South African Design

Pretty Personal with Gina Prins

Gorgeous Gina’s artistic streak has spanned childhood paintings to Fine Arts. She eventually settled on making masterpieces from precious metals, drawing inspiration from nature for the Secrets Unearthed range. We decided to find out some of her secrets.

  1. Hello Gina! Tell us a little about yourself.

    I grew up in Zimbabwe and had a fantastic childhood - horse-riding, fishing, and camping by the Zambezi river with my family. My earliest creative memories were painting elephants in Zimbabwe and fishing boats in Mozambique. My parents always framed my paintings, and I was encouraged to express myself creatively from an early age. I moved to Cape Town when I was 18 and started a degree in Fine Art at UCT; and on the side I started an evening course in jewellery design. I loved it, enrolled to do the full diploma, and never looked back.

  2. Bitten by the jewellery bug! How did Secrets Unearthed end up happening?

    After a few years working in various jewellery shops I thought ”Feel the fear and do it anyway,” and decided to start my own range. So, one holiday in Mozambique, after a few Rum and Raspberrys (Ed. note: We asked for the recipe, obviously. It’s Tipo Tinto rum and raspberry Sparletta. You’re welcome.), my family and I started brainstorming and came up with the name Secrets Unearthed…All minerals and gemstones are from the earth, and hold potential to become a beautiful piece of jewellery - they just need to be unearthed and created.

  3. That’s very true. So, what inspires you? (Other than those R&Rs!)

    I love so many things: My amazing family and  gorgeous husband, creating beautiful jewellery, running in nature with my two huskies, wine tasting with my friends, dark chocolate, horse riding, pottery, mushing (husky sledding) on the beach…I could go on! Just absolutely loving life! 

  4. Wait, you can mush on sand?! Guess I know what I’m doing this weekend. Tell us about the pieces we can find in the Secrets Unearthed range?

    Secrets Unearthed is influenced by animals and nature. I love making birds, and custom-making peoples’ pets. I have even done an alpaca range for an alpaca stud farm!  I am crazy about turquoise, and have always worn lots of turquoise as it is meant to protect horse riders. I also love working with old bits of porcelain and adding organic elements like flowers, birds, and animals. I am busy working on a new range for summer - I have amazing new gemstones and porcelain goodies coming soon!

  5. We can’t wait! So, do you have any secrets of your own?

    I am a huge believer in the Laws of Attraction and really bring it into my business. I am a complete vision board and dream journal junkie. I am also a believer in crystal healing, and I know that laughing, running, and yoga will always be the best medicine. 

From downward dogs to R&Rs - you can see the result of Gina’s inspirations in the Secrets Unearthed Hello Pretty store, and get in touch on Facebook and Twitter.

P.S. Can you keep a secret? Well, so can we - you’ll have to come back on Monday to find out what it is!

Win with Hello Pretty and OffbeatMelody!

Pretties, when OffbeatMelody decides to give things away, she doesn’t mess around. That’s why she’s letting you choose any item in her Hello Pretty store. Yes, really.

We’re not kidding around. Any piece in her store. Here’s how:

To Enter:

  1. Like OffbeatMelody on Facebook
  2. Visit OffbeatMelody’s Hello Pretty store to find your favourite item, and leave a comment on this post telling us which one it is.
  3. Get extra votes by sharing this post and tagging us on Facebook and Twitter.

OffbeatMelody makes truly special pieces designed to make you smile. Check out our interview with Melody here.

Winner announced on Friday 25th October.

Pretty Personal with Melody Watson

A real Southern gal who swapped the American South for the African, Melody’s designs make you smile the second you see them. An autodidact (sjoe, look at us breaking out the fancy words) when it comes to jewellery, her pieces are simple with an ever-present twist of fun.

  1. Hello Melody! Tell us a little bit about yourself.

    I was born and raised in the US - southern Georgia to be exact. I speak with a southern drawl, but have learned to tone it down since moving to South Africa. ;)

    I have always needed a creative outlet. School bored me, but art class thrilled me! So leaving school I couldn’t think of anything else that would make me happier than being an artist. This led me to study art in college where I found a love for photography and graduated in 2005 with a Bachelors in Art.

    But, apart from art, there has always been a part of me that craved a bit of adventure. Growing up a shy girl in a small town, life can become a bit mundane. Even though being the least likely, I became the first in my family to get a passport and after college I went travelling for a few years and worked my way around Europe with my South African boyfriend.

