Presents in the Post prezzie giveaway!


So it’s Christmas time and the lovely Presents in the Post team is giving away a lovely present (which will, of course, come in the post), but in order to win this present you’ll have to write a few lines of your own story that explains how the present gets from the designer to postboxes around the country. Easy kapeasy.

But you’ll have to be quick because sign-up for Christmas presents on their site ends on Wednesday.

The person who wins can have their choice of either the little girl present, the boy present, or the grown up girl present.

Listen to Raj’s Story for some inspiration and have look around their site. You can post your little story in the comments box below.

Designer bat & ball sets

Lauren Fowler Bat & Ball

Cool bat & ball set. Design by Lauren Fowler from Citymob R199

Bat & Ball Leah Flores

Cool bat & ball set. Design by Leah Flores from Citymob R199

Bat & Ball Sera HollandCool bat & ball set. Design by Sera Holland from Citymob R199

Bat & Ball set by Sera Holland

Cool bat & ball set. Design by Sera Holland from Citymob R199

Ok I’m a bat & ball junkie. So imagine my toe-curling delight when I found these cool bat and ball sets designed by some great local talent.  They’ll make great gifts, but they’re also pretty enough to hang on your wall.

Gifts for under R350. Buy local.

Bon Journal Notebook by Essie Letterpress R199 buy it HERE

Wolf & Maiden wallet R350 from Africandy

Owls R180 for the pair from Nice Find

Skermunkil Design Studio ceramics R200 each @ Kalkbay Co-op (from next weekend)

Dor&Kie Imbuia faset ring R180 from Hello Pretty

Diana Ferreira Vase R308 from Africandy

Paper Jet Fridge Magnet set R159 from Citymob (5 days left)

Sessi Bee Fox and Polar bear bowls R325 each. Available from Vamp.

12 South African Craft Beers R340 from The League of Beers

Remember to buy from local suppliers this Christmas!

So what’s Lauren up to?

Love these lovely new cards and DIY cross stitch sets by Lauren FowlerThe DIY X-stitch kits are a limited edition of 50.
They come in 4 different options:

– Indigo blue thread & white canvas
– Grey thread & white canvas
– White thread & black canvas
– Pink champagne & black canvas

Now available in green and yellow neon as well as glow in the dark white thread, all on black.

All sets are R280 each and can be posted nationwide.

The cards are R25 each or R75 per pack (buy 3 and get 1 free). They’re 95mm x 95mm, printed on 100% recycled paper, blank inside and make the perfect pairing to your gift!

Email to order:

Handmade bags that create opportunities for local women

94 is lovely brand of handcrafted bags that offer training and create employment for ladies in the Port Elizabeth area.

“The 94 Store currently employs 3 woman from Walmer Township on a part time basis. Over the past year, Nora, Lucy and Trudy have learned a number of skills, including sewing and beading and are now working together as a team to produce the quality hand crafted bags that are for sale in the 94 online store.”  (Prices are in Dollars, but you can contact them to find out what the local prices are).

Package Project – Johannesburg >> Sydney

click to enlarge

And this is the package  I sent to my Package Project partner Lauren in Sydney (see previous post for more info about the project).  I loved Lauren’s little stories so much, I’ll definitely incorporate that into my package next year. Here is a list of where I bought everything.

* The Wooden Hearts and Stripey Pencils are from Life Unplugged in Parkhurst:

* Illustrations by Ymke Hemminga:

* Ribbon, Cupcake papers & flags, Blackboard Heart Tags & Pegs from The Selection:

* The Notebook is from the Ikhaya store:

* The wooden bird I bought at a stall at the Kamersvol Geskenke Market, but I think it’s by Millk:

A Handmade Christmas

Crocheted stones by Love Lolla (Cape Town)

Dear Deer Artwork by Terry Angelos R695 framed. Available at the Malva pop-up shop in Durban.

Wooden Bunnies by Millk R120-R150

Birdie pin (nice stocking fillers) with vintage playing card by Cupcake Couture R25

Acrylic, Watercolour and Ink on Wood by Helga McLeod all the way from Bethulie.

Kushn Laptop Sleeve. Designed by Greer Valley + Thembalezwe Mntambo. Made in Cape Town.
Hand-cut Sterling Silver Necklace by Melody Watson from Cape Town.

A lovely Handmade Manifesto I found on a blog called Hello Handmade


Mikado is a range of fun decals, wallpaper and gift wrap by illustrator Maaike Bakker (who we’ve featured HERE before) and her sister Benieke Bakker Lennox.

