The Material Debate: Why REAL Matters
Author: Alessandro Perinato —Kreoo
Date: 9 December 2014
The debate has been raging for years on which are better, Natural or man made materials? There are many different views on this intriguing subject. And of course your choices will vary based on your personal style and other needs. Technically, there is no wrong answer, but at Kreoo we believe natural materials still triumph.
The one exception
There is one asterisk that should be mentioned here. When manufacturing is done unethically, or endangered materials are harvested without regard to conservation, man made materials offer a valid compromise. Fortunately, this only applies to a small segment of natural products.
Even then, you have options. Purchase materials sourced from a different location where the material is plentiful. Or choose from the endless variety of natural alternatives! No blood diamonds for you! Support an approved diamond mine. Substitute Shorea wood for endangered Teak.
A Question of Health
Especially when designing for a home, man made and chemically enhanced materials beg the question of health and safety. Often, the dangers of artificial materials aren’t widely known until years after the fact. Asbestos was used in homes for decades before it was discovered to cause cancer.
This is opposed to natural materials which are actively used to promote health and well being, even as medical treatments in certain countries. Natural marble in particular is bacteria resistant and discourages microscopic pathogens. It emits no off gasses that impair the quality of your air, and has no unsavory chemical imbalances. How’s that for a pro/con list?
An Appreciation and a Responsibility
Choosing natural materials is inherently environmentally-friendly because it’s using what the earth provides. Being around nature gives us a vital appreciation for the earth we live on.
Think about it! People care about what they see! When we bring nature into our homes we are that much more aware of its value.
Plus, the more people choosing natural, the more say we have in how it’s managed, harvested and prepared! Sounds like a win-win.
The Luxury of Authenticity
Real pearls or fake? Diamonds or CZ? A French chocolatier’s masterpiece or some fat-free, prepackaged excuse for a brownie? There is something about the genuine article that we as humans crave. We don’t like to be lied to! When we can choose natural materials for our homes, their honesty translates into more authentic design. One has to remember that the majority of synthetic products exist to copy natural materials! Fake wood, faux marble. They all claim to be as good as the real thing because real is the standard!
There’s also something to be said for pattern. The organic movement of natural marble’s veining can never be truly replicated by a machine. And that intangible drastically affects design. This is why every Kreoo piece is made with only the finest natural stone, wood and other materials.
When you’re designing a space you’ll actually live in, day-in and day-out, the materials you choose are perhaps the most important decision.
You have to ask yourself, are you willing to settle for an imitation of the real thing?