Homegrown Creatives: meet Neil from The Streets Furniture Company

I know I’m a day late with this post but thought you’d all forgive me for taking a day off yesterday, it being Good Friday and all ;)

I’d like to introduce local woodworking champ, Neil from The Streets Furniture Company. I first came across Neil’s work via The Ruby Orchard (where he has some items on show/for sale) and love his contemporary style…


Who are you and what do you do / make / sell?

My name is Neil Du Plessis and I own ‘The Streets Furniture’, we do custom furniture and commissions, focusing particularly on using weathered/reclaimed timber and combining it with metal work to create an industrial modern look.

Did you always know that you were headed in this direction – how did you get where you are today?

I’ve always had a passion for creating, I studied and have been involved with music since my teens, so that’s where I started but my father is in the timber business so I’ve always had a knowledge of timber and some of the ins and outs of how the industry works. After studying, I was looking for a new creative outlet, people asked I said yes and I now I own a business.

What makes your work / products / services unique?

I guess it’s the fact that most woodworkers are looking for the perfect piece of timber to make the perfect piece of furniture out of. I on the other hand get most excited about the imperfections in wood, its the cracks, the knots, the checks and the spalting of weathered timber that makes me most excited. The combination of that aesthetic with the clean lines of steel are very complimentary.

Where do you look for inspiration?

Blogs, Facebook, coffee shops, my clients ideas.

Who are your creative idols?

Steve Jobs, George Nakashima, Thom Yorke

Where do you like to hang out – what are your favorite spots in your town/city/country?

I love the Natal Midlands but any good coffee shop or beautifully designed space will work.

Given the opportunity, where would you like to travel/explore?

Scandinavia with out a doubt.

How does a typical day for you play out?

I also teach music part time so if I’m not doing that, me and my colleague Sandile will be in the workshop creating, building, scheming and cleaning up sawdust.

With a day all to yourself (no meetings, distractions, to-do-lists) and an unlimited budget, what would you get up to?

It would start with a surf in perfect weather, follow by some fine dining and traveling around a beautiful European city ending off by watching a concert by my favorite bands.

If you could have any other profession, what would it be?

I have always wanted to do what I’m doing now :)

Where can we stalk you?

www.facebook.com/thestreetsfurniture or mail me theneildup@gmail.com

What does your workspace / studio look like?

My parents have a small holding in Ashburton, so I converted the garages into my workshop on their property – it’s a little cramped but will have to do for now.

What it the work/design/product/project you are most proud of to date?

I’d have to say my hairpin furniture, it’s clean and beautiful but extremely simple in design. I saw the idea on tumblr and thought it would definitely be something that people in South Africa would appreciate. Other that that, I just completed a 6,5 meter shelf installation made from pine tree slabs which still possessed the live edge of the trunk, I really enjoy that sort of work and would like to pursue more of it.

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{ all pics from The Street Facebook page / Instagram feed }


Competition: WIN! R2500 Fashion Voucher with Mr Price

After so many years of online shopping during my time in the UK (I practically bought EVERYTHING online), it delights me to see a functioning and easy to navigate site like Mr Price’s relatively new online shopping portal. Seriously, a lot of retailers in this country are getting it so wrong, it’s quite frightening…

I have yet to put in an order for myself, but maybe I’ll win the amazing competition they are hosting at the moment – R2500 shopping vouchers up for grabs – a girl can dream, right ;)

I’m waiting to lose a bit more of my baby weight (check out my progress here) before I hit the shops for a whole new wardrobe, but when I do, here’s what’s on my shopping list:


Loving the popular denim and floral print trend at the moment (cant go wrong with denim!) and it’s a perfect look for the up coming winter!

Click here if you would like the chance to WIN a R2500 Fashion Voucher with Mr Price

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 This is a Sponsored Post

Door Knob DIY Inspiration

Those who follow me on Pinterest will have seen a dramatic increase in the amount of home decor related pins that I have pinning lately – I’m talking EXCESSIVE! Something big is on the horizon for my little family and will share all in a blog post soon ;)

In the meantime, thought I’d share some door knob DIY inspiration – how stunning are these New Wechsler Fired Earth Door Knobs and Hooks?! Loving the glass ones especially and have so many ideas of how I can use them on some DIY projects in the future!

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Firstly, turn to your trusty friend Pinterest for inspiration…

463bc8b30a39b806d60963861d254416DIY Door Knob Coat Rack


picture-206DIY Door Knob Jewellery Organiser

diy-door-knob-beauty-jars-mis-kris-glitter-n-glue-organize-glueDIY Door Knob Beauty Jars

blogger-image-1020691118DIY Door Knob Curtain Tie Back-

Fired Earth Door Knobs and Hooks are available in an array of styles, finishes, textures and colours – prices starting from R114.99, exclusively available at selected Builders Warehouse stores.
Importer details: New Wechsler Kate Oakley – 011 445 3393

This is a Sponsored Post

How to make a bloggers day!

