Research Unit is Utilitarian Lifestyle Brand who design Elevated, Sustainable Basic Fashion for Women and Men as well as responsibly crafted Travel Goods, made in South Africa.
Our products are designed through careful use and balance of materials, considering each form and it's function with acute attention to detail and consideration.
EMPOWERING COMMUNITIES MAKING FEWER PRODUCTS, BETTER
"We work with communities in Cape Town and South Africa to empower skilled people, especially women, by working closely with them to craft, perfect and create a superior quality, sustainable and thoughtfully designed product.
"We believe that one of the greatest forms of sustainability must be to give back to our community, to keep the industry and skills within it, alive and our economy thriving.
Although we’d love our customers to own our carefully considered items we make, we also believe that fewer products, made better, can be treasured for a long time, mainly to preserve the quality level and standard of every piece made from a simple t-shirt to a hand-crafted bag. We not about mass production."
With our travel pieces, we observe the age-old traditions of Japanese craftsmanship, for each of our South African-made products, while applying innovative technology and industrial design experience, to create products we trust are built to last for generations."
Research Unit began on a bedroom floor by Founder, Erin-Lee Petersen and later joined by Co-Founder and husband, Chad Petersen. Their mission from the beginning, was to learn high-level skills of making goods to high standards and at a superior quality to compete with the rest of the world.
With an equal passion for good design and innovation with the lowest level of resources available, they resorted to YouTube. They took the time to research and document each step during their design and development process, to offer you a well made product at superior quality and have done even more to enable these products to be made by individuals who come from a previously disadvantaged life.
"We taught our staff skills we learnt ourselves and continue to find more communities to work with in South Africa. We believe that innovation, good design and very fine craftsmanship go hand-in-hand."
The multiple-award-winning creative duo have had an innovative approach to business from the very start, raising their initial capital from the sale of an iPhone 4, they took out with a 24-month contract when no formal institutions would support, whilst collectively working in Broadcasting, Modeling, Industrial Design Consultancies and Luxury Retail for several years.