Creating an oasis of calm in an almost fully enclosed exhibition space at Design Joburg last week, Weylandts Spaces struck the perfect balance between nature and modern design with the introduction of its concept Raw Refined.

We sat down with Weylandts founder Chris Weylandt, to chat about his design concept, the evolution of Weylandts and Weylandts Spaces, and the future of timeless design.

The inspiration behind Raw Refined:

“What do our customers want these days? Experiences. And what’s most important is the authenticity of the product, of the experience. It’s got to have soul; it’s got to be real and unique.

“Experience is so important, and it applies to many areas, in work and at home. We’re all so busy in our lives. There’s a lot of information to take in, a lot of stress out there, and noise. A lot of ugly stuff as well. So, when you come home to your space, you need to be able to leave all that behind. You’ve got to transform in your space, have that experience, feel that energy.

“That’s what we put together and it flows right through the stand. It’s about texture, the mixing of materials and celebrating this amazing natural product that’s out there.”

The future of Weylandts Spaces:

“The interior concept division is very exciting for us; it offers new avenues to explore. Because we’re pushing bespoke product, from that we’ll be able to develop new lines that will filter through into our [Weylandts] retail space.

“There will always be limitations on some of the raw materials, but what we’ll do is take elements of that and put it into some of the product that’s more accessible. Like adding a handle, for example. Or, right now we’re doing a beautiful sideboard range with hand-painted doors. It’s very contemporary, but it’s got a feeling of uniqueness and accessibility, which is what we want. There is a huge appreciation for design these days, which is great! The market is evolving. It’s an exciting space to be in.”

Doing your design homework:

“The trend is people are going to want to buy less in future. But they’re going to buy better. They’re going to do their homework and make sure what they’re buying lasts. And that’s why great design is so important. It’s not about trends or fads or disposable product. That’s not what we’re about. When people buy our product, it lasts. The design lasts, the materials last. And that’s important.

“We love the simplicity of Scandinavian design, the quality. It’s very refined. And we’ve got our own take on it, from a South African perspective. We’re far more casual; it’s a different lifestyle here. So, we just take that DNA, the principles of Scandinavian design and the ethos, and apply it to our products. Which are far bolder, much more raw and richer in texture.”