DI2016: Emerging Creatives – Part 1

It’s still all things Design Indaba 2016 here at The Design Tabloid.

And a quick little indemnity here: This is a longer than normal read, please bear with me.  South Africa is loaded with talented creative folk – that has always been the belief of The Design Tabloid.  Our philosophy from the outset has been to use this blog as a platform to reveal these creatives not only to the locals in SA, but further afield. Design Indaba affords us this opportunity and we take advantage of it, to share with our readers.

Design Indaba 2016: Emerging Creative #DI2016

I attended the launch of the 2016 Emerging Creatives at the V & A Watershed.  I must say, it takes a bit of doing to get my head around these Creatives being presented outside of the Expo environment. It seemed a little drab by comparison. Yet, despite that nothing could take away from the standard and quality of the creatives that were featured this year. The upside of this different venue was that I had time enough to absorb the exhibited works, which was previously something of a struggle in the crowded Expo Hall.

The Class of 2016 are serious contenders in the world of design. Since there are quite a number of Creatives it is always so very difficult to give all of them mention in our review. As they are to be found among the few selected Exhibitors, is credit indeed to them. That already sets them apart from the herd.  For this reason alone, I have decided to work in categories and present you with some of each category. Marica and I have always used this criterion “What and who made a lasting impression on us.” Those are the ones to be featured here. Naturally this is quite a subjective way of doing things, but then that is what blogging is all about.

However, before I launch into my “first impressions peeps” I just want to add that I stand in awe of these young, emerging creatives.  Being a creative business person, I know that it take resolve, faith in your product/service, money and risk to get out of the starting blocks.  Along come these young creatives, put their money and trust into their talents, take the risks and put their products out there for all to view. Long may their business spirit and ventures last and kudos to them.

Being so entrenched in the world of interiors, I am naturally drawn to any piece of Object‘d Art, furniture, fabric or image without much effort.  This year however, I have to confess that I was drawn to a fashion creative, cultural explorer, followed by an illustrator.

LACED by Dhiantha Achary:

First up (probably because I am such a sucker and fan of sneakers or as locally known – tekkies) a young lady by the name of Dhiantha Achary.  She has taken her artist skills and applied it onto casual footwear. Yes – I know that the branded sneakers are out there. Nevertheless, the kind of hand-crafted, customised footwear pattern she creates, gives the unique flavour. Her brand is called LACED.  Her business started out as a way to create unique gifts for select family and friends. However, as the popularity of her shoes grew so did her orders. She tells me that each shoe takes at least 9 hours to paint. Wow!  Dhiantha is developing new strategies on how to collaborate with other artists on the LACED project and expand the business to incorporate more than footwear. I say – You Go Girl! All the best going forward!

Find LACED on:  Instagram  |  Facebook  |  Twitter

+NESS by Max Melville & Jamil Randera:

Have you ever been completely drawn in by the subject matter of an exhibition stand you were viewing? Well that is how I felt when approaching the work of Max Melville & Jamil Randera. Their work falls into the Illustrations category (for me anyway). The name of their brand is +NESS. Quirky hey!

This splurb on the Design Indaba website says it best: “The project and its artworks present an array of architectural projects that help define the skylines, culture, and history of South African cities. Accurately drawn facades of different buildings are paired with unique colour schemes to express their particular character and context and ultimately uncover each building’s essence, charm, and ‘+NESS’. Displayed together, the collective body of work reveals the ‘+NESS’ of our cities.


Again – these images / artworks, so beautifully illustrating our local iconic buildings and culture, so did it for me. I could easily include their works of art into any relative interior project that we undertake.

Find +NESS on:  Instagram

Totamma by Galerekwe Maimane:

The third creative that attracted me was the work of Galerekwe Maimane, in the category Multi Media Design. She is an aspiring film director whose body of work is inspired by irrational fears and insecurities. Her exhibit held my attention the longest. I could not pull myself away from the film on view. This is probably because the diversity of cultural practises and heritages throughout South Africa appeals to me. The digital project is named “Totamma”.

Galerekwe had this to say about the project: “This is about exploring African identity and culture. An attempt at undressing nuanced and complex experiences not unpacking them. It currently consists of a YouTube series ‘then/now’, plus a companion book called ‘U+’ and can be accessed from www.totamma.co.za…”  If this is your kind of interest, then go take a peek for yourself.

Find Totamma on:  Youtube  |  Instagram  |  Twitter  |  Website

Okay – so this was Part 1 of a possible 3 instalments. What do you think of these creatives? Tune in again next week for Part 2.

Cheers for now all.


Design Indaba FilmFest 2016

I’m a little put off by myself. You see, my head was so in the clouds last week that I completely missed the start of the Design Indaba FilmFest last Thursday. Now I have snoozed through all the films I really wanted to see.

