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Local designers get exposure at V&A Watershed

Jul 08 2016 19:37

Cape Town - The Cape Craft + Design Institute (CCDI) has launched its revamped, new-look store at the Watershed, the craft and design hub at the V&A Waterfront. The store features unique, handmade products from over 40 talented local producers ranging from fashion, jewellery and accessories to ceramics and textiles.

The designers use the platform to gain retail experience and they also get coaching and mentorship to learn how to sustainably grow their businesses in the long term.

Selection criteria

CCDI has over 500 members on its database and it invited them to apply to showcase their products in the store. "Once all the applications were received, a pre-selection process was done in which we looked at the quality of the product, the designer/producer’s ability to supply small orders, suitability for that specific retail market, and appropriate price points for the market," Taryn Nutt co-ordinator for the CCDI Watershed store said.

"Special preference was given to emerging businesses and fresh, new products that had not yet been exposed to the retail market in Cape Town. It was also important to select products that are unique and not similar to those already being sold by other producers at the Watershed", Nutt said.

The designers currently showcasing their products include:

Sikho Mququ of Ckho Ceramiques who is retailing his ceramic range for the first time as a way of testing his product further after a successful run as part of this year’s Design Indaba Emerging Creatives, a developmental platform for young creatives who have relatively little industry exposure.

(Candlesticks by Zulu Love Bean owned by Belinda Beckley. Picture, supplied.)

Samrid Mhlungu of Yenza Design who is selling rhino paper towel holders, which he prototyped in the CCDI’s Product Support Space, a well-resourced laboratory space available to members for product refinement, prototyping and sample-making.

There are also a number of jewellery/accessory designers including Roche van den Berg of  Roche.Recycle.Relove; Natascha van Niekerk Fine Photography, Nondwe Nyathi, owner of Indwe Designs On the fashion front are items from Bokang Lehabe, owner of Bookha Creations and GoRD.

(Leather neckpieces by Indwe Designs owned by jewellery designer Nondwe Nyathi. Picture: supplied.)

Adding variety to the offerings in the store there is iced coffee from Swart and various teas from Enmasse Tea Merchants for the beverage connoisseurs.  

The CCDI has also partnered with Yoco, a company that has developed a cloud-based point of sale system and a mobile card reader that helps small businesses accept card payments quickly and easily.

Woodstock-based designer, Cameron Barnes, who specialises in creating handmade custom-designed furniture, was the shop-fitter who helped to create a fresh, new look for the CCDI store.

(Jacket created from upcycled materials by designer Tsidi Ramofole of GoRD, embroidered leather bag by Hamethop and fabric dolls by Zuko Dolls. Picture, supplied.)

The store is one of the ways in which the CCDI, as a sector development agency, supports enterprise development by facilitating access to market opportunities locally and internationally for small creative businesses.

Read more about the CCDI and its services at www.ccdi.org.za

news  |  entrepreneurs  |  small business


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