South Africa has a vibrant entrepreneurial spirit, which you’ll notice everywhere, from people selling all kinds of things at traffic lights to the range of bespoke and handmade designer products that are now more easily available online than ever before.
With a lot of creative and entrepreneurial energy centred around Joburg and Cape Town, here are some of our favourites from each city (and there are certainly a lot more!).
1. Lulu And Marula
A business started up in Hyde Park alongside a career in advertising, Jesslyn Schlamm has created a range of handcrafted body products, all with a distinct focus on natural ingredients.
Try the Calming Balm for a relaxing transition into sleep.
2. Soy Lites
Soya candles are a popular alternative to overly scented and mass produced candles, and the range of Soy Lites are made right here in Melville.
Try the different range of scents to suit your mood.
Something similar: Also have a look at Melissa and Louise candles.
3. Saint D’Ici
A newly launched natural range of perfume, Saint D’Ici is made in Johannesburg, with scents sourced locally when possible, but with a range of other scents from around the world to complement the range.
Try the combination of the cedar and burnt orange natural scent for an uplifting, earthy feel.
4. Simon And Mary
A range of hats that has made wearing hats more accessible to the local market, Simon and Mary hats are handcrafted in Germiston and offer a variety of styles for both men and women.
5. Damn Good Looking
A handcrafted mirror making business evolved into a passion for screenprinting and textile design when Jennifer Bradley decided to handprint all the bags for the mirrors she sold, with the help of a family friend. Damn Good Looking now makes both mirrors and a range of patterned accessories.
Similar: Also have a look at the range of mirrors made by Dark Horse.
5. Carrol Boyes
A household name in South Africa, Carrol Boyes started out as a range of pewter and stainless steel kitchen and homeware and has now evolved into an iconic South African brand of crockery and a variety of other lifestyle accessories.
Great for gifts and wedding presents!
6. Skinny La Minx
A popular textile designer, Skinny laMinx is regularly featured in local magazine and online editorials, and her recognisable pattern design has no doubt inspired another generation of textile entrepreneurs in South Africa.
Also have a look at local textile accessories design team Zana.
7. Kirsten Goss And Missibaba
Look out for the range of quirky designs and styles at their Joburg store in Birdhaven.
With a range of similar products on the market, Pichulikkickstarted a revival of statement neckpieces, with a range of other jewellery on offer too.
Also look at: Henriette Botha
OTHER LOCAL PRODUCTS
9. Rain (Swellendam)
With locally sourced ingredients from Africa, and a focus on upliftment and skills development, Rain is a range of body and lifestyle products with a conscience. With a head office in the small town of Swellendam in the Western Cape, Rain now also has spas all over the country, and an office in the USA.
Try their signature foot treatment at one of their spas when you have the opportunity!
10. Jane Sews (Durban)
With a focus on sustainable design, Jane Sews make limited edition clothing and accessories, all of them with a story and a clear emphasis on conscience.