Morakot “Kheaw” and Piyarat “Yui” Yosthamrong, the founders of Ars-d-sine, are alumni of Chiang Mai University’s Faculty of Fine Arts. During Morakot’s final years in university, he started to think about a career path that would fit his independent lifestyle and decided that running his own business was the best answer. The faculty had a “Fine Arts flea market,” where he could test the market with the notebooks and bags he started making. After receiving a positive response, he partnered up with his best friend, Piyarat, who shared a similar vision. The two progressively developed their products using recycled and mixed materials. They experimented in the two years before graduation, learning and gaining from experience. Eventually, they set up Ars-d-sine after graduation, using the Latin word “Ars”, meaning art, to denote their passion. Currently, the company has two brands: Greenies & Co and KHEAW.
Morakot and Piyarat love to design. They enjoy craftworks including candle art, woodworking and sa papermaking, but they choose to focus on creating stationery products. At first, they used materials such as hemp, handwoven fabrics and sa paper. Wanting to include leather as a material, they decided to learn leathercraft and as a result were later able to expand their product line with wallets, bags and gadget cases.
Two decades before, before the internet was widely available, exhibitions were the main way to reach out to customers. They started out exhibiting at local fairs in Chiang Mai such as Gift Fair, before moving up to national fairs like BIG+ BIH, where they gained customers from overseas such as Europe, Japan and Korea. The company rapidly began to thrive due to its unique product designs made of local materials that looked simple but elegant, having a minimal style that was less common than it is today.
Apart from marketing their own products, Ars-d-sine also produces for foreign brands. It is not typical outsourcing, however, for the company works closely with customers, treating them like partners and developing products that are tailor-made for their customer. Morakot said that customers approach them because they already like their products, but that they still have to present new products that fit their customers’ concepts and let them feel that they also own the designs. The company emphasizes working very closely with customers as if they are running a business together.
“I like working this way. It’s much more fun than just outsourcing. It’s like I’m running multiple shops,”
Over the past 20 years, the quality, function and the modern yet simple designs have been consistent. Their product lines have been diversified to include bags, hats, shoes and apparel to add to the stationery. You can have a look at their cool craftworks at Greenies & Co, 1st floor, One Nimman, Nimmanhaemin, Chiang Mai.