Varas Verdes is our Supplier Of The Week, 1-7 February 2016; nominated for their approach to sustainability, responsive customer service and fully customisable designs. They offer two ranges; the Mercado Collection - focussed on turning pallets into colourful, minimal impact furniture, great for children's rooms and smaller spaces, and POT - the seat-come-storage stool that is 100% natural and suitable for the outdoors too.
Varas Verdes is a relatively young company, but already you have a presence worldwide. What was the inspiration behind creating the brand?
For us it wasn't an inspiration, but an emergency call. Our economy is continuously eating all of our natural resources. The question we ask is: What do we have to do about the impact of human life towards nature to achieve a healthy business and sustainability?
With this in mind, Varas Verdes was born to contribute to a healthier planet, leading brands and mass markets through better business practices and giving people to the opportunity to enjoy products with powerful messages.
Our first collection, Mercado, was designed to shape the history of the Portuguese traditional stool into a collection with endless possibilities of shape, dimension and colour. This collection is designed to inspire lower consumption and environment protection through the recovery and reuse of pallets and reclaimed wood.
POT is another truly sustainable and 100% natural collection. Made from reused cork granules it looks to reduce the consumption of an already sustainable material.
So, that's our inspiration - presenting an alternative way of doing things.
As we can see, your brand has a huge focus on sustainability. Why do you believe that this is an important factor in the design world?
What would happen if the world woke up one day and realised that it has nothing more to offer? We think that ecodesign is responsible for people to understand how we can all make positive changes in our way of consumption. We are focussed on creating products with real life values, that respect the environment and generate an economy around that.
Our activity involves reusing pallets, woods, cork, paints and others things like cardboard for packaging and for our branding cards. Sustainability is certainly a problem that design should solve and we are trying to deal with it.
The Mercado Collection is full of very colourful designs. How is colour important in your designing process?
As human beings, we have an emotional response to response and this has subtle ways to improve our happiness. In the Mercado Collection we used a colour palette reminiscent of fresh fruits and vegetables, remembering the old markets and fresh products associated with wellbeing. As everyone responds differently to colour our Mercado collection is available in 18 colours, allowing it to easily adapt to any environment, and fully suit the client.
Can you give us some exciting insights or previews for Varas Verdes in 2016?
Our team specialises in advanced carpentry processes. At our studio in Lisbon we are looking at the restoration of vintage and contemporary furniture. Watch this space!
We are also excited because our latest product, POT has traveled to England, The Netherlands, Germany and China in the last year, and will soon be heading to North America!
Finally, why does design matter to you?
Far from being a sort of perceived value of luxury, design must balance society with the environment. We aim to use design to reduce the use of natural resources and reuse waste as much we can.