The beautiful selection of home goods combines style with sustainable design.
Nkuku was founded on the back of a life-changing adventure. Ali and Alex Cooke set off on a year-long round the world trip. From the outset Ali and Alex were inspired and humbled by the talented craftspeople and their beautiful work, that they met on the journey. They started working with artisans throughout the world, supporting and celebrating their skills by bringing their products to a wider audience.
Here's some of the Nkuku story:
"The name Nkuku (‘Nu-kuh -kuh’) is borrowed from a village in Zambia - We work with independent businesses, social projects and co-operatives with a focus on building strong business relationships with all of our suppliers, so that we can work together towards mutual success. Our primary focus is transparency, we see our suppliers more as partners and encourage open dialogue and communication. We make regular visits and employ agents who also visit our suppliers often, to assist with production queries and offer support and advice. We allow long lead times to ensure that no unnecessary pressure is placed on production and that capacity is not exceeded.
We adhere to the standard globally recognised 10 Principles Of Fair Trade, but have our own procedures for the management of our supply base. A key principle for us is working with suppliers who are at the start of their fair trade process. Providing that there is the desire to start on an ethical journey, we will invest in the supplier to help them achieve this. As a result we will have suppliers who are at varying stages of their own accreditation. Trading fairly provides these artisans with an opportunity to build a future. It helps businesses develop and creates sustainable employment.
We work natural and recycled materials with a focus on sustainable methods of production, and this shapes our collections. We keep air freight to a minimum, and review our packaging regularly. We are constantly evaluating our processes and looking at ways we can improve. Many of our products are handmade from recycled materials. We gather the waste leftover from other industries including; cotton from discarded t-shirts, leather, metals and glass as well as recycled saris. Recycling allows us to create new and beautiful products with less impact on our environment.
The relationship between an artisan and a beautiful handmade piece creates a story, which makes each product not a mass market item, but an individually crafted piece. The traditional skills used by our suppliers have been handed down from generation to generation.
We value this age-old knowledge and hope to help keep it alive. We love the character in each item, the handmade nature of our products is what we believe sets us apart. We want to protect these skills."