Nothing pleases a blogger more than feeling ‘heard’ through feedback from readers/followers.

On Thursday, my day was made by the simple gesture of an email (click on image to enlarge):thank you from reader

I’m not trying to blow my own horn by sharing these amazing, kind words, but just wanted to say thanks to this special reader for taking the time out to contact me, and to the rest of you who share your thoughts, encouragement and experiences by engaging with me on Twitter/Facebook and/or by commenting on my posts – it’s very much appreciated, probably more than you know :)

Happy weekend x


Homegrown Creatives: meet Alexia from Klomp Ceramics

“What do you love to do? Mr Klompje asked his wife Alexia. A simple question not always so simple to answer. “Ceramics” said the voice in her dream that night, and that part of herself was awoken” - an introduction borrowed from Klomp Ceramics website, the online home of ceramicist Alexia Klompje, today’s featured Homegrown Creative… enjoy x


Who are you and what do you do / make / sell?

I am a stylist, wife, survivor, woman, proud Cape Townian, and I make and sell handmade ceramics that tell my story.

Did you always know that you were headed in this direction – how did you get where you are today?

I think I subconsciously did. I’ve always loved ceramics and working with clay and looking back at my life I realise it was always the thing I really loved to do – it was always with me, a natural past of me. Klomp Ceramics happened at the right time – a time in which I needed to heal, change, grow, express myself.

What makes your work / products / services unique?

I think the fact that Klomp Ceramics is very personal, in work/product/service is what makes it unique. Each piece is one-of-a-kind and an expression of myself. As a collection, the pieces tell my story. I like to relate to each of my customers personally, whether it’s them popping into my home studio to purchase a unique handmade piece or receiving their purchase in a personally hand wrapped package, I see each exchange as a beautiful opportunity to inspire and connect with others.

Where do you look for inspiration?

I look everywhere! Through my life experiences I’ve learnt how to really open my eyes and see everything. On a day-to-day basis I’m inspired by my surroundings. Shadows, buildings, colours, textures…really anything goes! I’m also greatly inspired by what I’m going through and exploring internally at any given time.

Who are your creative idols?

I can’t say that I’m really the kind of person to have idols but I am inspired by a myriad of creatives out there. No one in particular. I can really appreciate everyone’s creativity, and believe that creativity is everywhere. Just living one’s life is a creative endeavour.

Where do you like to hang out – what are your favorite spots in your town/city/country?

I am lucky enough to live right in the centre of Cape Town CBD and like to hang out here the best! Even when I’m quiet at home, the buzz of the city is ever present. I love it. I spend a lot of time in The Company Gardens (which is really my backyard) and walking on Table Mountain with my husband Theo and Boston Terrier Bruce Lee.

Given the opportunity, where would you like to travel/explore?

I was a bit of a traveling gypsy in my twenties! I’d love to return to Brazil – one of my favourite places on Earth. I spent some time there about 10 years ago and miss it so much. I’m half Greek so always feel a slight soul pull to Europe – I’d love to explore more of Italy and Croatia next time I’m there.  And I definitely feel my future holds a little exploration into India and the East.

How does a typical day for you play out?

I wake up early, jump straight into my studio where I spend the day blissfully elbows deep in clay with Bruce Lee by my side, punctuated by a midday walk in the Company Gardens, until my husband returns home in the evening and we three go walking on the mountain. Obviously there is the occasional admin session but I try to get those over with as quickly as possible!

With a day all to yourself (no meetings, distractions, to-do-lists) and an unlimited budget, what would you get up to?

I’d be doing exactly what I’m doing now. Definitely with a shopping spree, pamper session and travel holiday thrown in there every now and again!

If you could have any other profession, what would it be?

Professional ballerina. Or fashion designer.

Where can we stalk you?

You can shop and visit Klomp Ceramics at klompceramics.com. From there you can stalk me via Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, catch up on Latest News, or contact me via email.

What does your workspace / studio look like?

It’s a happy, messy, wonderful space with one of the best views in Cape Town.

What it the work/design/product/project you are most proud of to date?

I’m very proud of Klomp Ceramics in it’s entirety – what it means to me, how it inspires myself and others, what each piece and every collection represents, it’s honesty.

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#DBNbloggermeet (or Durban Bloggers Meet Up for those who dont speak hashtag)

The bloggers event I went to this past Saturday has left me in a state of complete happy-shock:

a) so many AWESOME people
b) incredibly GENEROUS sponsors, and
c) FAB venue and complimentary lunch (thank you Hashtag!)

