Working in everything from bamboo to copper, and with a focus on sustainability, the choice of material is an integral part of these three Danish design brands. In what has become a Friday special here at DANISH™, we’re still on the lookout for specific patterns in design that represent the DNA of the brand.
‘People have often said to me: ‘If you did it in plastic it would be much easier and cheaper’. But that is not what we want. Natural materials have their limits, but that’s where good design has to do the job’ − Christoffer Skjøtt, CEO and creative director at Møbel og Rum.
Materials can help express brand values, and according to Christoffer Skjøtt it is important to show what you stand for as a brand:
‘At Møbel og Rum we believe that we live in a time where it is highly necessary that design can reach out and be more than just physical rooms, a shape, a colour or even a material. A good design needs to reflect global challenges and therefore it should not only be a ‘new thing’ – or another consumerist product made of the limited resources that we all share.’
The SMOCK Cushion created by Møbel og Rum is a good example of how materials play a role in expressing their identity and brand. They are made of polyester that comes from recycled plastic bottles and wool that comes from sustainable and natural fibres. The materials they work with has to reflect their design philosophy − sustainability and ethical design:
‘We don’t use materials that don’t fit into that mindset and we are therefore constantly on the lookout for new and more sustainable materials,’ says Christoffer Skjøtt.
Another company that taps into sustainability is We Do Wood, working only in bamboo − a favourite material that supports their values on craftsmanship and quality.
‘We work with bamboo because it is the most sustainable alternative to hard wood that exists. Bamboo grows approximately 20 times faster than oak, takes up 66 per cent more CO2 and releases 33 per cent more oxygen. At the same time it is incredibly durable and beautiful,’ says Anders Holme Jensen, CEO at We Do Wood.
At MARINOV they also specialize in processing specific materials − copper and natural leather − that they use to form their lamps, called Locus: ‘The handmade/hand-stitched Locus is made from warm copper and soft leather – natural materials, carrying the imprint of the passage of time, only improving over time. Matte copper surface finish and pliable, quality leather makes a piece of craftsmanship to be handed down from generation to generation,’ says Nikolay Marinov, designer and co-founder of MARINOV.
To all three designers, the materials they use are important in supporting their respective brand values. As Anders Holme Jensen from We Do Wood explains: ‘There are two elements that we would like to be known for: Danish design and responsibility. The materials play a role in both elements; Bamboo is an important part of our product design and at the same time it is a sustainable material and therefore a responsible solution.’