It’s been almost five years since our company was founded, back in September 2011. In less than five short years, Brendan, Art and I have been able to accomplish so much that we still look back and wonder how we managed to do it all. Out of all the incredible stats we could share, one is how many times we’ve been to Asia in the last five years. Last year we set a record at 18 trips; this year we’ve hit 23.
Our 23 trips to Asia have all been to meet with our partners in manufacturing. We are aware that there is an apparent stigma against manufacturing in Asia nowadays. This is due to the general sentiment that products coming out of Asia, particularly China, are notorious for being built cheaply at the expense of decent labor practices. As founding partners, owners and managers, we decided to be wholly transparent about our products being made in China and other lesser regarded countries because we believe the stigma does not apply to us. Our goal is to break the mold and show that manufacturing in Asia does not necessarily have to mean bad. By knowing exactly how our products are made and getting to know the men and women who make them, we confidently trust that what we do falls in line with the standards, ethics and values that we hold for ourselves and for our customers. We are proud to say that no matter where our products come from, our products are made consciously with good practices and the general good in mind.
The purpose of this blog series is to chronicle our journey behind the scenes. We felt like sharing the stories about the people behind the furniture was a just fit for what we wanted to achieve. Through sharing these intimate stories about peoples’ family, passions and dreams, we feel like this brings us all one step closer to our furniture.
We were first inspired to document these stories upon our first trip to Shenzhen, China. Like all of our trips overseas, we had gone to inspect the working conditions of our exclusive workshops. The quality of production had surpassed our standards and I still remember being left in utterly complete, jaw-dropping awe at the skills of the craftsman we saw that first day at work. We learned that many of the skills are traditional and are passed down through generations. Many of the craftsmen had gained their training not through a trade’s school like we typically accustom ourselves to in North America, but at home from their fathers and mothers. Each person has their own story to tell and every interview has proven to show that each person is as unique as their craft.
Our ongoing presence and awareness as invested stakeholders in this company has enabled us to grow Rove Concepts in a way that has seen tremendous growth while remaining aligned with our original vision. Humans of Rove has been an important part of what we do each day, reminding us about what’s going on around us, who we are and why we’re here.
We hope Humans of Rove will add an extra quality to our furniture for our customers. We want the people who become owners of our furniture to feel like they've been taken to a different part of the world and have found something amazingly unique to bring home with them. And with that, there's always a great story to be told.
This isn't just about the incredible skill poured into making our furniture. It's about getting to know people. By showing their personalities, learning about their lives, culture, family, hardships and what makes them happy, we recall our humanity and in a grander sense become more intimate with the world around us.
We’ll be sharing stories ongoing as we continue bridging deeper connections between our furniture and our people. Read The Journal to meet the people. Thanks for reading!
- Victor T.
Meet our first Human, the Seamstress of Shenzhen.