IMAGE OF THE DAY
“They say that a picture says a thousand words, and we couldn't agree more. In the world of Lionesses of Africa, we celebrate women's entrepreneurship in all its forms on the continent, and we love the powerful images that conjure up the spirit of women-owned businesses and the products and services they create. These images give us an insight into the unique creativity that exists here in Africa and that is capturing the imagination of the world. Each Monday to Friday, Lionesses of Africa features a striking 'Image of the Day' that celebrates the work, or a moment in the life of, a talented African woman entrepreneur. Enjoy!”
— Melanie Hawken, LoA founder and editor-in-chief
Abigail K. Photography
Image of the Day: ‘Woman Behind the Lens’ … Abigail Klopper, the founder of Abigail K. Photography in South Africa, is a women’s portrait photographer and confidence crusader, with a passion for helping women build confidence at all stages of their lives. She helps women cultivate their confidence through her Specialist Women’s Portrait Photography, her online Conscious Confidence course, professional speaking, workshops and online platforms. Read More →
Image of the Day: ‘Stylish Natural Hair’ … as featured in Hairpolitan Lifestyle, an online magazine, created by Kenyan entrepreneur, Wambui JL, sharing stories about people who are celebrating and living natural lifestyles. The magazine informs women on growing their natural hair, using natural products for their hair and skin, eating organic foods, and managing their overall wellbeing. Read More →
Image of the Day: ‘Suede Leather Rucksack’ … by Dokmai, a Rwandan company founded in 2014 by Bernadette Umunyana, producing fashion accessories for women and men including handbags, laptop bags, satchels, belts, evening clutches, purses and cosmetic bags. All their products are handmade with passion in Rwanda by skilled leather craftspeople and the company is committed to Fair Trade principles and the training of young people. Read More →
‘Bread, glorious bread!’ … Babette Kourelos, founder of Johannesburg-based artisan bread-baking company Babette’s Bread, has turned her passion for the art of bread-baking into a thriving business. At Babette’s Bread, they bake 100% natural artisan bread using only the best local and natural unbleached stone ground flour, salt, water and yeast. Using traditional artisan bread baking techniques results in bread with great character and flavour, which is also easy to digest.
‘Vibrant Tassel Earrings’ … from Inzuki, a dynamic young Rwandan brand specializing in jewellery, accessories and interior decor products, hand-made using local materials by local artisans. Founder, Teta Isibo, is renowned for her bold African fusion jewellery with a contemporary edge that is African inspired and globally loved. Inzuki is now aiming for international markets and will soon be available in the rest of Africa, Europe, Asia and North America.
‘Torero Backpacks’ … the latest handmade backpacks from Reform Studio made out of recycled plastic. The concept behind this eco-business based in Egypt all started when its founders, Mariam Hazem and Hend Riad, challenged themselves to find an innovative design solution to help solve one of Egypts most serious environmental problems: waste plastic. One experiment after another led the duo came up with the company’s first product ‘Plastex’ - a new eco-friendly material made by weaving discarded plastic bags.
Oryx Desert Salt
‘Celebrating African Salt’ … Samantha Skyring, founder of Oryx Desert Salt, is a South African entrepreneur bringing the unique desert salt of the Kalahari to the world’s kitchens. Her rapidly growing company supplies a natural, crystal-white salt from the Kalahari – unrefined, sun-dried, and free from any additives and preservatives. It is harvested in a sustainable manner from a remote and pristine area of the vast Kalahari Desert in South Africa.
‘Chocolate Tempations’ … Sugar free chilli and dark chocolate finished with a dash of African inspired bling from The Chocolatiers, a South African mother and daughter team creating artisanal, handcrafted chocolates with a conscience. This team are passionate champions of slow food, and their approach is steeped in tradition, taking their time to hand make every chocolate with love and to perfection.
‘World Read Aloud Day’ … was celebrated on February 1st and Fatuma Abdullah the founder of Akiki Dolls in South Africa made sure to encourage every one to read aloud to their children. Fatuma is the author and publisher of the wonderful children's book ‘Akiki’ - a you African girl who enjoys all manner of adventures in an urban African setting. Fatuma’s books along with her range of Akiki Dolls bring a refreshing African narrative to children, teaching them to celebrate and embrace their African heritage.
