything else in the store has been restored or made with completely eco-friendly materials, such as water-based and low VOC paints, stains, and sealers. All of their repurposed pieces are handcrafted and made with a variety of materials, including reclaimed or recycled wood, metal, and architectural elements. “I did not want to work with harmful chemicals, and I did not want to be wasteful or buy new materials,” Brown says. “Any time I can find an item and preserve a piece of history, or keep a piece out of a landfill, I’m happy.”