Gold/Tulle OOTD

Hey guys!

So, I’m back with another collab featuring My Online Souk.

The lovely ladies over at MOS (find their website here) sent me another Diamanté-branded scarf to style – this time, it was black jersey scarf with gold detailing – which is obvi perfect for a wedding or an occasion that requires a lil’ bit of fancy.

Even though I’ve never styled/wore a jersey scarf as a turban before, I thought that this was the perfect opportunity to take on the challenge and make it work!
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Event: Launch of The Hayaa Box | Photoshoot

If you’ve been active on Instagram lately, you are bound to have come across The Hayaa Box – if not, let me fill you in!

The Hayaa Box is South Africa’s first subscription box for Muslim women. Each month, you can expect a beautifully wrapped box containing one of THB’s signature maxi scarves (in a gorgeous colour, of course!), at least one sample-sized (international or local) makeup, skincare or lifestyle product and to top it all of, matching hijab accessories to complement the scarf of the month.

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Pin Cushions, Phone Pouches and all things Clari

A while ago, I compiled a post on Clari Designs (read it here), as part of my Local is Lekker blog series. And a few weeks ago, I received a beautiful little package from the Clari Design team! Such sweethearts, I know!

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Before we even get to the actual items, I just want you guys to take a look at the manner in which it was gifted to me. I always love when packages are beautifully wrapped, it let’s me know that the gift-giver put a lot of thought, effort and time into it – which makes me feel really special! And the handwritten notes are always the cherry on top, it’s so much more personal.

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So included in my gorgeous package was a tee, a crocheted phone pouch and a stunning pin cushion – all handmade of course!
The pin cushion and pouch were both customized just for me in my favorite color ever – Purple 😄!! And yup, it is actually purple even though the name of my blog might make you think otherwise!

Let’s focus on this cute pin cushion, shall we? I actually enquired about the possibility of making pin cushions, from Clari. I think I was kind of desperate for one, mostly because I always end up losing my straight scarf pins, which was really frustrating! I’m just so lazy to put them back into the little trinket box that they came out from and poking them into a cushion would be so much easier – yeah, I’m that lazy. So anyway, I needed one that was cute, usable and that matched my room color – and it was like my prayers were answered when this cute little pin cushion made it’s way home!

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Even though this was originally a one-off product from Clari Designs, the super sweet Chantel agreed on taking orders for these pin cushions from you guys!!
I think it will make for such a great Eid gift for someone in your fam or even for yourself. You can fully customize it by choosing the shape, colour and size of the pin cushion too. If you want one like mine, with the little embellishment on it, that will cost you R55 or if you just want a plain one, it’s R30! It really is worth it, considering the fact that it will keep your pins safe for a long time to come!

Next, we move on to the gorgeous crocheted phone pouch (R45). What I love about the phone pouch, besides that it was handmade especially for me and that it’s simply exquisite, is the fact that it doesn’t have to be used as just a phone pouch. You could use it for whatever you like – be it storing makeup, cards & money or even hairbands & hairpins! It really is more than just a phone pouch 😉.

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The African Heart tee (R180) is one of Clari’s newest designs but unfortunately isn’t available to purchase just yet! The green stitch-ons (I’m not sure if that’s a word?) on the black fabric, really does make the t-shirt pop! I love T-Shirts because they are easy to wear and can easily be dressed up by throwing a blazer or a long-sleeved cardi over. I’ll be featuring the t-shirt in an upcoming OOTD post on an uber special day, so look out for that!

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If you like what you saw and read above, then perhaps check out Clari Design out on Mzansi Store, Hello Pretty and they will soon be making their way onto ShopaGift. And if you are one of the lucky ones that live in the Western Cape then be sure to pay their shop a visit, located in the small town of Piketberg. You can also find Clari Designs on Facebook and Twitter too, so remember to like and follow!
And if you are interested in get a custom-made pin cushion, then just message the Clari team on Facebook, or tweet them, and they will gladly help out!

