There is more to glass than meets the eye – and this week’s interview is with Karolina Obroniecka Perez-Maura, founder of Lagom Glassware. This glassware has been designed in London, handmade in Czech Republic and has been made to last a lifetime. Welcome to the blog, Karolina!
Hello! My name is Karolina Obroniecka Perez-Maura I am 28 y.o. I am originally from Poland but I was born in France. While my background was originally in Graphic Design, I now also hold a degree in Product and Industrial Design degree from UAL Central Saint Martins where I currently work as an Associate Lecturer. I started Lagom Handmade Glassware back in 2022 while being 8 months pregnant with my first baby. There was something about completing my dream of creating my own company before becoming a new mum. Mission accomplished!
What inspired the creation of “Lagom Handmade Glassware”?
The thought of creating Lagom Handmade Glassware was born after I had graduated (2020). During my last year of studies I worked on a really fun ice cream project during which I discovered borosilicate glass and had the chance to meet some incredible cratfs people who showed me everything there is to know about scientific glassblowing. I did go into working in the industry for over a year after graduating. However I got so tired of re mote working (covid times!) that I started to work on setting up my company again. Finally in Q1 of 2022 I just went for it.
I’m always interested in the origins of company names – so what does “Lagom” mean and why did you pick that name?
Lagom actually means “just the right amount” in Swedish. I absolutely love this concept as it re the balance that I try to achieve in my professional (and private life) between beauty, utility and environmental impact.
You have a lovely range of glassware – I particularly like your Vivienne decanter. What designs are proving popular amongst your customers so far?
All of them have been quite successful so far but people definitely love buying sets. The Alexandra set and Bernice sets are the most popular – especially with fluted glass.
Do you have a particular favourite design?
The Eileen glass is my absolute favourite, it was the first one that I created and I guess that I am just emotionally attached to it!
Your glassware is handmade in the Czech Republic using borosilicate glass – what is borosilicate glass?
Borosilicate glass tubing is a type of scientific glass that is mostly used for research laboratories and hospitals due to its impressive resistance to thermal shock as well as the fact that its chemical composition makes it harder than most common types of glass, allowing it to be fabricated into more intricate and complex shapes. For our glasses it means that you can use them for both hot and cold drinks and put them safely in the dishwasher.
However what matters the most to me, is the uniqueness of each piece. Each one is entirely handmade, making each piece slightly different than the other with its minor imperfections.
I love that each product is named after an incredible woman that has shaped the land- scape of art, design and society! So, hypothetically speaking , if you were to pick a woman to represent your brand, who would you pick & why?
I feel very inspired and respectful of every one of them but if I were to pick just one, I would have to pick Isatou Ceesay or as they call her the “Queen of recycling”. She is a Gambian, an incredibly impressive woman that founded a social enterprise that is helping to fight plastic pollution and em powering women and young people to gain economic independence.
As you are based in London, are your products available to purchase overseas?
I am based in London but the products are handmade in the Czech Republic. I do ship overseas though.
Have you always wanted to have an artistic career or did your career aspirations lay elsewhere?
I have always been a very creative person. I have always liked to draw, paint and would hand make all of my gifts as a child/teenager! I did want to go into the History of Arts and interior design at some point but then I decided to study Graphic Design and then Product and Industrial Design.
Personal now – what outfits and shoes would you normally be found wearing?
99% of the time you will find me wearing jeans, a shirt or simple blue or grey sweater and white sneakers (usually Vera).
Do you have any favourite shops or online sites?
I always try to shop locally and favour small shops but THE HOME OF SUSTAINABLE THINGS comes to mind and AndHand for stationery and Bothanique workshop for plants.
What’s next on your clothes/shoe wish list?
Summer is around the corner so some some espadrilles for those warm nights! I’ve got my eye on a couple of very cute pairs from Alohas.
Boots or Shoes?
Shoes, sneakers to be more specific (almost always). As a mum of a 1 year it’s all about comfort! I would go for heeled boots for a date night though.
Links you would like to share e.g. website/facebook/twitter etc so that readers can find out more about Lagom Glassware.
Thanks Karolina for enlightening us on the subject of glass and you have designed some very stylish sets indeed.
All photographs have been published with kind permission from Karolina Obroniecka Perez -Maura