Sven Algoet (51) has been designing and making lighting by the name Luminello for 11 years now. The story is about a boy from a small village, with big dreams to distinguish himself from the rest. And so does Luminello does, by choosing durable materials - brass and borosilicate glass - and by creatinbg a simple and elegant style.
Sven was 14 when he got his first lamp design on. “It felt like my Edison moment. At home, I screw everything apart with my screwdriver, experimented on it. When you finally manage to turn on a light, you will never forget that. ”
How does a young teenager get entangled in electronics? “If you grow up in the small village of Gottem (Deinze, Belgium), in a modest family, with few prospects, you need a great passion to get ahead. And I wanted to move forward. ”
Climbing the ladder
Sven spent the first 10 years of his professional career with Elektra (now Rexel), a major player in electrical equipment and lighting. And he got noticed there, because later he was roped in by BTicino, an Italian manufacturer of switches and home automation, where he worked for another 10 years.
That 20 years of experience did not bring Sven any harm. He made many contacts in the sector, including Italian material producers and the better lighting specialist shops in Belgium. “I saw my chance. I worked on my first designs for a year, started Luminello and after three months my regular clientele was ready. ”
Durable, timeless and elegant
While working in the industry, Sven also realized what he wanted to do differently. In a world where big players are making less and less sustainable material choices, but prices are rising, he wants to be a countermovement.
Sven therefore makes sustainable choices. It works with copper, brass and borosilicate glass (also known as Pyrex). These are raw materials that hardly wear out. “You don't easily come across plastics in my studio. A Luminello luminaire should last forever. ”
And the latter refers not only to the longevity of the designs, but also to the style, which Sven describes as sleek, simple and elegant. Each design has the typical, timeless Luminello stamp. ”
Relax in nature
Where does Sven get his inspiration from? The answer is as short as it is simple: outside! “Nature is a huge source of inspiration. It often happens that I get my best ideas while cycling or traveling. For example, the shape of the Lido collection was inspired by the wing of a seabird I spotted on the Lido di Venezia. I mimicked that curvature in brass. ”
“I am a hard worker, but I also have to slow down enough to be creative again afterwards. I cycle a lot, in the beautiful Flemish Ardennes. And I like to travel with my wife and two children. Italy is a favorite destination, but we are also looking further with our hiking backpacks. Indonesia was a top destination. ”
Once the inspiration is there, the process to a finished product proceeds quite quickly, on average 3 to 4 months. “We can respond quickly with our small scale. I first draw the design in pencil. Then I consult with my Italian material producers whether the design is feasible, in terms of price, production and saleability. On 10 prototypes, 6 don't make it. ”
You might think it was a huge waste. But at Luminello, no material is lost. The prototypes are also sold in annual warehouse sales. That is the perfect opportunity to get a completely unique piece in your home.
And the house of Sven itself, which is also full of own sustainable creations. “My home is kind of my test room. Something dares to change the interior. Fortunately, my family loves that. ”