Local is Lekker: Alexandra K Jewels

When I started the ‘Local is Lekker’ series on my blog, I never knew that there were so many local brands out there. Recently, I came across Alexandra K Jewels, an amazing brand that doesn’t exist solely for the purpose of making a profit, but is also geared towards pro-empowerment and the uplifting of women.20140522-092030.jpgKate Alexandra Fitz-Gibbon officially launched her local brand, Alexandra K jewels, at the beginning of this year. She creates beautiful, handmade pieces that are simply stunning and very easy to wear. Her current range includes earrings, headpieces and necklaces that incorporate a lot of feathers, crystals, pearls and pretty stones – very dreamy and boho chic, I love it!
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From all of her designs, the headpieces are definitely my favorite! They are extremely handy when you are attending a special occasion or if just want to add little something extra to your look. An added plus is that they work exceptionally well over your hijab, which is possibly the greatest thing ever.
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Kate donning the gorgeous Hot Natured Headpiece

Kate donning the gorgeous Hot Natured Headpiece

The Silver River Headpiece

The Silver River Headpiece

Kate was kind enough to gift me two of her ultimately gorgeous headpieces, the Silver River headpiece and the Hot Natured headpiece, which I absolutely cannot wait to feature in my upcoming look posts! Thanks Kate! The photographs I snapped up did not do the headpieces justice, therefore I decided that I will show you guys the headpieces when I’m actually wearing them. But what I want you guys to see is the manner in which the headpieces were gifted to me – so fab!

I know! It's too adorable for words :D

I know! It’s too adorable for words 😀

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Whenever I chat to local designers/entrepreneurs I always ask them if they’ve had any formal training or if they hold any qualifications in the industry in which they work – be it fashion, jewellery, or baking- and almost always, the answer is ‘No’. Kate is no different. She explained to me that she taught herself how to make all of the Alexandra K Jewels pieces that you see above. She wanted to prove to herself that she can create beautiful items without the help of others or teaching resources – a means of building her self-confidence and self-esteem. After succeeding at this, Kate decided that she wanted to instill the same confidence in others, so the next step was making her brand pro-empowerment.
Kate is currently training her first lady to make the jewels, she is also training her in what it means to have confidence, to know her identity and her talents. She is teaching her values and principles, and how to embrace her destiny, which is all in aid of helping her to be successful in the workplace and to lead a successful life.
By building her brand, Kate is building the confidence of another and hopefully many more women in the future, as the brand grows.may 159

If you are interested in supporting a great brand with an amazing purpose, you can email your order to info@alexandrakjewels.com or you can send a message to the Alexandra K Jewel’s Facebook page and Kate will happily send through a product catalogue!
From the end of May, you can make your purchase from http://www.alexandrakjewels.com, all orders can be shipped to anywhere in SA and soon an international delivery option will also be available. Items are priced from R220 to R650 and there is limited availability on each product to ensure that you can keep your individuality alive – take that all you annoying copycats out there!
And oh yes, if you want to have a quick lookie at more of the pieces available from Alexandra K Jewels, you can find them on Facebook and Instagram.

Happy Shopping!
Raeesa

Local is Lekker: Clari Design

About 2 months ago, I came across Clari Design on Twitter – and oh-so-naturally, I checked out the images posted on their Twitter profile and the link in their bio – and I was pleasantly surprised!

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Clari Design specializes in handmade jewellery, T-shirts and breathtakingly beautiful crocheted items. This wonderful brand was created by mother and daughter team, Dolla and Chantel, and was born from their shared passion for creating magnificent, handmade pieces. Dolla is the Crochet Queen of Clari Design and is responsible for all of the stunning crocheted bags, iPad and iPhone pouches from Clari Design. Chantel, on the other hand, is in control of all of the aspects relating to the jewellery and T-shirts made and sold by Clari Design. She is also the mastermind and crafter of the adorable, itsy-bitsy handpainted wooden disks that are embedded in silver rings, which you will find in their store.

