Dan­gling past present, fu­ture


Lon­wabo Jo­bod­wana, 33, started mak­ing jew­ellery as a hobby be­fore it soon blos­somed into a busi­ness that cre­ates orig­i­nal pieces.

The graphic de­sign grad­u­ate, who hails from King Wil­liam’s Town, said she had started her busi­ness, Kuhle Apha, with­out any cap­i­tal.

“Dur­ing my first year of study­ing graphic de­sign in Cape Town, I was in­tro­duced by a friend to a bead shop in Long Street. Af­ter re­al­is­ing I could make my own ear­rings, there was an im­me­di­ate need to cre­ate orig­i­nal pieces that suited me and what I rep­re­sented.

“As one who had started with lit­tle to no cap­i­tal, I have been ac­cus­tomed to us­ing the most af­ford­able beads and ma­te­rial, even mak­ing my own beads with clay at times,” she said.

Jo­bod­wana, who is pop­u­larly known for her range of shweshwe ear­rings, said her ear­rings were in­spired by the past, present and the fu­ture.

“Ev­ery time I see some­one’s face, I get in­spired. I guess each ear­ring is an­other face I have seen, a friend I have made or a friend I will make in the fu­ture through my craft. Each de­sign of my jew­elry has its own story to tell,” she said.

“I sell largely on on­line so­cial plat­forms us­ing as much free ad­ver­tis­ing as I can.

“Be­cause of my graphic de­sign back­ground, I de­sign my own ad­verts and mar­ket­ing tools. I print and hand out my own flyers, cat­a­logues or posters. I cre­ate my own luck ev­ery day and I come up with new ways and places to sell.

“I en­cour­age any­one who is in the arts and is strug­gling to find em­ploy­ment, to join me. As a col­lec­tive we can cre­ate lots of em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties.”

Kuhle Apha can be found on Face­book and In­sta­gram or al­ter­na­tively con­tact Jo­bod­wana at kuh­leapha@icloud.com or 081-360-5992.

Pic­ture: SUP­PLIED

CRE­AT­ING HER OWN LUCK: Lon­wabo Jo­bod­wana wear­ing a set of her ear­rings

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