Slow Design is a design philosophy that requires a re-evaluation of how we make things. It is a holistic approach to design that considers the individual, economic, environmental, and social impacts around it, encouraging a shift towards sustainability.
It is a term that was defined in 2008 by sustainability and activist, Alastair Fuad-Luke, and Carolyn F. Strauss, the founder of Amsterdam’s SlowLab, in their published paper, ‘The Slow Design Principles – A new interrogative and reflexive tool for design research and practice. ‘ In the paper, Luke and Strauss described and developed 6 Slow Design Principles to be used as an evaluative tool to encourage this sustainable approach to design.
The Slow Furniture Movement is a branch of many other slow movements such as design and consumption. It applies the slow design principles to the creation and purchasing of furniture. It is a direct response to the vagaries of mass-produced ‘fast’ furniture, valuing quality and sustainability over quantity and unsustainable immediacy. This movement is about furniture pieces that are built to last, can be repaired, have a unique story, and can be future heirlooms. It is also about respecting makers and ensuring they are treated ethically.
We believe that makers, designers, and artisans should be paid and treated fairly for their craft. We do this by having a transparent, flexible, and open relationship with our makers, ensuring they are paid and treated appropriately for their work.
Most of our makers focus on sustainable methods and how to ensure their practices become more sustainable in future. From Aymeric Renoud of Draff Studio, who has made a new, innovative furniture-making material called ‘draff’ using the spent grain from local distilleries and breweries in Scotland to silversmith, Claire Malet, who uses eco-silver and recycled metal to create her stunning sculptural pieces in rural Herefordshire, AUTHOR makers are at the forefront of creating sustainable interior design practices.
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We believe in making carefully considered design investments for the future in luxury furniture and homeware. Choosing these exceptionally well-made pieces is more cost effective in the long run as you aren’t drawn into a cycle of continual and wasteful re-buying that comes with impulsive buying of low-quality, mass-produced items.
Habitual re-buying causes serious effects on the environment when unwanted pieces are thrown away. We encourage our customers to resell or rehome outdated pieces no longer wanted. We want to shift expectations so that a luxury furniture or homeware piece is expected to last many years, seeing its owner through house moves and changes in fashion. These pieces, if well looked after, can be future collectables and heirlooms that can be passed on to future generations.
These design investments can also range from bespoke to customised, one-of-a-kind to limited edition, making it particularly valuable in future.
At AUTHOR HQ we try to do what we can, where we can to help the environment. Our packing is 100% recycled or recyclable. The protective foam pellets and green bubble wrap we use are biodegradable. Even our luxury gift wrapping is recycled, and our tissue paper is acid-free. We also recycle any packaging that has been sent to us and encourage others to do the same. This is why the outer packaging may not look its prettiest when it arrives with you but we assure you everything inside is beautiful.
With solely promoting high quality craft furnishings in Britain, our environmental impact with deliveries is significantly brought sown as our pieces are made slowly and with thought, decreasing the amount that is sent out. Our overall goal is to plant more trees here in our local area to off-put our carbon emissions. We have already started plantings trees at AUTHOR HQ and will continue to expand this in future.
Do you produce sustainable furniture and homeware pieces in Britain? Learn how you can become a maker here.
INTERIOR CLASSICS - DESIGNED AND MADE IN BRITAIN