Interview with Niki Morabbi of URU Design about the invention of SOLOSOCKS TM and the innovative, sustainable design label from Copenhagen
Greenpicks: Please introduce yourself and the label URU briefly.
Nick: The Company URU Design is a new Danish fashion clothing company with the mission to combine Danish design with innovative ideas and sustainability.
Today, not many companies deliver all three elements in one product. Our ambition is to create high-end Danish design based on unique innovative ideas using quality organic materials. Not an easy job. But that’s the promise.
SOLOSOCKS: No Pair, just Singles
Nick: SOLOSOCKS TM is URU Design’s first creation delivering the promise. The socks are designed by talented designers and made of the worlds’ best organic combed cotton. And the packaging is made of recyclable material.
The innovative idea behind SOLOSOCKS TM is to avoid waste of socks and stop pairing socks. When one of our socks gets damaged, we discard the pair. Imagine how many socks are wasted in the world. With SOLOSOCKS TM we can avoid waste of billions of socks.
SOLOSOCKS TM is a pack of 5 or 7 single socks that are different but designed to mix and match. As mentioned the benefits are that you do not need to pair socks anymore and you will avoid discarding pairs when one is damaged.
The special designed packaging for SOLOSOCKS TM can be reused as a storage box in your drawer. Just pick and use them. And after a wash just put them back in the storage box.
Greenpicks: How did you get the idea for your business and when did you get started?
Nick: The founder of URU Design has three children. Imagine how many “lonely socks” the family had to deal with. The bunch of single socks was annoying, a daily irritation not only due to the practical pairing aspect of it but more because of the huge amount of waste and the environmental burden.
As a solution the family invented an event they called “socks pairing gathering”. The whole family got together once a while and tried to pair the lonely socks. For every socks found and paired you could earn a coin. The idea of SOLOSOCKS TM concept emerged out of these cozy family sock-pairing sessions.
Greenpicks: What happened since the start?
Nick: When the oldest son of the family became 18 he got serious about the idea and the father decided to give up his job to support his son in realizing the idea.
It took a couple of years hard work involving many talented designers and creative people to produce the first collection of the SOLOSOCKS TM. When the first samples were presented in Denmark the reactions were overwhelmingly positive. Various exclusive stores ordered the product and the adventure began.
Greenpicks: How did you come to the issue of sustainability?
Nick: The family has always been an active consumer of organic products and an advocate for sustainability. This is inherent in the URU Designs’ mission.
Greenpicks: How do you make your products or where do you source them from?
Nick: Design, development and quality assurance is done in Denmark. Administration, logistics and distribution are located in Germany.
We believe worlds’ best organic cotton is produced in Turkey. So we buy the cotton in Turkey and produce the socks in Turkey based on the most advanced socks production technology.
From a CO2 emission and transportation point of view it makes sense to keep the production in Europe since our main markets are in Europe.
Greenpicks: How do you get ideas for new products, what materials do you use in preference and why?
Nick: We admire diversity and appreciate individuality. Therefore our company is called You Are You. In our creative design we’ll strive to feature diversity and allow expression of individuality.
Our design process is based on experts’ teamwork. Usually a designer leads a project involving various material and production specialists.
Danish design is about creating aesthetic products based on values such as functionality, simplicity and minimalism. To that, we add features that make life easier and more enjoyable; such as more comfort, better functionality and daily ease of use or a combination.
Quality is a matter of using the best possible environmentally friendly and sustainable material with social responsibility. It is not only a question of which material, but also where, how and by whom it is made.
Greenpicks: What do you love about your job? What gives you a special pleasure in your work?
Nick: Creating sustainable design products with a twist of innovation is a lot of fun.
Greenpicks: Who or what inspires you?
Nick: Our inspiration sources are the nature, outstanding design and most of all daily family life.
Greenpicks: What is your vision resp. the vision of URU?
Nick: Our vision is that URU becomes one the top 10 sustainable/organic brands by 2025.
Greenpicks: How do you see the future of URU? And the future of your products?
Nick: We have more exciting ideas. We are currently working on developing similar concepts like SOLOSTOCKS TM. We are thrilled to introduce them soon. So the future is busy but bright.
Greenpicks: What was the most exciting experience having your own brand / company?
Nick: The brand has been selling itself. Right from the beginning, without any special sales or promotion activities, SOLOSOCKS TM was ordered by some of the most exclusive design stores in Denmark. And now we are also receiving orders from famous design stores in other European countries.
Magazines and bloggers contact us and are interested to know more about the brand. Recently our socks were featured in Süddeutsche Zeitung, and Brigitte, which has accelerated SOLOSOCKS TM popularity in Germany.
Greenpicks: In the end, please tell us something about the location your company is based. Which places (restaurants, shops, bars, …) nearby would you recommend?
Nick: Copenhagen is not the biggest city in the world but it has so much to offer. The little Mermaid, Noma (worlds best restaurant with 3 Michelin stars) and Tivoli garden are all only 20 minutes away from our locations.
Greenpicks: Thank you very much for the interview and great success for the future!