Hello there, designers :)

Hello there, designers 🙂

Just some of the wonderful products available from Clari Design

Just some of the wonderful products available from Clari Design

Clari Design had been in the making since 2009, but officially kicked off in 2011 after Chantel’s return from the Netherlands (like, why didn’t you take me with? 😦 ). It was her trip to the land of the Dutch that allowed Chantel to experience and view the world of design and crafts from a different perspective – this is what finally got the ball rolling for Clari DesignClari Design has been doing so well that they  have reached as far as Australia, the Netherlands and even America. Wooohooo, go Clari!

As all of the items promoted and sold by Clari Design are locally made here in South Africa, most of the inspiration for the designs, come from South Africa itself. When I asked Chantel to elaborate, this is what she had to say “We love people and what they are made of, what they love, how and why they love it. It inspires us to make people happy. Beautiful surroundings make people happy, and the most beautiful surrounding is nature – so we bring nature into your home, onto your t-shirts and even on your jewellery. If it’s not with a realistic painting or a silhouette, it will be with colours and textures.”

Do you want to know what I love most about the masterminds behind Clari Design? It’s that they are absolutely accommodating. If you’ve seen something online, perhaps a crocheted handbag or a little pin cushion, and you simply have to have it, these amazing women will make it for you. Yup, seriously! All you have to do is contact Clari Design (which is simple, because Chantel is the sweetest pea around!) and provide them with your specifications and they will custom make it for you. Easy as that!
If you like what you saw and read above, then perhaps check out Clari Design out on Mzansi Store, Hello Pretty and they will soon be making their way onto ShopaGift. And if you are one of the lucky ones that live in the Western Cape then be sure to pay their shop a visit, located in the small town of Piketberg. You can expect items to be priced from as little as R30 to a whopping R1000, so there really is something for everyone! You can also find Clari Designs on Facebook and Twitter too, so remember to like and follow!

 

Happy Shopping!

Raeesa

Local is Lekker: Rings & Things

The love of jewellery is common amongst all girls, mostly because we know that an outfit just simply isn’t complete without that totally amazing statement necklace or that super cute cocktail ring – and this is where Rings & Things fits into the equation!20140312-170446.jpg

Rings & Things is this super cool online store that I discovered whilst on my random Twitter searches for South African online shops. So these guys retail fashion and fine jewellery and have something for everyone! From vintage and quirky to edgy and bulky, they really do cover their bases!

I’m more of a vintage and quirky jewellery lover and I think that’s why I’m really fond of this site. Some of my favourite pieces from their online store are:

 

The moustache watch!

The moustache watch!

The infinity bracelet

The infinity bracelet

The arrow bangle

The arrow bangle

 

Considering my appreciation and love for their products, I took the time to learn a little bit more about Rings & Things, about the designers and just basically how Rings & Things was born. So here are some interesting facts:

  • The mastermind behind Rings & Things is Erika Fourie, the designer and manufacturer. Yup, she’s a woman, so like a total YAY for girl power!
  • Erika has a certificate in Art, as well as a B-Tech degree in Jewellery Design and Manufacture from the Department of Fine and Applied Arts at the Tshwane University of Technology. Yup, she’s amazing.
  • After spending a few months in the Big Apple, she returned to SA and worked part time as a fine jewellery lecturer at a private jewellery school, and then as a trend forecaster and fashion accessory buyer for a company who supply a chain of local fashion stores.
  • Due to her creativity, experience and love for fashion, she decided it was time to build her own brand and that’s how Rings & Things was born!
  • Her designs are inspired by everything and anything including blogs, magazines, her friends, architecture, movies or even from some stranger walking down the street.

 

That’s basically all there is to know about Rings & Things, so go ahead and check them out on their website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and on Pinterest.

If you like what to see, ordering is as easy as 1, 2, 3! Select your items, checkout and pay! And no stress, they guarantee secure payment methods, so your money is safe! And if you are in Europe, Australia or America Rings & Things offers International shipping too! How frikkin’ awesome is that?

 

Happy Shopping!

