IKEA continues the collaboration with social entrepreneurs around the world – producing precious, handcrafted products while creating jobs. With VÄLGÖRANDE collection, IKEA is partnering with Bucharest-based social enterprise Mesteshukar ButiQ, developed to preserve traditional Roma handicrafts, get Roma into the labour market and contribute to the livelihood in Roma community.
“The partnership is about supporting the development Mesteshukar ButiQ is driving and give the artisans an income that makes their and their family’s everyday life easier. At the same time, the collaboration gives IKEA access to knowledge in Roma traditional craft skills and can offer unique pieces to our customers”, says Ann-Sofie Gunnarsson, Partner Development Leader, IKEA of Sweden.
The partnership between IKEA and Mesteshukar ButiQ, dedicated to create jobs and livelihood for Roma, started 2016 and has since then evolved. During the past year IKEA has been working close with the social enterprise to support the build-up of production, developing and securing the quality of the products.
Through the long-term collaboration, Mesteshukar ButiQ gets the tools to build their competitiveness, develop their business and meet a global market. Meanwhile, IKEA get access to unique knowledge in traditional handicraft skills.
“This is a new way of working, for us and for IKEA, so it’s a learning process. If we get it to work also in the long run it can be something amazing – and I’m confident it can be done”, Andrei M Georgescu, Manager, Mesteshukar ButiQ.
Mesteshukar ButiQ is working with a total number of 22 artisans, four artisans have been working with IKEA for the collection. The coming years, Mesteshukar ButiQ’s capacity will increase and the artisans will produce pieces for two upcoming IKEA collections.
The collection for example include baskets made with wicker weaving technique and a honey dipper. In addition to the wooden items made in Romania, the collection includes ceramics and handwoven textiles made by social entrepreneurs in Doi Tung Thailand.
The VÄLGÖRANDE collection will be available in selected stores in Portugal, Netherlands, UK, Ireland, and Norway, from October 2018.