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French, Cheese and Wine? The true reason for choosing cork fabric

Video Highlights

00:10 - The fabric we use at FRiLuk
00:37 - The known about cork
01:00 - Brief overview of the cork harvesting process
01:28 - How does the cork fabric feel
02:13 - What's really cool about cork
02:55 - Focus on the uniqueness of the cork
03:45 - What is great about being unique
04:40 - Example of a purse made of natural cork
05:00 - Challenge of customer expectations
05:45 - The reality and beauty of wooden or cork products
06:20 - Quality vs Natural
07:00 - FRiLuk is the first to release an aluminium and cork credit card holder
07:31 - The sun is shining :-)

Video Transcript

Hi guys, Laurent Bleu from FRiLuk, so in today's video I want to talk a little bit more why we have chosen the cork fabric to make our products.

You know that we do cork, we do also bamboo but our main fabric is the cork; so people used to make fun of me because... yeah well, you know, I am French... I love wine, and obviously... fascinated by cork and said, "Yeah! I am going to do cork products!"

Well actually it hit me one evening when I was uncorking a bottle of wine, that's true
and I told the story on my blog. But the reason is... you know, I care about the environment, and of course, the cork fabric is good for the environment, it is sustainable, eco friendly, so yeah... people might think that it's also the reason why I have done that...which is true. 

But there are certain things that people don't know about the cork fabric and we actually made a nice post on our blog to explain better how the cork fabric is made, how the cork is harvested and why actually it's kind of an amazing process because once you have stripped out the bark from the cork tree, it regrows, and it becomes mature more or less after 9 years depending upon the type of cork tree we are talking about.

Anyway, what is also great about the cork is how it feels, people you see when they see, mostly online, the first time a cork product they don't really know what to expect...because you know...they know cork with cork board or stoppers for the wine, so they fear that it's kind of feel a bit like wood, not really soft and actually it is the absolute opposite.

I used to say that it is as soft as a brie cheese! My goodness me, those French people! Wine, cheese... yeah I know, I know! People are making fun of me all the time!
Anyway, I took some products that we have, you see we have those little babies that arrived yesterday but what I really really like about the cork is that they are unique.

I mean... you know, when we produce 100 units of a wallet or a purse, or a card holder... we received those yesterday, I am super excited about it. But what is absolutely great is that each one of them is UNIQUE! Because the cork layer that we put on it, the cork sheet that we used to produce those products, there are not two alike, I mean there are not two identical.

The pattern is different, the grain is different, you see... let me show you... You see that one? Ok, let me take another one...Look at these, you see? They are different. Look at that, amazing!

And that's what I like about it. You know I was shopping with my wife last weekend and we were in front of a shop, looking at handbags, from a very known brand by the way. But the thing is you know, there were 3 handbags on a shelf, and I told my wife: "I mean, look at that! It's amazing, they are exactly the same! To the details, to the details! Absolutely amazing..."

The colour, the aspect of...I mean... it was leather, ok but... the aspect of the leather, it was exactly the same, and the thing is... people kind of get used to it, you know...
I am not like that, I don't know about you but I like to be unique, and you know if you ever got the chance to look at our website, that's what we promote as well, we want to be unique, we like to be unique, I don't want to have what everybody has, I don't want to do what everybody does...and usually I tend to do the opposite of what people are doing...and sometimes I am taking risks by doing that but you know that's life, we have one life and I like to enjoy it, so I think that it is also my personal motivation and even in our business FRiLuk, we've made decisions that people were thinking that we are absolutely crazy to do that, because you know we don't follow the path, we don't follow the pattern, we don't do everything by the book.

Anyway, back to the cork, yeah so it is unique, and that's what we like about it! You see I've taken also, as an example those wallets, so look at that. You see that's our purse, and I have taken another one, so if you look at them, you see? they are different. Look at that! So basically if you get one of those wallets, it's going to be a very unique piece that you will own.

Sometimes it's kind of challenging because one customer was telling me: "Well, I have received my wallet, but it does not look like the picture"... Yeah, well... huh? "As expected", I would say :-)

You see that's what I was explaining, people get used to having something that looks the same than what they've seen in a shop or what they've seen online, and I am not talking about screen resolution that can basically make the appearance of product different.

It's really like you know people they go to a website, they see a product, they like it, they buy it, and then they expect to get exactly the same but when you do wooden products, and not necessarily bamboo, whatever wooden product, when you do products made of natural cork, well that's expected! And that's the beauty of it.

People are telling me, well you know there is.. if I take this one for instance I think that it has a little yeah a little brown mark here, well that's how the cork is, you cannot expect a perfect product when you buy those type of products. You see it needs to be a quality product, absolutely, I mean quality is super important for us and we will never ever launch a product if we are not 100% satisfied with the quality. But that's not a quality issue you know. That's how the fabric is and those are handmade products, you know each worker has his own way of working, so I think that imperfections need to be celebrated and especially when it's handmade, it's kind of "on purpose", and really for me, that's the beauty of it.

So anyway guys, if you never had a chance to get to know how a cork product feels, well give it a shot, honestly it's super warm, you see those aluminium case for instance, I mean that's the perfect example. FRiluk is the first one to release this kind of product that are usually made from an aluminium case, but we have added this cork layer, it gives a warm feeling, it protects the aluminium case and all of a sudden, that product becomes your very own, it is a unique piece because if we were doing a simple aluminium case, well then everybody has the same!

Anyway guys, I think you got the point, I wish you an amazing day, I am looking by the window, the sun is shining! In England the sun is shining!

You take care of yourself and I see you in the next video.

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