    Fast forward a few years later, I’m now married and settled (for now!) in Cape Town, which is one of the most beautiful places in the world.

     
  2. We think so too! And hey, you can’t get much more southern than SA. How did you get into jewellery design?

    When I moved to South Africa I had no idea where to start looking for work. But, I knew I would die if I had to work a 9-5 office job. For the first year I was here, I settled in and did a little freelance creative work here and there. It took a trip home to the states with a sore foot (which left me on the couch for over a month!) to help get the creative juices flowing. With nothing to do all day but surf the web and shop online, I stumbled across beautiful handmade jewellery that people sold online. Right then and there I thought “I could do that!”

    1 year later after a lot of blood, sweat, tears and youtube tutorials behind me, I launched my first designs for sale online and OffbeatMelody was born! I made a sale within the first few hours and I have not looked back since.

     
  3. So you’re actually 100% self-taught? Amazing! What inspires to you when you’re creating things?

    People that have the guts to take risks and go after their dreams, even if they seem so far out of reach.

    I also love travel, travel, and more travel and good, nutritious food. My husband and I love to cook and try new restaurants every chance we get. And then I have this quirk where I like anything that is “small”. My bucket list includes seeing the little five rather than the big five. ;)

  4. Oh man, I’m exactly the same. A thing’s cuteness is inversely proportionate to its size. That’s just science. Is that why a lot of your designs are miniatures of everyday things?

    OffbeatMelody jewellery is based on the whimsical and the down right out of the ordinary. I make all of my pieces in hope of evoking some sort of feeling or emotion from the viewer/wearer. Whether it be a sense of happiness, nostalgia, or even laughter.

    I try to go that one step further with my designs to make my pieces unique and come to life!

     
  5. You’ve certainly succeeded - I chuckle a little to myself every time I see your T-Rex earrings. Last question - what’s your favourite melody? (Other than yourself!)

    If you meant music, and you are asking for my “favourite” melody? Well, I do not do favourites (it drives my husband insane when I say that!)

    But, in life I march to the beat of my own drum. I hate following crowds, trends or fashions. I decide for myself whether something works for me or not. Thats why you won’t see run-of-the-mill designs in my shop!

     

We couldn’t agree more! You can see more of Melody’s work in her Hello Pretty store, and get in touch on Facebook and Twitter. Also, we’ve got a little something from her that’ll have you whistling a happy tune on Monday, so be sure to check back here!

Win with Hello Pretty and Jam Jewellery!

Jam Jewellery is giving away these two beautiful things. Can you be-leaf it? (Sorry, we couldn’t resist.)

Inspired by nature, these delicate leaves are handmade from brass. You could win either a pair of earrings, or a necklace. Here’s how:

To Enter:

  1. Like Jam Jewellery on Facebook
  2. Leave a comment on this post telling us whether you’d like to win the earrings or the necklace.
  3. Get extra votes by sharing this post and tagging us on Facebook and Twitter.

Jam Jewellery makes pretty things inspired by everything around her. Check out our interview with Jackie here here.

Winner announced on Friday 18th October.

Pretty Personal with Jackie Hahn

In a move that most business students can only dream of pulling off, Jackie Hahn dropped her BComm studies four months in and decided to answer the call of the design industry. Finding inspiration in both the everyday and the obscure, her Jam Jewellery range is a treasure trove of pieces that’ll make you wish you had more hands and ears!

Products shown:
Brass leaf dangling earrings
Silver crown cut-out earrings
Delicate folded sterling silver bracelet
Wood ring with heart cut-out
Silver crown cut out pendant
 

  1. Hello Jackie! Tell us a little about yourself.
    From an early age, I always loved doing creative things with my hands, and collected things like different shapes, sizes, and colours of leaves, or made collages of pictures or found objects that inspired me.
    When I left school I went to Stellenbosch University to study BComm (Management Sciences). However I soon realised that this wasn’t my passion and that I was meant to be in a designing and creating environment. So after just 4 months I quit my studies and took the leap of faith, and enrolled for a Bachelor of Arts in Visual Arts degree in Creative Jewellery and Metal Design at Stellenbosch University, graduating in December 2009. I have never looked back since. I am so lucky to have found my passion in jewellery design and manufacturing and that I can persue my creative talent as a career. After all, I was born to be a creative.
     