“We aim to bring you diverse and unique design with the aim to creatively contribute to your lifestyle by lightening up your surroundings. Dress & decorate your walls, define your space & enjoy.”

You can order on their website

Join their Facebook page to stay posted on new designs.

An army of Boobeloobies

I stumbled on Wilmarie Viljoen’s plushies on the Etsy South Africa page on Facebook and contacted her to tell us more about her Boobeloobies. (yes that sounds strange)

What is your background?

I grew up in Pretoria in now live in Noordheuwel in Krugersdorp, Jhb with my husband Johan and my little boy of 2 ½  years named Wian.

I’m actually an artist, I paint in acrylics and water colours, but haven’t had the time the last couple of years.  Still, I needed something to keep me occupied, as I’m a stay at home mommy.

How did you start the Boo!beloobie range?

I’m a bit of a whacky soul, everybody I know I have a nickname for, and I use it, and that is where I got the idea of making a range of very unique, 100 % handmade kids toys/decoration called the BOO!beloobie range.  BOO!beloobie being one of the many nicknames I have for my son!

I started with a rabbit, and people noticed.  Then I got the idea to try out some new critters, and I drew them up, then worked on the patterns, and then made a prototype, which finally turned into the finished products.

I now have an extensive range, and I’m still working on the next ideas.  This year I will also be starting with a painting range that will coincide with the plushies….and also some more unique water colour pieces that will follow a certain pattern, which will be coming soon!  Will be working on a authentic ‘lappop’ in the new year!

I love my little boy, and making these plushies not only gave me an outlet to stay sane whilst being in the company of just kiddies stuff all day long, cartoons being the main feature.  It also gave me an opportunity to make something unique, that people have never seen in any commercial shops.  And the best thing is, I can make one of a kind versions of my toys for people…..I ask people’s opinions, and give them some creative freedom so they feel as part of the project as I am.

Where can we buy your toys?

My toys are currently featured at Hearts Delight in Noordheuwel in Krugersdorp and Eau-la-la Art Café and Trends in Pretoria.

I’m also doing heART in the Garden from the 25th to the 27th of November, as well as “Kamers vol Geskenke”  with Eau-la-la from the 28th up until the 3rd of December, both of these stunning lifestyle markets being in Centurion , Pretoria.

All my links!


My Etsy shop

My Luulla store


Thanks Wilmarie!

Are we there yet? Are we there yet?

There comes a point in a long family road trip when your tired, puffy, little eye has run out of things to spy and you’ve hoarsely sung every Barney song on Barney’s 20 Greatest Hits (six times) and you’d do anything for your kids to be quietly engaged in something that doesn’t involve setting each others’ plaits on fire or chewing a used Band-aid.

Enter the Pencil and Paper Challenge. Paper Jet‘s latest product is a beautifully illustrated book filled with games for children.

The games in this “PENCIL AND PAPER CHALLENGE” include: naughts and crosses, word searches, mazes, lines and dots and spot the difference. You can challenge your bestie and whoever wins gets a cut-out trophy included in the book.

The book is bound, illustrated and designed by Paper Jet. The paper stock used to make this book is called Cocoon Offset – you can read all about its environmentally friendly credentials here. It also comes packaged in a homemade bag.

If you’d like more info on the book contact Paper Jet:

Handmade gifts for under R350

Be Kind Fine bone china mug R150

Recycled plastic disk necklace – Deep Dark Africa online store R185

Scrabble Alphabet 12x12cm R60 each (also custom sizes) – iKhaya

LP Record Buttons – Paper JetR25 each

Lauren Fowler A4 prints R350 each

Lauren Fowler Owlie Tags R30 per pack

Paper Jet Handmade Note books R60 each from Nonna, Abby & Ross, Wolves (prices vary)
A Bird Named Frank Heart Necklaces R180 from The Fringe Arts

Vamp revamped.

Mengsel Pillows R340 each

We’ve been huge fans of the Vamp blog for a long time and we’ve finally got round to chatting to Paula van Niekerk owner of the beautiful Vamp furniture store in Cape Town. They’re in a new space and they now stock lots of local brands such as Skinny Laminx, Lauren Fowler, Isabeaupeep, SMAC Harry, Nicky Page, Moonbasket, Renee Rossouw etc.

So there’s a revamped Vamp. What has changed and what inspired the change?

We had to move from our previous location as the building was sold. It had been coming for quite some time, so after the initial angst, we got really excited at the prospect of moving to a fresh new space. We still focus on our revamped mid – century furniture which is the biggest part of our business and have also have started adding new designers and ranges into the mix that we feel complement our furniture and our vision for Vamp. Other than that, we are in a bigger space which enables us to showcase our wares much better.

