You know I love collaborating with like minded people, small and upcoming brands that take the 'sustainably thing' to hart. I discovered QURC in February/March and loved their pieces right away! They weren’t available for sale yet, but we wanted to collaborate for my spring/summer shoot with some samples they had. Sadly COVID-19 came and production stopped and plans had to be changed. So a couple of months later I used their awesome product during the BASICS shoot and THE MILLERS. Also have a pair myself and really love them too! So here is all about QURC, one of the coolest start-ups of 2020 if you ask me!
QURC, what is it? Where can one find it? And who is it meant for?
QURC is an Amsterdam based fashion label established in 2019. Our mission is to show the world that it is possible to create durable, comfortable and fashionable apparel without using any kind of animal products. With our own fondness and enthusiasm for sneakers, the choice for our first line of products was quickly made. However, we aim to expand our collection to a range of many high quality items in the future. Who is running QURC?
Nice to meet you, we are Farbod Sattarian and Thomas Bruinsma. 2 young ambitious entrepreneurs, holding great plans for the future of the fashion industry. After completing our studies in 2019 we decided to pursue our dreams of entrepreneurship. From the very first moment it was clear to us that we wanted to engage in a business that has social impact, contribute something to society and in which we could let our creativity run wild. Although we didn't lack passion and energy, our background in law and hotel management made us rookies in the fashion industry. In spite of that, we developed rapidly and are learning every day.
How and when did you get started with the idea of QURC? Was there something in particular that inspired you to do so?
When it comes to mid- and high-end sneakers, we experienced a big gap between environmentally aware brands and the established order. In terms of style and comfort, all these vegan or sustainable fashion labels could not match the brands that are often labeled as stylish. We couldn't understand that there was such a strange taboo around vegan fashion and it was striking to see that no sneakers were made that could match the big brands in terms of style and quality.
We felt compelled to come up with a sustainable and high-quality alternative to challenge the status quo, without compromising on any of the characteristics that you would expect from a high end sneakers.
How would you define QURCs’ style?
We work with a minimalistic philosophy and create timeless essentials. We try to implement sustainability in various forms at QURC. Trend-sensitive, constantly changing designs contribute to the big problems that characterizes the fashion industry nowadays: overproduction and consumers having to get rid of items that are still in good condition just because they are ‘out of fashion’. By creating a collection of 'essentials' in which minimalism prevails, we strive to let our customers enjoy our products as long and as responsibly as possible.
What inspirers you?
We are greatly inspired by the movement that is currently emerging, in which young ambitious entrepreneurs each contribute in their own unique way to providing a better and more conscious option for the consumer.
What are your plans for the future?
The crazy time in which we currently find ourselves makes it difficult to set specific and time-bound goals. However, the first stores are now being equipped with QURC sneakers, and there are some great collaborations coming up. Our biggest goal at the moment is to make QURC an established player on the Dutch market, so that consumers have the easy option of making a sustainable choice.
What materials do you use?
As the name suggests, the main material we use for our sneakers is cork. In fact, the entire upper part of the sneakers is made of cork. In our search for durable leather replacements, cork clearly showed itself to be the best alternative. It is in no way inferior to leather, and is even better in some areas.
Besides using cork for the upper, we use recycled rubber for the soles and a comfortable microfiber lining. We are constantly trying to improve our products, and as a result, the current collection is already more comfortable and durable than the first collection.
In what way do you work sustainable?
As you may notice, sustainability is addressed in various forms at QURC. We attach great importance to the origin of our products and the raw materials we use. Our main material cork is a renewable resource, and peeling the bark of the cork oak contributes to preserving the cork forests. In our opinion, however, sustainability is broader than the products you create. It is a common thread that runs through all our choices and actions. for example, the working conditions at the factory and the fair price that cork farmers get paid for their products.
What is/ are your personal favourite piece(s)?
Farbod: ‘That's a tough question haha.. I love the Storm Grey Essentials, that colour really expresses the unique character of the sneakers. On the other hand, I also like to wear the Onyx Black Essentials when I am going for a more classic look.’
Thomas: ‘My favourite pieces are most definitely the Marble Whites, it’s a very clean colour and yet closest to the natural colour of cork!’