  2. And from there, how did Jam Jewellery happen?
    Soon after completing my studies I started working at a jewellery design company, but my feet soon became itchy and I wanted to stretch my wings over the waters. So in 2011 I went to Germany for an internship at a jewellery company and worked for a while at a goldsmith’s. However, I soon longed to start my own brand and so at the end of 2011 I returned to my home turf and started working on my lifelong dream of establishing my own brand.
    For the duration of 2012 I worked under my jewellery brand called “Hahn Jewellery”. I was invited together with 2 other international jewellery designers to showcase my jewellery in Berlin in October 2012. However, I decided that I needed a quirky, fun and creative brand that I can take to markets, online shops and festivals, a brand that people will remember, like, enjoy and can relate to.   
    So finally the birth of Jam Jewellery happened at the end of January 2013 and we are going full steam ahead and loving every moment! And we are here to stay…
     
  3. Your pieces have a lot of different styles - so, do you get inspiration from a lot of different sources?
    I love nature! Most of my inspiration comes from nature, I just love the organic feel of it, especially things like: shells, seed pods, underwater sea life, mushrooms, leaves, textured surfaces…but also found objects, like anything rusted or that has paint is peeling off, makes me super happy and excited ( I still want to do a range like this!). I also get a lot of my inspiration from industrial design such as lampshades, or interesting design in homeware, décor, and anything with an organic feel to it. Three of my favourite artists of all time are Gaudi, Mucha and Hundertwasser Haus. Their work is very organic and has a lot of interesting and intricate patterns and textures that puts my creative juices on a buzzzzz.
    Apart from jewellery, one of my all time favourite things that I like is to travel. I love just walking all by myself in ancient cities and exploring every church, interesting building, market and alleyway. My other favourite pastime is to walk or climb a mountain when I can, and to go scuba diving when I have the chance. However, when I can’t do those, I will settle for an Italian ice cream date with my boyfriend in Stellenbosch and pretend we are somewhere in Europe.
     
  4. And when you’re not climbing/diving/exploring/eating ice cream, you make pretty jewellery! Tell us about Jam Jewellery?
    Jam Jewellery specialises in designing and making of any kind of jewellery in various metals and materials such as: Wood, leather, and semiprecious stones. Our main focus is to custom design and manufacture engagement rings and private commissions, and also to design and produce our own unique jewellery range specially for the Jam Jewellery brand.
  5. Last question - what’s your favourite thing to put jam on?
    On a warm freshly baked scone with some cream!

Ooh, we could murder a scone with some jam right now. You can check out more from Jam Jewellery in her Hello Pretty store, and get in touch on Facebook and Twitter. Also, if you check back with us on Monday, we might just be giving away one of the stunning pieces featured in this post.

Pretty Personal with Elzanne Louw

A woman after Team HP’s heart, Elzanne Louw was drinking wine while we had this interview. She’s just wrapped up her Spring/Summer collection (look how pretty!) and took some time to spill the beans on how she came to create Lo, one of our favourite brands, which has been with us since the very beginning!

  1. Hel”Lo” Zani! Tell us a little about yourself.
    I’m a compulsive maker of things, always have been, and used to drive my mother nuts as a child with impulsive projects which often involved a big mess. But I get a lot of satisfaction from my work because fashion is ever evolving and all about self expression. I guess it was a match made in heaven.
  2. You must have had some of the best dressed Barbies in town! So, you knew you wanted to do this ever since you were a kid?
    I always knew that I wanted to build something really big, and in 2011 I realised that something big was my own small business. I have deep roots in the so-called creative industry and have always yearned for a career which would satisfy both my artistic needs and my suppressed inner geek. Lo was the inevitable result and I hope to grow this little fashion business into a viable contributor to the South African economy.
  3. That’s a philosophy we really love. And you? What sort of things do you “Lo”ve?
    I LOve my inner geek because she has taught me a lot myself and what I am capable of.
    I LOve when people use their brains to help other people.
    And I really really really LOve Hello Pretty :)
  4. Aw, shucks, you’re gonna make us blush! Speaking of Hello Pretty, tell us about the “Lo”vely things we can find in your store?
    I always say to people that I want to make that one item of clothing that has been in your cupboard for years. That go-to item, that just seems to be perfect for every occasion. You know, the one that you have worn to death…The one with the holes and stains which was demoted to home-wear two years ago but you still LOve it too much to let it go (and let’s face it you still wear it out every now and then). I hope to make clothes with longevity and clothes that women LOve to wear.
  5. Ah, going out in jammies - one of our guilty pleasures. What’s yours?
    Gettin my NAILZ DID with my friend Wendz! DUH :) The more glitter the better. Hehehe.