Tell us a bit more about your background. 

Vamp is owned by myself and my partner Michael Dodds. My background is in restaurants, and more recently I owned an events management and décor company. Michael is a baker and pastry chef by trade, but has been in the woodwork manufacturing industry for the past 15 years.

 Two years ago, on a weekend away up the West Coast, we found a shop that sold a bit of everything, from clothing and furniture to petrol! What really caught our eye was an incredible selection of vintage furniture that had previously belonged to some or other government department. We spontaneously bought the lot and sent it back to Cape Town on a rather large truck.  We had often spoken about opening a furniture/homeware shop together over the years and with the perfect excuse to actually get off our butts and do it, we opened Vamp a few months later.

You work with a lot of up-and-coming designers do you have any advice for young designers/product designers/artisans who are trying to establish their own brands and who would one day love to sell their wares at Vamp.

There is so much incredible talent around that it can be really tough getting your name out there. Be passionate about what you do, people are drawn to that. Create your own formula, stay focused on your ideas, but don’t be scared to ask for advice and guidance along the way. Work hard, be positive and don’t give up!

The shop is situated on 368 Albert Road (Opposite the Old Biscuit Mill) in Woodstock, Cape Town. Their opening hours are as follows: 09h30 – 16h30 Mondays to Fridays. 08h30 – 15h00 Saturdays.

Join their Facebook page or follow their blog to stay updated on what’s new at Vamp.

Thanks Paula!

Handmade gifts for under R250

One Bud Vase handmade by ceramicist Lisa Firer. R225 each. Available from Deep Dark Africa.

Hand felted cushions. R180 each. Available from Beatnik Bazaar.

Smock dress, 2-3 years.  R195. Available from Skinny Laminx.

Handprinted limited edition dishcloths by Mia Widlake. R90. Available from Abby & Ross.

My Gold Heart necklace by Caera O’Shaughnessy. R180. (10% goes to charity) from one of these online shops.

Birdie gift tags. Set of 10. R75. From Skinny Laminx.

Bearded men and Polar Bears bowls by Sarah Benjamin. R240 each. From The Fringe Arts on Kloof Street.

Abby + Ross

We chatted to Vicky Ross, the owner of Abby & Ross in Parkwood about her charming shop.

“I started the shop in 2008 as joint venture with the owners of Park Cafe next door, Ian and Ro Ziervogel.  My sister and I owned Polish Nail Spa across the way in the Parks Shopping Centre and we all thought that it was essential to fill the vacant store opposite us that felt like an uninviting black hole.

Sourcing beautiful and interesting things is a passion of mine. The store has evolved somewhat – Ian and Ro are no longer involved and we’ve moved away from clothing, which we stocked for a while, to gifting, decor and books for adults and children.

I try and stock interesting handmade and local design. But I do have a certain aesthetic and insist on good quality so I do find myself being fairly selective.

Continue reading

The Fringe Arts pop-up shops

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Fringe Arts sells art through versatile concepts in which we collaborate with integrity with artists and clients in a way that makes business sense.

Based in Cape Town, The Fringe Arts is owned and run by Chantal Louw and Thessa Bos.

One of our core projects is an 100% SA Art & Design Collective. We showcase the collective in POP-UPs, which means that we don’t have a permanent space anywhere, but pop-up temporarily in empty spaces or as part of exhibitions.

Products of our artists and designers are Africa-inspired, but not Africa-themed. Each piece is locally designed, manufactured and handmade.

Not wanting to open an art gallery nor a design shop we decided to combine the two concepts in a way that strengthens both aspects of the industry: a (pop-up) shop|gallery in which the visitor can browse art and design without the intimidation of the white cube.

Our focus is on the demographic of people largely not catered for by the current art and design market; people, locally and internationally, who love art and design and have a limited art budget; collectors who desire work by established and emerging artists and designers that is conceptually strong, skillfully crafted and local but not curio.

Is there any chance the Pop-up store will be making its appearance in Jo’burg?

O the joy if we could! We would love to pop-up in Jo’burg. Not only to meet our fabulous fans up there and to see what incredible stuff Jo’burg is up to (we read the most fantastic things). It would give Chantal a great excuse to haunt her old hang outs and catch up with family and Thessa time with loved ones in Pretoria. So any spaces who would host us – we are ready to pack! It takes us two days to get it all up and one day to take it all down. Continue reading