 

Raeesa

New blog series: Local is Lekker

So, I’ve been contemplating for a while, on whether to do this series or not, and I’ve finally decided to stop thinking about and just do it!
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The purpose of this blog series is not to brainwash you into thinking a certain way, it’s just an avenue for me to create awareness of the amazing Proudly South African brands and locally manufactured products that are available for you to purchase, if you want to purchase it!

We are all guilty of purchasing imported goods, particularly those that are Made in China, or Taiwan or India, that’s why I thought that this series will be a good idea! For each post in the series, I will be focusing on a different South African brand that I have come across, discussing what products they offer, where you can purchase their products from and any other information that will be relevant to you.

I think it’s great to support our Proudly South African brands – after all, local is lekker! And no, this doesn’t mean you should solely support South African brands, I know that’s difficult to do, not even I can’t do that! But perhaps, slowly get into it and hopefully we will make it a habit! So don’t forget to look out for my Local is Lekker posts, to get all the info you need on your amazing, local products😊.

Please note that I am not getting paid by any of the brands that will be featured in this series, this is just a self-initiated blog series to create awareness for my readers.

Raeesa

Local is Lekker: Sowsan Scarves, An evolution of style

Thanks to The Al-Ansaar Souk last year, I was exposed to a few amazing Hijab brands. And no, I’m not talking about the Kashkas and Hanayens but proudly South African, locally produced Hijabs, one of which being Sowsan Scarves. 20140311-090605.jpg

Truth be told, the only reason I visited their stall was to get a closer look at the amazing embroidery on their table cloth – I know, that’s like so random, but it was so cool seriously. I just had to! It was like calling out to me, like ‘Come Raeesa, come have a look at this fine and beautiful embroidery’, so I listened and walked over there.
Now, to make sure that I didn’t make my true intentions too obvi, I started having a looky at their Hijabs and getting a feel for them and I think that’s when the bug bit.

Their scarves are super soft and are of that kind that don’t need the normal, under chin pins, you know? They just stay in place with the help of one/two straight pins, which is great for me, since I’m always losing/breaking my pins. Overall, it was just chilled and easy to wear Hijabs, which everybody loves.

I was totally intrigued by the Sowsan brand and so as soon as I discovered their Twitter account, I immediately asked for info to include in this feature, which the lovely and ever so beautiful Sumaiya was kind enough to share!

So here are some interesting facts about Sowsan:

Sowsan Scarves was launched about a year ago, in March of 2013, after much persuasion by the family of the Sowsan Masterminds 👇.

Sowsan Scarves is the brainchild of the smart and creative Shereen (green & black hijab), qualified fashion designer and genuine sweetheart Sumaiya (purple tribal aztec hijab), the soon-to-be fashion designer Saudah (sherbet aqua hijab) and the youngest of them all, Siddiqa. And the face of Sowsan is Mishka, featured in the sherbet peach/coral hijab.

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•The 2 S’s facing each other in the Sowsan logo, represents all of the Sowsan masterminds and embodies the brand Sowsan.

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•The word Sowsan is of Arabic origin, meaning ‘Lily of the Valley’,

•The Sowsan Scarves/Hijabs are made of 100% stretch cotton fabric – this is awesome, because it will keep you cool in Summer and warm in Winter, double yay for transitional items!

•The designs for Sowsan Scarves are inspired by nature, Africa’s wildlife, the multitude of ethnic groups and tribes and of course, current and global fashion trends.

Sowsan Scarves are intended for all age groups, funky and colorful designs for the younger generation and simple but stunning designs for the more mature ladies.

So now that you know probably everything that there is to know about Sowsan Scarves, you can go ahead and check out their Hijabs here:
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

If you like what you see, you can email sowsanscarves@gmail.com, they offer fast and reliable door to door courier service country wide (unfortunately, no online store yet!) or you can check them out at the local fairs in Durban. Oh yes, Scarves range from R150 to R180, excluding postage fees, just in case you needed to know that!

Here’s to supporting locally manufactured brands ☺️☺️, I hope you enjoyed this post!

Raeesa