We also love gettin’ our nails did! (Even Scott, although he won’t admit it.) For her stunning S/S line and even more pretty things, check out Lo’s Hello Pretty store, and get in touch on Facebook and Twitter.

Win with Hello Pretty and Glove Jewellery!

Why wear your heart on your sleeve when you could have one of these amazing Glove Jewellery rings?

f Mzansi has a special place in your heart, then one of these beautiful Love Africa rings deserves a special place on your hand. Heritage Day is coming up next week, and you could win the ring of your choice - silver, brass, or copper:To Enter:

  1. Like Glove Jewellery on Facebook
  2. Leave a comment on this post telling us what you love about SA!
  3. Get extra votes by sharing this post and tagging us on Facebook and Twitter.

Glove Jewellery makes beautiful jewellery pieces with lots of gLovely local influences. She hearts everything about SA, and we heart her designs. Check out our interview with Janine here here.

Pretty Personal with Janine Esterhuizen

Like a hand to a perfectly made glove, so is the story of Janine and Glove Jewellery. Sometimes, when you find something that’s just right, you just know. Janine’s (g)love of SA combines with an eye for beautiful silverwork to create pieces you’ll want to wear forever.

  1. Hello Janine! So, what’s your deal?
    Hello Pretties!  I grew up in the beautiful Eastern Cape. I only moved to Cape Town in 2001, which I absolutely love!  This is home now.  I stay in a beautiful part of Cape Town not known to many called Mikpunt.  It’s a small holding area just outside Durbanville. Here I feel so closed to nature but still have the luxury of living close to town. 
     
    While I was in high school I always knew I wanted to do something creative.  But never ever knew what. Unfortunately we did not have art in school so I could not even explore the possibilities there.  Well, one afternoon 2 weeks before I write my last subject in Matric, my best friend and now bridesmaid asked me what I am going to do next year.  I had no idea…so, I asked her what she is going to do…her answer changed my life!  She continued by telling me she is going to study Jewellery Design and Manufacture at the college in our town.  I thought that was an amazing thing to go study and so the next day I drove to the same college and enrolled in the jewellery course.  So, I started studying jewellery design and manufacturing in 1999.  I finished the course there and decided it’s not enough.  I wanted to come to Cape Town and study further!  So, I carried on studying till 2005 and ended up with a degree in jewellery design and manufacturing.
     
  2. It must have been fate! And how did you go from there to Glove Jewellery?
    When I decided to do my degree I had to find a topic.  I always loved fashion and if I hadn’t gotten the idea to study jewellery I probably would’ve done fashion design.  Anyhow, I thought jewellery and apparel design should work together as a collective and compliment each other rather than try to outshine each another.  So I found a wonderful boutique that was situated in Kloof Street to do my study with.  Then, I had to find a name for my brand. After thinking long and hard I thought of Glove, an accessory to fashion - the perfect name for my brand! And so, Glove Jewellery was established in 2005.  

     

  3. That’s a really great back story. So, aside from fashion, what else do you “Glove”?
    SUMMER, SUMMER, SUMMER!  Is it here yet? (Ed. note: Sadly not. *goes to drown sorrows in a vat of hot chocolate.)
    I absolutely glove summer!  It makes me feel happy and inspired.  There’s so much more to do…like walk on the beach, or lie on it, and swim in the sea…well ok, I glove the sea too. 
     
    Personally I don’t think there is much that makes me feel as happy as doing what I love!  I love making new jewellery and hearing the response at my little market stall every weekend.  At the moment I eat, sleep and live gLove.  I have a great support system in my life (my fiancé), and don’t think I would be able to do it without him.

     

  4. Speaking of jewellery, tell us about the gLovely things you make?
    I lived in the UK for 2 years. I truly believe without that experience I would not be where I am to day.  Before I left I always made a range of wildflower pendants and earrings.  When I came back from the UK I realised how much I love living in South Africa, and wanted to show it in my work.  So, I started making the South African collection which has 5 wildflowers, 5 icons and 5 animals.  Out of that range also came the Africa ring.  So it’s evolved all on its own. 
     
    The wire heart rings I make also led to many more pieces.  The heart wire ring came from the idea of creating a South African Claddagh ring.  I just loved the idea of wearing a ring that means something.  And so came all the other little wire rings and shapes I started to make. At the moment I am obsessed with gifts brides can give their wedding party and family. So I have made new little pendants with special messages stamped on them, and then of course the little knot ring.  Such a sweet gift with a little note that says thanks for helping me tie the knot.