Like last year Design Indaba teamed up with The Labia Theatre, Cape Town’s oldest independent cinema, to present the annual Design Indaba FilmFest from the 11th to the 20th of February. Ten days, ten movies to inspire and entertain you.

There were three features, two doccies and one movie, I was dying to see. Two of those have already been screened (sad face). Fortunately, Design Indaba has saved the excellent options for last. Here are some of the films you can still attend before the event closes on the 20th…


Anomalisa, directed and produced by Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson, is a stop-motion animated film that tells the story of a downcast self-help author’s unexpected encounter with a telesales girl.

Dubbed “the most human film of the year” in 2015, Anomalisa presents a world where everyone is identical from the perspective of the protagonist, Michael Stone. Every character, including Stone’s wife and son, has the same face and the same voice until he meets a seemingly ordinary women who he perceives to be extraordinary, an anomaly. The story unfolds as Stone’s cynical perspective on his mundane life starts to change.

Anomalisa will be screened as part of the FilmFest on the 20th of February. Book your ticket: here.

Very Semi-Serious:

Described as “quick-witted treat” by the Hollywood Reporter, Very Semi-Serious takes a behind the scenes look at one of America’s most established publications, The New Yorker, which is known for iconic and often controversial cartoons.

Directed by Leah Wolchok, the documentary film looks at the cartoons that “make the strange familiar, or the familiar strange,” and the cartoonists who make it happen.

They succeeded in many aspects of the newspaper, which now includes fiction, journalism, and cartoons that poke fun at the sections of society who “take themselves too seriously”, says Wolchok.

Very Semi-Serious will be screened as part of the FilmFest on the 18th of February. Book your ticket: here.

The Infinite Happiness:

The Infinite Happiness is a feature-length documentary by filmmakers Ila Bêka and Louise Lamoine. The film follows them as they spend 21 days in and among the apartments and tenants of the “8 House”.

The two explore, investigate, interview and experience the lives of those living and working in this postmodern dwelling.

The “8 House” is a mixed-use housing development in Ørstad, Copenhagen desinged by the Bjarke Ingels Group. Shaped in the figure 8 it mixes residential and commercial and office space in what Ingels describes as “Architectural Alchemy”. Bjarke was a speaker at the 2012 Design Indaba Conference which I was lucky enough to attend. The “8 House” was one of the projects I spoke about – it was immensely inspirational.

The Infinite Happiness will be screened as part of the FilmFest on the 18th of February. Book your ticket: here.

If you want to take a peek at the FilmFest program or you want to book tickets, see the Design Indaba website: here.

7 Fantastic Freebie Valentines Day Printables

With Valentine’s Day being a scant three days away some of you might be scurrying for last minute V-Day gift ideas. Luckily you have powerful tool to your disposal – that would be a little thing called the World Wide Web. The internet is filled with all kinds of awesome, affordable, unique gift ideas. In addition, we here at the Tabloid have made your search all that much easier. We have done the legwork for you…

We found seven playful, quirky and bright printables that will make excellent Valentine’s Day gifts or greetings for your loved one. Did I mention they are absolutely mahhala, for free, verniet?

Freebie printables are an excellent solution if you are low on time and funds. As most printables are designed by talented creatives and trained designers or artist, they are also, in most cases, less cheesy than the average heart-shaped, glitter-dusted, corny Valentine’s Day DIY.

Just download the printable greeting of your choice and print it out. For something a bit more professional you can pop down to your local printers during your lunch hour and have it printed on good quality card stock. You can also go one step further by purchasing a sleek box-frame to put your V-Day print in – hello quirky love-inspired wall art!

Please follow the links below to download…

(above) Megan, of Wit & Wonder, designed these “font-lover” Valentines Day cards for bydawnnicole.com. I love the simplistic red and black colour combination and the bold hand lettering. The card with the typewriter design is my favourite – “you are just my type” – too punny!

Click here to download.

(above) Hello!Lucky teamed up with CreativeLive who designed these delightfully different, totally unique Valentine’s cards. I seriously dig the bear card – so quirky!

Click here to download.

(above) Another punny printable – this one playing into the whole antler trend. Designed by Landee at Landeelu. I “deerly” love this greeting card too!

Click here to download.

(above) Hannah from We Lived Happily Ever After designed this beautiful understated Valentine’s Day greeting card along with three other just as beautiful designs.

Click here to download.

(above) You know I’m a sucker for watercolour! Alexis from Persia Lou designed this gorgeous watercolour heart-shaped gem V-Day printable.

Click here to download.

(above) Love this happy floral “love is all you need” printable design by Mary of At Home on the Bay. This one is big enough to make for a stunning framed print!

Click here to download.

(above) And lastly for all you Star Wars nuts out there! Kristin of Yellow Bliss Road designed these awesome Star Wars inspired Valentine’s day greetings. It contains classic pun-tastic lines like: “Yo-da one for me” and “I chews you”.

