Local Design: Akuko

WORDS Cheri Morris

Introducing Akuko, a locally produced hand-crafted range of ethically made homeware and accessories.

Spotted at KAMERS/Makers, Akuko is the newly launched brain child of Louél Staude and is born of an innate desire to live life simply and to live it well. Louél collaborates with artisans to bring life to ideas that celebrate soft-touch living, natural beauty and long-lasting functionality. Inspired to move away from mass production, Akuko is all about local, mindful and artisanal design.

The range currently offers a smorgasbord of limited-edition homeware and apparel, including bedding, crockery, T-shirts and lighting. Each item carries the distinctive mark of its maker whose hands have individually sewn, moulded or felted the item. When Akuko isn’t rendering ideas, it’s constantly designing, creating and prototyping new products. The current range is centered around four basic materials: alpaca felt, pottery clay, cotton and bamboo yarn.

Akuko’s alpaca fibre, a diverse natural material renowned for its strength, breathability, durability and hypoallergenic qualities, is sourced from a small alpaca herd in Magaliesburg. The pottery clay takes on an infinite variety of distinctive shapes, forms and textures at the skilled hands of talented artisans. The brand’s bamboo yarn is eco-friendly, hand-dyed and locally produced.

Akuko will also be releasing a selection of furniture. Follow Akuko on Instagram for updates on its online store launch and pre-order by emailing Louél at louel@akuko.co.za.