Image of the Day: ‘Luxury Knitwear’ … Candice Johnson is pictured showcasing her designer mohair knitwear range at The Copenhagen International Fashion Fair in Denmark. Miss Knitwear is a Cape Town based designer and producer of luxury knitwear, using natural yarns and materials which are locally and ethically sourced. Candice did a great job introducing her unique range that celebrates traditional South African skills and luxurious raw materials to the Scandinavian market. Read More →
‘When Lighting Becomes Art’… It’s often said that lighting makes a space or a room come alive, and for design entrepreneur Dounia Tamri-Loeper, founder of Dounia Home, lighting is her inspiration. She is creating beautiful, statement lighting pieces that not only celebrate the centuries-old techniques and designs that are uniquely Moroccan, but is elevating them to a whole new level. Read More.
Image of the Day: ‘African Print Baby Clothes’… from Kuna Kids who create a range of children's clothing that is bright and bold with a distinctive African twist. South African entrepreneur and designer, Shingai Nyagweta, founder of KuNa Kids, is building a loyal following around the world for her children’s clothing brand that embraces the uniquely local shweshwe fabrics, but incorporated into funky and practical designs. Read More →
‘Wrap Dress’… from KONA, a unique fashion and accessories company in Uganda that is inspired by a mix of Indian and African influences. Founders Bhavya Kalsi and Nimisha Kalipurayath playfully mix patterns, styles, colors, stitching techniques and materials to form Kona’s unique product line. With raw materials being sourced locally and products handmade by a team of women in Kampala, Kona’s purpose is to create employment and empowerment for local artisans. Read more.
Silver Box Jewellery
Image of the Day: ‘Colourful Gems’ … Rachel Phiri is the founder of Silver Box Jewellery in Zimbabwe, creating authentic, handcrafted jewellery for all who love beautiful accessories. Rachel has a great eye for combining colourful stones in her pieces, and is passionate about producing accessories that modern women can use as part of their day-to-day wardrobe. Read More →
‘Pendant Light’ … Is it concrete? No, it's 100% waste paper! Mixed with recycled glass and local jacaranda wood. These beautiful pendant lights are produced by Quazi Design, a cutting edge craft company in Swaziland, who are changing the perception of waste paper and handcraft. All their products are hand made by local women, empowering them through skill sharing and earning a sustainable permanent income.
Mash.T Design Studio
‘Lighting Spaces With Colour’ … Thabisa Mjo the founder of Mash.T Design Studio in South Africa has this past week been lighting up Maison & Objet, the international home decor, interior design, architecture and lifestyle show in Paris with her wonderfully colourful Tutu Light design. Mash.T Design Studio is an interior design firm, specializing in design for the retail and hospitality sectors and Thabisa is fast making a name for herself with her highly creative designs.
‘Cooking Up a Storm!’… They say food is love, and when prepared by passionate chefs who have a love and respect for the ingredients they use, combined with a creative eye and hand, that love is passed on to the customer. South African chef and entrepreneur, Ntediseng Mwale (Chef Teddy), founder of Excellere Foods, a company specialising in catering and confectionery.
‘Passion Filled Ice cream’… Fresh, fun and love filled ice cream made from YoCoco that is also Dairy-Free. YoCoco, founded by Sine Ndlela, is an exciting new artisan dairy-free ice cream brand that is tantalising tastebuds in South Africa with fabulous flavour combinations and taste sensations.
‘Fun Tote’…Zana's fun and durable tote bag is perfect for hitting the market, carrying your picnic, or just going to work with your laptop. Zana, a Cape Town based company designing and producing screen printed textile products, was launched in 2012 by mother and daughter duo Sue and Robyn Britz. Sue has many years’ experience in print and production and Robyn focuses on the graphic design, branding and online. Focused on bold fun patterns and novelty giftables, Zana sells it products online and wholesales to buyers and boutiques all over the world.
‘Inspiring Radio Host’… congratulations to Zambian entrepreneur and media personality, Rose Sibisi, on launching her new show on Radio Christian Voice in Lusaka which airs every Friday at 12:10pm. Rose is also the creator and host of StylewithRoseS, a popular television talk-show in Zambia that showcases self-made women entrepreneurs, women game changers, women trailblazers and women innovators.
Mathilde & Co.
‘Shweshwe Summer Hats’… from Mathilde & Co., a small cooperative of women based in the little Karoo of Barrydale, aiming to empower as many women as possible by teaching them skills and business-sense. Founder Gwendolyne Gosselin ensures that all items are individually handmade with passion and care in the best cottons and colourful African fabrics.
House of Tara
‘Make-up for Women of Colour’… from House of Tara International, a pioneering make-up company in Nigeria with a vision to become a globally respected beauty brand. Founder, Tara Fela-Durotoye, takes pride in empowering women, creating self-awareness, as well as boosting self-esteem. Read more.
‘Beautiful Baby Nursery’… by Nels Babies, an online specialist of unique, custom-made children’s bedding and curtains in Namibia. Founder Beatha Shitemba creates beautiful products for decorating gender-neutral nurseries, for those who don't want to be confined by typical, gender-orientated decor.