It was obviously great to meet so many of the bloggers I have been following/interacting with for a while now (as well as finding some awesome new people to stalk) and I’m still speechless about the goodie bags and treats we all received!

It wasn’t only a networking event but an opportunity for introduction to new things – we heard about the benefits of veganism from the amusing Fry’s Guy, we had a demonstration by Lenovo on their Yoga tablet (I’m in love!) and we had a talk by Mandy from Kitten Action, a small local cat charity (to whom each blogger donated R50 and some cat food, whoop whoop!)

I think there is only thing left to say and after that I will let my photos do the talking:

Thank-You(not only to our kind sponsors [see below] but to Veruschka, Michelle & Nicola who organised the entire thing!)


Daily Fix

Have all you ladies signed up for Daily Fix“the new online home of Fairlady, Home and Ideas magazines, who have pooled their resources to create a beautiful online meeting place for stylish women.”

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All our favourite SA mags, right? (Well, not quite ALL of them but certainly a great combination!)

It’s basically a Pinterest style collection of all things JOYOUS! You can select the categories you are interested in and sign up for email newsletters (your, ahem, daily fix) – think crafts, fashion, food, decor and more – or you can just visit the website regularly and visit the links you fancy. Beautiful photos and loads of great ideas, recipes, tips etc.

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Such a clever idea – and there’s even a shopping option (via Spree – something I’m trying not to explore too enthusiastically on account of a poorly bank balance!)

Happy browsing x

The end of my A New Weigh Fat to Fit Challenge & My Results (gulp!)

I started the A New Weigh Fat to Fit challenge in the beginning of the year and Friday was the last day… The winner has yet to be announced and Im so excited to hear which one of my fellow challengers has won. (I’m pretty sure it’s not me!)

If I’m honest – the beginning part of the challenge went swimmingly, I really started off well but as with a lot of things in life, I became unfocused and distracted towards the end and I really should have lost a lot more weight than I actually did. Bad excuses, I know.

One also has to live and enjoy life and I’m far from unhappy with my 73cm / 11.6kg loss though – woohoo!

ELEVEN POINT SIX KGS! In 12 WEEKS! Not too shabby at all. And I really am feeling great for it. I also plan to continue with the eating plan and to hopefully lose a bit more. Hubby is keen to eat more healthily too so I will have some support along the way (and even though the challenge itself is over, my support from Gaelyn at A New Weigh continues until I hit my goal which is pretty cool…)

So here is the photographic evidence (!) I must admit that I didn’t really want to post these photos because a) I’m embarrassed that I let my body get to the state it was in (I know, 2 kids in less than 2 years and all that BUT STILL) and b) I’m not at my target so I still look at the pics with more horror than pride/confidence BUT I’m hoping that in sharing, I will give myself the kick up the backside that I need to continue with it all, so here goes…


Excuse poor photo quality, obviously taken on my phone and all very awkward – cant exactly pose comfortably for this sort of thing… I’ve actually got ones where I’m just in my undies and you can see the change more dramatically in those, but will spare you the sight, and my own mortification, and you can just look at these clothed ones for now.

ALSO, something exciting happened earlier this week that is really going to help and motivate me in my goal to maintain a healthy lifestyle – I won a FitBit Flex from iwantthat.co.za and it arrived on Friday. It’s a water-resistant wireless wristband that helps you track activity, goals, sleep etc and it syncs with your smart phone which is pretty neat… Quite exciting really!


Well done to all my fellow Fat to Fit challengers and congrats – I dont think most of us reached our targets but we’ve all done damn well and have made new friends/connections and helped each other along the way which counts for a lot – heres to healthy living for the rest of 2014 and beyond x


Homegrown Creatives: meet illustrator, Adrie le Roux

Loving Adrie’s modern yet whimsical illustration and collage style – enjoy her interview x

Who are you and what do you do / make / sell?

My name is Adrie le Roux, I’m an illustrator based in Pretoria, South Africa. I create illustrations on a commission basis, and also produce work that’s for sale on Green Elephant and from my website and blog. I run a blog called She Draws Stuff, on which I feature current projects.

Did you always know that you were headed in this direction – how did you get where you are today?

I think illustration has always been something that I thought I would enjoy doing. I come from a fine arts background and have an intense love for children’s books and narrative; so, illustration is just a natural fit.

What makes your work / products / services unique?

I work in a variety of styles and I think my work is really able to adapt in order to tell a story. I like to think my work has a sense of humour too.

Where do you look for inspiration?

Everywhere. From long walks outside to art galleries and good conversation, the world is so full of places to find ideas.

Who are your creative idols?

Sophie Calle, Quentin Blake, Dan Eldon to name but a few.

