Bunarandu / Vintage Gems for You/ Sers

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Meet the fragile but super confident and gorgeous models of our today’s story. All made of glass, coming in different shapes and colours. All carrying serious baggage of stories, flights and roads they were on while coming to Bunarandu. An online place and space for vintage gems Laura Jaraminaite finds all over the world and awakens them for a new life. While the machine of producing-using-throwing away new stuff is spinning hard, we talk with Laura about being a bit more sustainable and creative enough to re-use. Believe me, it’s not rocket science. Anybody can do that. 

13 March, 2019

by RINGAILE PAPARTYTE

Bunarandu, so, what’s the story morning glory– when and how was it born?

I’ve always been keen on design items and home decor goods. Back in my childhood, I remember having a funny addiction to collect little jewellery boxes so each of my jewel pieces could have its own place to lay. So, I guess it’s not a surprise that until this day I love to search and find beautiful things. It’s been a while since I got this admiration for vintage and second-hand items – clothes, home goods, furniture, etc. 

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What really got me involved in Bunarandu is that I was travelling a lot with modelling jobs and so I had the opportunity to discover many hidden and interesting stores or local flea markets. Finally, a year ago Bunarandu collection idea was born. I realized that some shelves at my house look like a museum exposition and it’s not beautiful anymore. I decided to turn this passion into something continuous and exposed to everyone. 

 

Would you call yourself a collector or is it more about re-sharing? 

I guess something in between those two! I’m constantly searching for items for my collection. Sometimes, as a true gem collector I find myself walking in the weirdest places looking for that needle in a haystack, waking up with the sun to keep up with markets early working hours and most importantly to be there first! That becomes a tricky part in the middle of cold winters as finding that one special item requires long, slow and patient walks. Fortunately, this part truly excites me, and I continue the process with great vim and love, when I take a camera, create product pictures and show it to the world later.

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Would you like to add more different findings, maybe art or some other things, to the basket of your collectables in the future?

As time goes on, I realize I’m becoming bigger and a bigger supporter of second-hand stuff, therefore I’m thinking often of how can my project grow in the future. Now, in the beginning, I’d like to settle with the minimal-sized things. Today I am attached mostly to certain kind of glass creatures, but I’m pretty sure this will vary, and someday it would be lovely to have another collection of some furniture and other interior details like lamps (I’ve seen gorgeous ones!), coffee tables, mirrors, chairs, etc. That could also include drawings, artworks or decor details with any particular function. Eventually, I suppose, I’ll let this project evolve naturally, maybe depending a bit on the taste of that period, findings themselves and their relevance in terms of style. I should admit that my own style and perception is altering constantly, so I wouldn’t be afraid for my collection to develop and just go along with me. 

 

What is sustainability to you? Maybe you lead a sustainable life yourself?

I see sustainability as helping the Earth to cope with global ecological threats while being conscious about the environment and understanding my own impact on it. I find it hard to devote myself fully to that, as some things had become quite shamefully unavoidable for me, for example using a car frequently or from time to time taking a cup of coffee away, although I try to take other contributing actions like recycling, reducing waste, choosing sustainable goods and services, and so on. 

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So, I suggest, if we all give our part to this process, that’s already great. And with my project, I invite people to add some variety to their homes by giving a new life for a thoroughly selected, well maintained and unique item, instead of purchasing a newly made thing from the army of same ones. In the end, I am not terribly obsessed with the idea of sustainability, I just think that the balance, awareness and taking some action is important.

 

To your opinion, is collecting second-hand things sustainable itself? Do we really always need a new business or a brand if we want to keep up with a sustainable way of life?

Nowadays the amount of new production is so immense that probably half of this stuff ends up useless, thrown or given away, we like it or not. Therefore, we can make a choice to buy some things that have already been made and left unused and, thus, help the planet by manufacturing less. 

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I’m certain that my project is a sustainable business solution, even though it’s impossible to avoid things like packaging to be both an enjoyable presentation and a safe dispatch. But let’s not get crazy – everyone wants to create, do businesses and share their works, so the important question here is how to minimize the bad impact on Earth according to our capabilities while also enjoying things we do. 

 

Stories behind your findings – how important are these to you? Or maybe you want to create totally unrelated fresh new start for these objects?

This strongly depends on the situation when getting the object. Funny enough, most of the sellers I encounter are determined to force me into buying whatever the item is, but of course, some of them are willingly revealing me the background and discussing the past of the item with me. Some of them have already re-bought objects to their collections from somebody else. Then, the stories are being left far away in the past. I personally like to create my own imaginative character, who supposedly had and used the item. 

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Anyway, for me the more interesting aspect is how to apply the findings in our modern environment, how can the item and the old-aura of it complement our today’s interior. Trends always come back, therefore certain old things can be just the right ones when decorating spaces. And these probably preserve some mysterious history and stronger energy that you could hardly find in freshly produced objects. 

 

Let’s talk about your latest non-glass findings, that really surprised or inspired you, let it be a new song or a little chat with some stranger on the street?

I’m now sitting and answering the questions on a terrace in Athens, with a spectacular view of Acropolis, and a bird lands in front of me, on the side of that ancient building letting me take funny pictures of it for quite some time. That makes me laugh and understand again that every moment has something particular, and each finding can inspire, I just need to keep my eyes open and be a part of it. 

If to be more specific about your question, I’ve recently left the city for few days and went to our peaceful Lithuanian seaside Nida, where I delved deeply into myself, read Marina’s Abramović biography book and enjoyed the winter emptiness and beauty of this magical place, greeting and seeing off the sun, with no wish to be anywhere else in the world, just there that moment.

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Explore more precious findings by Bunarandu.