‘Eco-friendly Jewellery’… from Yakutti, an online platform that curates and sells uniquely elegant jewelry produced by ethical and eco-conscious jewelry designers and brands that are contributing in significant ways to their local communities in Kenya and Tanzania. The featured bangles are handmade using up-cycled brass and aluminium by talented artisans in Nairobi.
Ruff 'n' Tumble
‘Kids Fashion’… from Ruff 'n' Tumble, a leading designer, manufacturer and retailer of designer children's clothing in Nigeria. Founder Adenike Ogunlesi started out modestly in 1996 selling the clothes she made from the boot of her car and in bazaars. Today, Ruff 'n' Tumble is an instantly recognisable brand in Nigeria and has a reputation for being one of the top manufacturers of children's clothing throughout West Africa.
Image of the Day: 'Adinkra Chocolates'… ’57 Chocolate is the pioneer bean to bar chocolate business in Ghana defined by creativity and luxury, and created by sisters Kimberley and Priscilla Addison. This venture uses resources grown within the country to create delicious, whimsical chocolate treats. ’57 hones in on Ghana’s Independence Day spirit and challenges the status quo that premium chocolate can only be made in Europe. The featured Adinkra bars are beautiful bite-sized bars engraved with visual symbols originally created by the Ashanti of Ghana. Read More →
Image of the Day: ‘Celebrating African Print’… Pernia Couture is a creative fashion brand from Ghana that uses African prints and beadwork to create a unique range of ladies’ clothing and accessories. Founder Anna Cole Ojukwu is passionate about creating bold unique accessories and clothes to make women feel more confident. Read More →
YSWARA & Terres D'Afrique
‘The Ritual of Tea’… presented by YSWARA, a rapidly growing African luxury tea brand that produces a collection of luxury teas, infusions and tea time accessories that tell a uniquely African story. Founder Swaady Martin creates elegant, high-end products using the continent’s natural resources, all produced by African artisans. Swaady aims to capture a true spirit of African luxury by reviving Africa’s endangered cultural heritage and unique ancestral craftsmanship.
Image of the Day: ‘Air Mesh Honeycomb Coat’… available at Burgundy Fly, a fashion retail brand that is rapidly becoming South Africa’s fashion window to the world! Founder Nobesuthu Ndlovu is a great example of a woman entrepreneur who has all these skills and more, and together with her business partner and husband is building an exciting company that now has three retail stores, as well as a successful online store. Read More →
Image of the Day: ‘Master Weaver’… Kente Master is a fabric artisan startup committed to promoting African entrepreneurship by internationally servicing a unique blend of premium, finished Kente graduation stoles. Founder Rafiat Kasumu creates dynamic, long-lasting, and mutually beneficial relationships between local Kente weaving associations in Ghana and universities in the United States so that students graduate wearing authentic, customized graduation stoles #MadeInGhana. Read More →
Matter of Fakt
Image of the Day: ‘The Tony Earrings’… are a collaboration dreamt up by two like-minded designers, Matter of Fakt and Thalia Strates. Founded in November 2013 by designer Mary-Anne Grobler, Matter of Fakt was the result of what seemed to be Mary-Anne’s perpetual and disappointing search for the perfect show-stopping, larger-than-life, natural-stone statement ring. The Matter of Fakt brand is based on their appreciation of contemporary African adornments. Read More →
Image of the Day: ‘Zebra Print Maxi Dress’… from Adèle Dejak, a brand of handcrafted fashion jewellery and fashion accessories that is inspired by African tribes, textiles, culture and traditions. At the forefront of the African luxury movement is Adèle’s edgy collection of bags, bracelets, necklaces, earrings and rings which is a must-have fashion accessory and fashion statement piece. The brand is built on an ethical and sustainable business model, with the objective of empowering women through adornment. Read More →
Image of the Day: ‘RCT Shoulder Bag’… from soleRebels, an amazing artisan footwear company founded in 2004 by Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu in her community of Zenabwork in Ethiopia. soleRebels is the world's first Fair Trade footwear company and its products are sold in over 40 countries around the globe. Since launching, soleRebels has created 1,200 jobs and plans to have more than 3,000 full-time Ethiopian employees by the end of 2018 when its new production facility is complete. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Luxury Softness'… from Miss Knitwear, a Cape Town based designer and producer of luxury knitwear using all natural yarns and materials. Candice Johnson founded Miss Knitwear in 2013, creating her first luxurious collection of fine kid mohair shawls, scarves and throws. She has expanded her collection to include a men’s and décor collection using only the finest ethically sourced kid mohair. Read More →
The House of Agness
Image of the Day: ‘Acrylic Flower Box’... by the The House of Agness, a floral design company in Mozambique inspired by modern, minimalistic aesthetics but with a classic touch. Founder Mariana Agness Francisco Eria's products and services include deliveries of her signature boxes, bouquets and gift boxes and onsite floral services. Read More →
New Year Spirit
Image of the Day: ‘New Year Spirit'... Welcome to 2018. Let’s make it one to remember for all women entrepreneurs across the African continent. Get ready to roar Lionesses!
