Let me introduce you to Lisa, a young woman that you could say wears many hats (and you wouldn’t be wrong). At present she is teaching Interior Design at Edith Cowan University, running the show as secretary for The Colour Society of Australia W.A. Division AND runs the business that she founded in 2014. First and foremost, however, Lisa is a designer and intends to continue to channel her creative juju into growing her environmentally responsible business Pip & Printer.
Pip & Printer encapsulates the kind of values I wish all businesses would; maintaining a strong focus on sustainability whilst creating home-wares that will last for many seasons (none of this ‘hot this season, not the next’ business, amen). Products under the Pip & Printer brand include environmentally friendly cushions and other adorable textile items. These products are proudly created using a fabric made from a blend of 100% certified organic cotton and sustainable hemp, which is then hand-screenprinted using only eco-friendly inks. The end result is not only a product you know has been carefully considered to minimise its impact, but one that also exemplifies what it means to produce locally and consciously. With all this in mind I thought I’d spend 5 minutes getting to know Lisa’s thoughts on running a sustainable business – enjoy!
So Lisa, how did you come to start Pip & Printer?
I began by finding my passion for screen printing whilst undertaking my postgrad at uni, and when I graduated I wanted to begin a business to develop my own homewares brand. I really wanted to apply my interior design and product design knowledge to a brand that was based around Perth.
Why did you choose to go down the “green” path?
It was never really something I thought about, it was just something I did! I think we all have a responsibility to live sustainably however possible, and as a designer I felt that it was my duty to design in a sustainable manner. I didn’t want to be creating new products to go into the world to then be thrown out or cast aside. I wanted to create beautiful products that people would value, that had excellent longevity and avoided harming the earth. I enjoy researching eco alternatives and using them to create products that fit into our every day life.
What obstacles have you faced trying to be a sustainable operator?
Materials are always more expensive, harder to source, and harder to promote. Trying to convince people to spend a little more money on something is tough – some people can’t see past the idea of ‘fast fashion’ and want quick cheap changes for their home. Educating people proves to be the best way to help people embrace change, but I try not to be preachy.
What values do you think are important for businesses of the future to encapsulate?
I think all designers should consider eco options, and sourcing locally is another big focus of mine. I like to work exclusively with Australian suppliers to ensure money spent on my brand stays within our economy and provides employment for Australians. I research everything to ensure I’m making the best decision possible. You’ve got to be able to stand by every choice you make.
Finally, what excites you about the sustainability space?
I love reading about new products on Materia, it’s an excellent resource for finding materials especially in the Interior & Spatial Design realm. I make sure sustainability is an important focus in all of the units that I teach (I’m also an Environmental & Spatial Design Lecturer at Edith Cowan University here in Perth) and I think inspiring our next generation of designers is really important. The more people who make conscious decisions about what they consume and produce, the better we’ll live in the future!
You can locate Lisa and her lovely Pip & Printer brand at:
Website – www.pipandprinter.com
Instagram – @pip_and_printer