March 07, 2022 – Bea Dela Torre
Now that everything is slowly opening up - cafes, bars, and restos, I find myself itching to go out especially after being stuck at home during the quarantine.
Hearing Kura Designs’ founders explain the value proposition they bring out there reminded me of how important it is to stay still, appreciate quiet moments through taking care of my physical space.
Kura Designs was being developed pre-pandemic. College best friends: Bianca Del Rosario, a financial analyst for a locally-based conglomerate, Kaye Maguilod, digital consultant for beauty and personal care products, and Bea Limpo, licensed Interior Designer, started to brainstorm, draw designs, and evaluate potential suppliers. They’ve had samples made and ready but during the start of the pandemic, these ideas were made to pause.
I asked the partners more about Kura Designs, interested to know what it’s all about, only finding myself re-learning how to stay in and at the same time, appreciate locally made furniture.
What is Kura Designs? What are your products?
Kura Designs is a start-up that aims to create home pieces that resonate and inspire.
“We launched our first collection last October 2021. At the heart of our first collection is our desire to transport you to places, through our pieces. We take inspiration from nature, combining familiar materials and textures while giving it a modern twist.”
Their furniture promotes the beauty of solid mahogany and ash wood, and inlaid rattan. Each piece has been intentionally and thoughtfully designed to fit your space and pay tribute to our country’s resources.
“The entire collection is made locally in hopes of supporting local craftsmen and is also produced sustainably in small batches.”
Why did you start Kura Designs?
To promote sustainable furniture;
“We started Kura Designs because we wanted to offer a sustainable option for furniture that caters to those who are just starting to furnish their own space. We observed that other furniture stores generally cater to the older market with prices that tend to go over our typical budget.”
Lots of furniture options available to us are imported, ranging from quick purchases of minimalist furniture from Shopee to premium items from Europe. Creating sustainable products and supporting the local industry were very important to owners Bianca, Kaye, and Bea.
The first collection of Kura Design was made by Limpo, an interior designer, who personally designed all products from their furniture.
Despite the shift from new normal to now normal, elevating your space and investing in your own home is a must. In my opinion, the pandemic helped me appreciate solitude, peace, and quiet. Now that the country is starting to recover and the economy is opening up, I find it crucial to still make time, be comfortable with silence, and stay at home.
“With that, it’s now more than ever that we need home pieces that resonate and inspire.”
What inspires you?
Kaye: I am usually inspired by the content I consume. I often spend time on Pinterest and Instagram Explore to see what the current trends are and then try to think outside the box on what else can be improved. As much as possible, I also take note of the things I often need as a consumer.
Bea: It’s hard to pinpoint what inspires me, but it’s usually random, day to day things. Does that make sense? Haha! I’m a very visual and introspective person, so I take inspiration from many things- interior architecture, nature, photos, past and present experiences, etc. And also like Kaye, taking notes of things I need as a consumer, or ways to make my life easier.
Bianca: With regard to our business, it’s definitely my partners who have kept me inspired. It hasn’t been easy launching and managing our business during the pandemic, but we regularly brainstorm about more ways that we can help our brand grow. As they mentioned, we try our best to take the perspective of a consumer in that process.
The owners admit that “pandemic fatigue” is a struggle they battle. However, they find that investing in furniture and curating your space massively helps your mental-wellbeing. I believe part of self-love is taking care not only of yourself but the environment you live in. It’s important to wake up in a home you love, care for the space you live in, and invest in sustainable furniture that will last you forever.
When asked about their favorite Kura Design space:
Kaye: Definitely the Alon shelf for me.
I really love the solihiya and wood combination, and it adds so much personality to my otherwise bare wall.
Bea: My favorite piece is the Isla clothing rack. Seeing even just the first sample was such a treat! I love it because it’s functional, well-made and really pretty. I also love how our different color combinations cater to different types of people and their preferences.
Bianca: My favorite piece is definitely the Gabi side table. I really love the color and grain of ash wood, and I think it goes really well with the three color options that we offer.
Kura Design is a great brand that not only promotes local sustainable furniture but a brand that offers inspiration. Living in a city can get a bit noisy. I personally struggle with staying at home especially with the itch to go out, have fun, socialize, and party. However, through Bianca, Kaye, and Bea’s story, I learned to invest and appreciate quiet times.
Real stories. Real people.
We believe that life isn’t about a binary of ones and zeros - but about the sum of our hopes and dreams, our struggles and heartaches, our tragedies and triumphs.
The things that unite us are far stronger than the things that divide us.
And those stories are why we are alike.