Here at YUME, we might be all about slow, sustainable living – but that doesn’t mean we don’t enjoy a little instant gratification. Especially when it means doing good at the same time.
So, you can imagine our excitement when we met the founders of Masaya and discovered that for every product the company sells, it plants 100 trees. To date, Masaya has planted 350,000. Sound impossible? Not if your sister company is a sustainable forestry business.
Masaya’s incredible story began in 2002, when biologist Aram Terry was assigned by the U.S. Peace Corps to Nicaragua. What he saw stunned him: farmers cutting down countless trees to make room to expand their land. Aram decided to stay to create a socially and environmentally sustainable business of his own, and from 2008 to 2012, his company, Maderas Sostenibles (meaning sustainable woods) began establishing tree farms on deforested land – and to process and export wood products from a tropical forest destroyed in 2007 by Hurricane Felix.
As luck would have it, Aram’s brother Justin is an American artist and designer. And in 2015, Justin teamed up with Nicaraguan designer Abril Zepeda to form Masaya & Co.
YUME co-founder Marie Engberg discovered Masaya’s work after a months-long hunt for sustainable chairs that fit the YUME design vision. “The more we learned about Masaya’s story, the more fascinated we became by how the team had turned a problem into an inspiring – not to mention beautiful – solution,” says Marie. “We love the way they combine a clean, Scandinavian aesthetic with authentic local flavor and craftsmanship. It’s a unique look that brings warmth, personality – and that wonderful feeling of making personal choices that have positive, global impact.”
Named after Abril’s hometown of Masaya, known for its craft and artisan tradition, the company now employs 70 skilled local craftsmen and has showrooms in Managua, Nicaragua – and Nashville, Tennessee, USA.
The handcrafted Masaya Lounge Chair – one of the company’s most popular pieces – is available in the YUME shop in the gorgeous traditional Momotombo pattern or smooth, elegant barley leather.
So you can show off your excellent taste – all while knowing that somewhere in Central America, one hundred seedlings are taking root because of a choice you made.