By Silvana Corres
Starting a new project like, opening your own business, starting a new family, moving out from home, or getting married and starting a new family, and having to move to a different city to start you own business is a real challenge. And this challenge comes along with furnishing.
But how can you furnish the home of your dreams or your business, when designer furniture is so expensive? The answer to that question is HEY KOTI.
We are a Social Enterprise dedicated to design, fabricate, and commercialize fair-trade furniture made with Wood Waste. What we basically do is, we reuse the wood that some companies disposed as “garbage” and we turn it into beautiful furniture and decoration items. The best part? We collaborate with carpenters from vulnerable populations where their job is not well paid and valued.
HEY KOTI means “Hello Home” in Finnish, and the reason of that name is because Finland is a country that inspires us because of its well-known minimalistic designs and their profound respect for nature.
When I started this project three years ago with my husband and partner Arturo Albarrán, we were a young couple who had just got married, and the only thing we had as furniture was an old table, 2 chairs and our bed, and we used a bookshelf as a kitchen cabinet. Sounds familiar?
This is how we decided to start making our own furniture and we noticed that we could make a business out of that. But for us that was not enough. If we were going to start a business it had to be sustainable, not only financially, but environmentally, and we starting wondering what happened with all the wood that was used in the furniture industry, and how much of that wood was discarded. We realized that the amount of “garbage wood” was huge, so, why not reuse it and turning it into a well-designed high-quality furniture?
Once we had enough wood and projects, we realized we needed more help, so doing some scouting we met a couple of carpenters that didn’t have a job at the time and were trying to provide for their families so we invited them to join HEY KOTI. Working with them made us realize that making furniture is an art and using “garbage wood” to make it is a real challenge, but a totally worth it one.
So here we are three years later, living with the furniture of our dreams, working in a small workshop, and sharing that dream with the carpenters we work side by side, and also with all the people that believes in our project.
Working in projects and commercializing products as sustainable as possible nowadays it should not to be an option, it should be THE ONLY OPTION. Thank you to everyone that shares our philosophy and way of thinking!!
We love you all!
Sincerely, your friends from HEY KOTI.