Where do you like to hang out – what are your favorite spots in your town/city/country?

I love good coffee and good food, so, you’re likely to find me somewhere that provides both of those :)

Given the opportunity, where would you like to travel/explore?

Ah! Too many places! I have a whole list of places I’d like to travel to and see. Antarctica is one, I love reading books about early Antarctic expeditions. I’d love to see it for myself, try to imagine what the first explorers that landed there saw/felt/experienced.

I’m going to Paris in April, which has also been a long time dream! Baguette!

How does a typical day for you play out?

I love breakfast – the most important meal of the day

Then off to various work places, some days I illustrate, some days I lecture/teach, some days I take care of admin. I like to vary routine.

I work best at night, so, I’ll often put time aside to draw, illustrate and paint in the evenings rather than during the day.

With a day all to yourself (no meetings, distractions, to-do-lists) and an unlimited budget, what would you get up to?

I’d go somewhere new, armed with a pair of comfy shoes, some money for coffee, a notebook / a good book and take in the sights and sounds.

If you could have any other profession, what would it be?

I think I’d be a researcher … I love information.

Where can we stalk you?

Website: www.adrieleroux.co.za
Blog: www.shedrawsstuff.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/shedrawsstuff
Twitter: @adrie_leroux

What does your workspace / studio look like?

Organized chaos!

What it the work/design/product/project you are most proud of to date?

I did an illustration for a book on the outgoing FNB CEO Michael Jordaan. I really enjoyed it, and I think the illustration worked really well. I worked with collage, which is my first love, so, overall it was just a project I really enjoyed.

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Homegrown Creatives: meet multi-talented copywriter, blogger and photographer, Lauren

I’ve just realised that it has been a week since my last Homegrown Creatives post and I’ve written nothing in between! Where does the time go?! Here’s the lovely Durban-based Lauren from Glossary, sharing a little insight into her background, thoughts and inspirations – enjoy xcleverbirdbanter-weekly-feature-laurenWho are you and what do you do / make / sell?

Hello, I’m Lauren! I’m thirty-one and I work as a fashion writer. I also snap pictures and scribble my blog, Glossary.

Did you always know that you were headed in this direction – how did you get where you are today?

For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved busying myself with creative projects. I was obsessed with drawing as a kid, lived for art class in senior school, twanged guitar in bands during my college years and fell in love with photography in my late twenties. I almost studied Fine Art but I went on to do a three-year Media diploma when I left high school. After wrapping my studies, I was fortunate to land my dream job at an amazing ad agency. I was able to dip my toe into radio, telly and everything in between. My boss thought I could scribble well and encouraged me to become a copywriter, which is what I’ve mostly done ever since. I never actually studied copywriting during college but I was always a bit of an English nerd. Also, I used to devour my mom’s fashion magazines when I was younger which has come in handy for my current job!

What makes your work / products / services unique?

My mad skillz!

Where do you look for inspiration?

I am mildly addicted to Pinterest! I also read a zillion fashion websites and I follow loads of bloggers and photographers. I feel most inspired after a trip the country with lots of thrifting and tea thrown in!

Who are your creative idols?

For years, my biggest inspiration has been Sandra Beijer who is a Swedish blogger, copywriter and author.

Where do you like to hang out – what are your favorite spots in your town/city/country?

Um, animals farms! I love driving through the country and petting animals along the way. I’m also a mega fan of Wakaberry and smoky dive bars!

Given the opportunity, where would you like to travel/explore?

I would visit my besties who are scattered all over the world. Then, I’d go to Sweden to meet Sandra.

How does a typical day for you play out?

It usually kicks off with two poached eggs on rye! Then it’s meetings, brainstorms and pages of writing!

With a day all to yourself (no meetings, distractions, to-do-lists) and an unlimited budget, what would you get up to?

I would go thrifting at all my favourite haunts! I’d probably tuck into a Wakaberry along the way and then have pizza with my boyfriend in the evening. Haha, I think I would do that even if I had a gazillion rand. I love a good bargain!

If you could have any other profession, what would it be?

I would sell second hand trinkets and treasures in a big old barn. My dogs would follow the customers around and I’d serve them tea and cupcakes. Well, I’d serve the customers. Not the dogs!

Where can we stalk you?

I love a good stalking!

My blog: www.glossaryzine.blogspot.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/GlossaryLauren
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Glossaryzine
Instagram: http://instagram.com/glossarylauren
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/glossarylauren/

What it the work/design/product/project you are most proud of to date?

I’ve worked on some rad, national ad campaigns but I’m just glad that I’ve kept up with my blog for so long! I don’t get as much time to scribble there these days but I try to post at least once a week. I’ve also played some cool gigs which I’m pretty proud of.

Thanks so much for having me! x

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