Who is responsible for sustainability? As we strive for a circular future, some would say it’s a joint effort between the consumer and the brand. It’s down to the consumer to make more considered purchases, to buy less but buy better, and to also use things for much longer. However, change needs to start with the brands themselves, who should think about the product’s entire lifecycle when creating something new. This includes manufacturing with sustainable materials, giving back to the craftspeople and communities involved, and producing the item with a minimal waste footprint, as well as making it simple and cost-effective for the consumer to repair the item or recycle when it’s no longer of use. By working together, we can all be better for our planet.
As part of our One Planet initiative, we’re focusing on improving sustainability in everything we do. Here, we take a look at what sustainable craftsmanship means and highlight just a few of our brands putting people and the planet at the heart of their designs.
Sustainable Danish design is what LIND DNA has always been about. Their signature material is recycled leather, which is a recurring feature in most of their designs - from table mats to the tables themselves. Offcuts of leather from the fashion and furniture industry are blended up into small pieces then mixed and pressed together with natural rubber from trees. The result is a beautifully textured material of exceptional quality that’s also incredibly durable, water-repellent, easy to clean, and designed to last a lifetime.
Sustainability is deeply rooted in our corporate DNA and we therefore design as well as produce the majority of our products locally in Denmark with recycled leather as a recurring design feature.
Preben Lind, Founder of LIND DNA
A commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals shows that ferm LIVING are serious about taking responsibility for sustainability. Their ‘cradle to grave’ approach means they design their collection with aesthetic sustainability in mind, choosing to create high-quality pieces using natural materials in timeless styles that they hope will be enjoyed for a long time, and also make it as easy as possible to recycle or reuse each part of the product at the end of its lifecycle.
At ferm LIVING, we proactively work to get sustainability into the core of our business. This is because we believe in it and feel it is part of our responsibility. Today, you do not ask the question of why when it comes to working with sustainability, but how. We know we aren’t perfect, and take a holistic, humble and 360-degree approach to sustainability, with a vision of becoming more sustainable and responsible year by year.
Trine Andersen, Founder & Creative Director at ferm LIVING
By promoting the ancient Iranian art of Kapu weaving, Zan Artifacts also helps to empower and celebrate the female artisans who create these beautiful, colorful baskets; in fact, the word Zan means ‘woman’. Many girls in Persia are taught the craft at a young age, but this partnership ensures their skills are rewarded with financial independence, security, and freedom, and allows them to give back to their community. It is often the first time any woman in their village has had the chance to earn a living, so it’s a huge step towards gender equality in the region.
I want to build a brand that is both sustainable and ethical. Our Kapu baskets and trays are crafted using a technique that is over 5,000 years old and has been handed down through generations of talented women. Kapu is created with plant-based materials of palm leaves and Kertak, and the weaving process itself creates zero waste. And of course, we hope that customers treasure their purchases for a lifetime.
Gola Ardestani, Founder of Zan Artifacts