Have fun nerds!

Click here to download.

ALSO, don’t forget about the super punny Valentines Day printable gift tags I designed last year. If you are thinking of giving your loved ones yummy edible gifts – you know cupcakes, muffins, sweeties, nuts, etc. – these tags will be super appropriate and tongue in cheek!

{FREE} Valentines Day Printable Gift Tags {The Design Tabloid} (6)

Click here to download.

7 Beautiful Freebie Printable Calendars for 2016

It seems the new year is the perfect time to score some awesome freebies! I decided to take a good sniff around the web to see what free printable stuff I could find! I was quite spoilt for choice and decided to limit my selection to the seven gorgeous 2016 printable calendars below. Let me know in the comments which calendar is your favourite!

Please follow the links below to download…

(above) Of course we HAVE to start the freebie love with a local lovely! Somerset West based graphic designer, Carmia of Clementine Creative, designed this gorgeous brush-lettered calendar. Each month’s lettering has been hand painted in beautiful watercolours. The result is understated and happy.

Click here to download.

(above) Here is another happy summer calendar. Audrey of This Little Street did all the pretty illustrations and artwork and Jessica of Coco and Mingo did the beautiful lettering and general layout of the calendar. Don’t you just love team efforts? I love the cute little strawberry design of the February month page… although the month of May is equally lovely!

Click here to download.

(above) Michelle, of Elegance & Enchantment, asked her readers to vote for their favourite printable calendar design available through Michelle’s Etsy shop. This quirky motivational desk calendar (pictured right) won and is now free to download from Michelle’s website! Be sure to check out the other designs too – she has some gorgeous inspirational and motivational quote and Bible verse calendars available on her shop.

Click here to download.

(above) Kristi, from I Should Be Mopping The Floor, designed this beautiful 2016 calendar-at-a-glance freebie with it’s whimsy mason jar illustration. This calendar is perfect for the pin board by your desk or for quick reference in the kitchen.

Click here to download.

(above) The team at FTD Fresh shared this beautiful floral printable calendar for 2016. They were even kind enough to design it in two formats – a larger calendar perfect for the wall next to your desk and a more compact desk calendar!

Click here to download.

(above) Graphic Designer, Galit, of Two Brushes Designs celebrated the new year by gifting her Facebook followers with a free printable version of one of her beautifully designed calendars available on her successful Etsy shop. I do have a soft spot for gorgeous inky watercolour designs!

Click here to download.

(above) Want something a little different for your desk? Try this three dimensional calendar designed by Ananda from A Piece of Rainbow. She also gives you instructions as to how you should cut and put this together.

Click here to download.

Emerging Creatives 2015: Our Picks

By Marica

I have to confess, I did not enjoy this year’s Design Indaba as much as I did previous years. Not because it was any less inspiring or amazing but because I was trying very hard to suppress a bad case of mutant sinusitis/flu. You know, the kind that laughs in the face of antibiotics.

A took a rather fevered (pun intended) rush through the Expo space and tried to absorb as much beauty as possible. It was also good to finally put friendly faces to some of the local creatives we’ve cheered for in the past – the talented ladies behind Touchee Feelee and Handmade By Me for instance.

As always I lingered around the Emerging Creatives section – they did not disappoint!

Here are some of my favs…

Ash Ceramics:

I adored the colourful ceramic pieces by Cape Town-based artist Catherine Ash. Her handmade range included delicate tortoise shells sculpted from porcelain and interesting ceramic wall installations. However, my favourite part of her vibrant range was the contemporary collection of plates, bowls, vases and mugs which featured striking trendy geometric patterns in bold colours.

Ash Ceramics:  website  |  facebook page

Maria Magdalena:

Ag, you know I can’t resist quirky illustrations – of course I fell head-over-heels for these detailed black ink beauties by Maria Magdalena van Wyk! En dan het sy so mooi Afrikaanse naam ook nog (I too come from a loooong line of Maria Magdalena’s and Maria Johanna Catharina’s – guess what “Marica” is short for…)

Each line drawing takes inspiration from Van Wyk’s life, such as poetry, strong female influences or her favourite songs. She sells these limited edition illustration prints through her eponymous company, Maria Magdalena.

Maria Magdalena:  website  |  facebook page

Kiara Gounder:

I know we rarely touch fashion here at The Tabloid – it’s not really our bag – we’re all about the décor. However, the stunning creations by fashion design graduate Kiara Gounder had me drooling! The structured clothing pieces were beautifully sleek, edgy yet elegant. The real showstopper however was a jaw-dropping 3D printed neckpiece that seems incredibly delicate and detailed.

Kiara has been exploring the potential of 3D printing in fashion. For this particular range she sought inspiration from microscopic images of fossils, plant cells and insect cells for inspiration for the detailed patterning.