Dezeen Magazine

Stolab's wooden furniture is "designed to live forever"

The second instalment of Dezeen's three-part Stolab Stories video series explores Stolab's heritage and expertise in creating solid-wood furniture.

Stolab, a Swedish manufacturer of solid-wood furniture, was founded in 1907.

In an exclusive video interview with Dezeen, the brand's owner and CEO Martin Johansson explained the history of the brand and its approach to creating furniture using wood from the forests that surround its factory in Smålandsstenar, Sweden.

Stolab solid wood furniture
Martin Johansson is the owner and CEO of Stolab

"When we look at forests or wooden products, we have a great respect for that," he said. "We also realise how much forest you need in order to get superior quality out of it."

"It's an important part of our culture and our surroundings. It's a unique place, which we need to take very good care of."

Stolab solid wood furniture
All design and production processes take place in the same location

Since the brand was founded, its methods of production have changed drastically, but according to Johansson its local focus and approach to craftsmanship have remained consistent.

"Back in 1907, obviously, the work was quite labour intensive," he said. "We had a big workforce, we did similar products, but we did everything by hand."

"We've increased the number of chairs we make today. We've also invested in the most modern machines you can buy for solid wood furniture factories. Same setting, same location but a completely different and more modern way to produce the furniture."

Stolab solid wood furniture
Stolab is a Swedish manufacturer of solid-wood furniture

Dezeen also interviewed Annika Mårtensson, export manager at Stolab, alongside a number of other members of staff.

"I think Stolab has a great team," said Mårtensson. "They appreciate our Scandinavian design, the classic, the timeless, the sustainable choice, and also the knowledge and the certainty that everything is produced here in Sweden in our own factory."

Stolab solid wood furniture
Stolab has been operating in Smålandsstenar, Sweden, since 1907

Johansson emphasised how Stolab is able to maintain a high level of quality control with sourcing and manufacturing taking place in one location.

"We have the complete value chain of the furniture here in our hands," said Johansson. "So we have full control of that, which I think is a key ingredient."

The brand's oversight of its supply chains allows it to pay close attention to its environmental impact, and it aims to prevent unnecessary waste by creating furniture that stands the test of time.

"The furniture is designed to live forever," said Peter Bernroth, Stolab's head of production.

Rasmus Rask, the brand's wood processing lead, outlined the company's approach to corporate responsibility: "Be a good role model. That will inspire others to do the same."

Stolab solid wood furniture
Jonas Lindvall designed the Miss Holly chair for Stolab

Dezeen and Stolab launched Stolab Stories in September with a video focusing on some of the brand's key designs and celebrating 80 years of its Lilla Åland chair.

Partnership content

This article was written as part of a partnership with Stolab. Find out more about our partnership content here.