     

  5. Ah, what a great idea. By the way, ever since I started planning this interview, I’ve been singing along to songs by replacing the word “love” with “glove”. Do you ever do that?

    Bahahaha!  Not yet…but I think that is a great idea!  I do change the work love to glove a lot when I write and when I speak.  Here are some funny examples:

    • Spread the Glove
    • No, Glove No Love
    • Lots of Glove

    I love the wordplay. It’s also sweet to hear other variations. A lot of people call it G Heart and always ask what the G stands for. I glove creatives :)

 
And so do we! You can get all gLoved up with items from their Hello Pretty store, or stay in touch on Facebook and Twitter. And if you’re up bright and early on Monday, we might just have a gLovely little something to give away…

Win with Lovilee and Hello Pretty!

Pretties, I moustache you a very important question: How would you like to win a party pack for 10 people, plus a little extra surprise, from the lovely peeps at Lovilee?

Items by Lovilee & Match Set Love, styling by Yellow Papaya, photography by YSP. See the full shoot here!

We thought you would! They’re giving away either a Moustache Party Kit or a Ribbon Party Kit, each of which will show 10 people a good time. Plus, they’ll throw in a special little secret something as well, which will bring the prize total to R400.

To Enter:

  1. Like Lovilee on Facebook
  2. Leave a comment on this post telling us what you’d do with the prize if you won.
  3. Get an extra entry by sharing this post on Facebook - tag us and Lovilee!
  4. Get an extra entry by sharing this post on Twitter - tag @helloprettysa and @LovileeDsigns!
  5. Winner announced Friday 13th September

Lovilee makes wonderful and whimsical home, décor, and entertainment products. Check out our interview with her here.

Pretty Personal with Karen Kelly

Lovilee by name, Lovilee by nature. When a passion for entertaining combines with a love of pretty things, the result is Lovilee - a blog turned lifestyle and décor store stocked with all sorts of goodies that’ll make dinner parties delightful, weddings wonderful, and any party perfect.

  1. Hello Karen! So, tell us your “Lovilee” story?
    I’m a creative at heart who loves being surrounded by lovilee things. I’m a wife, a mom, and an online shopping addict that loves the colour purple. I believe that you should do what you love and love what you do! Pretty weddings and parties get my blood flowing, and lovilee décor and home accessories frequently wreck my budget.
     
  2. An online shopping addict? A woman after our own heart! So, how did Lovilee happen?
    Lovilee as a blog was born three years ago from a simple idea I had to share the projects I was doing in my new house at the time with friends. I became good friends with Melanie Wessels, who captured my wedding, and together we decided to formalise what I had into a wedding and home décor blog. My sister also came aboard and added a kids’ section, and so we became as we are today.

    Subesquently, they both pursued other ventures, making me the main Lovilee author. In June this year I also started Liefste in collaboration with Marinda May. Liefste is the Afrikaans version of Lovilee and aims to showcase proudly Afrikaans weddings, special occasions, shops, and businesses.

    The Lovilee online store started at the end of last year. After researching multiple options, I stumbled across Hello Pretty, applied to be a vendor, and here we are!
     

  3. And we’re really glad to have you! You’re clearly a very busy lady - where do you get inspiration for all of your projects?
    Hmmm, the two men in my life - my hubby and my little manny - keep me on my toes. I love them to bits.
    I love feeling appreciated, and knowing that I can touch others by bringing a little lovilee into their homes and hearts every day.
     
  4. Speaking of which, tell us a little more about the Lovilee things you make!
    The Lovilee store currently only stocks handmade or self-designed items. The products reflect little bits of me. I love creating little odds and ends that can make a room special or add a unique touch to an occasion.

    Also, in collaboration with Liezel from Match Set Love, I’ve designed some new party packs that are just FUN!
     

  5. We saw those! We’re going to rock those moustaches so hard. Bonus question: If you were a superhero, what would your power be?
    At the moment I’m going to have to go with the “Supergirl” cliché …Juggling marriage, raising manny, housework, Lovilee, and my other ventures is proving quite a task…But my woman superpowers keep me going. :)

Get your hands on some Lovilee items of your own from their Hello Pretty store; get your daily dose of eye candy on the blog; and stay in touch on Facebook and Twitter. Oh, and just between the two of us: If you check back here on Monday morning, we might just have a little something Lovilee to give away!

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