"My parents taught me to 'live with purpose.' I started to design tableware from wood scraps and then got my neighbors involved in the work. They are mostly mothers in my neighborhood."
"I'm Hasna Dewi Strohal. I was born in Jogyakarta in 1988. I feel very lucky to come from a city renowned as a center of education and culture. It is a home to almost all classical Javanese fine art and folk art such as batik, traditional dance, classic keraton — a noble-themed dramatic opera, gamelan music and shadow puppet shows. Perhaps my hobbies were influenced by my hometown, as I like traveling, photography, writing and reading poetry.
"When I was single, I worked as a documentary filmmaker from 2005 to 2010, first as a researcher then as the producer.
"A part of this working journey that I love is the research. Here, from no information at all, you can source and explore until you get enough to start. It's wonderful that you cannot have your own opinion. There can be no adjustments and you must be open-minded to see all the facts and pour them into film scenes. The most memorable film I made is about the conflict in Aceh on Sumatera Island in West Indonesia. I was involved with women who joined the local troops for their ideology but, happily, everything ended by reunification with the government.
"In 2010, I got married and moved to Dubai. We have two lovely sons. While I was in Dubai, I saw opportunities for a business in furniture. I started to learn a lot about furniture.
"When my family decided to move back to Jogyakarta, I started doing some trading and then opened our own furniture workshop in 2013. Looking at a lot of small pieces of wood leftover from the furniture, I thought hard about finding a way to recycle these scraps into something valuable.
"At this point, I realize that my parents' way of thinking affects my point of view about life. They taught me to 'live with purpose.' I started to design tableware from wood scraps and then got my neighbors involved in the work. They are mostly mothers in my neighborhood.
"Today, we continue crafting furniture and also make tableware for resorts and restaurants in Indonesia."