A A K S
Image of the Day: 'Baw Pot Handbags in the Making'... founder of AAKS, Akosua Afriyie-Kumi, holding her brand's trademark raffia woven bags in production for delivery to buyers around the world this festive season. Akosua launched AAKS with the goal of introducing the world to her favourite weaving techniques done by the women of Ghana whilst also creating and igniting sustainable jobs within Africa. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Sustainability Innovator'... Solar Sister eradicates energy poverty by empowering women with economic opportunity. Founders Katherine Lucey and Neha Misra combine the breakthrough potential of clean energy technology with a deliberately woman-centered direct sales network to bring light, hope and opportunity to even the most remote communities in rural Africa. Solar Sister creates sustainable businesses, powered by smart investment in women entrepreneurs. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Festive Spirit'... South African artisan chocolate brand, Chocoloza, are out and about in Johannesburg cheering festive shoppers with their wonderful display of chocolate gift boxes. Chocoloza combines the best Belgian chocolate with the finest local, fresh African ingredients creating a taste sensation unlike anything else you will taste in the chocolate world. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Jumpsuits'... is available at BOLD Kampala, an exciting African fashion retail business founded by three vibrant and talented women entrepreneurs from Uganda - Ngyenzi 'Nunu' Mugyenyi, Janet Mugume and Angel Kalisa. They have a vision for raising awareness of, and retailing, African fashion brands to the world. Their BOLD Kampala and Kigali retail concepts are truly world-class and provide affordable space and excellent exposure for uniquely African designer fashion brands. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Endless Summer'... Bantu Wax, founded by Yodit Eklund, is an African surf brand that breaks the clichés of blonde haired, blue-eyed surfer dudes with images from Africa's own surf culture. Since its birth, Bantu has been Made In Africa, by Africans, sustainably and fairly, merging the rich history of African art and textiles with Africa's deeply rooted surf culture. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Made in Rwanda'... pioneering Rwandan fashion designer Sonia Mugabo is setting the standard for Rwandan fashion in global and local markets. Sonia launched her eponymous fashion brand back in 2013, born out of a desire to tap into the existing local artisan talent to make high quality men's and womenswear. The brand has since gone on to great success and has big plans to expand into New York, London and other fashion capitals of the world. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'The Essence of the Cape'... fynbos-infused gin from Inverroche Distillery, a small batch, artisanal producer in the Western Cape, South Africa. Their spirits are distributed throughout South Africa and in 14 countries including Europe, America, Asia and Africa. Founder Lorna Scott uses the extraordinary bounty of rare, aromatic medicinal and culinary herbs, flowers and berries, which grow all around her as the inspiration to create a range of uniquely South African gins. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Gifts from Nature'... verbena scented Bath Truffles from RAIN nestled in a beautiful handcrafted gift box. Founder Bev Missing's wonderful brand, which now has stores across Africa, the USA and Ireland, creates handmade bath and body products using natural ingredients with African origins. All of Rain's products are responsibly handmade with love and care for their customers, craftspeople and the environment. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Panama Hats'... The latest collection of hand painted hats by Victoria Verbaan, a South African artist and illustrator, available at Charles Greig Collective in Johannesburg. Victoria works in a wide variety of artistic disciplines ranging from illustration and painting to the design of bespoke rugs, wallpaper, limited edition fine art prints, fabric and more recently, ceramics. Her commissioned artwork and fabric can be seen in local and international homes as well as restaurants and boutique hotels. Wallpaper Magazine recently named her as 1 of 20 reasons to visit South Africa. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Floral Bomb Basic Tote'... from Missibaba, a luxury accessory label established by leather devotee Chloe Townsend in 2005. Passionate about South Africa and supporting local industry Chloe works alongside business partner Lizel Strydom from a sun drenched studio in Woodstock, Cape Town, experimenting with texture and colour that continuously push the boundaries of imagination. A team of eight dynamic women work tirelessly alongside Chloe and Lizel, pouring their love and energy into each and every creation. Adored by celebrities, style icons and fashion editors alike, Missibaba accessories exude exotic exuberance and sophisticated charm. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Waste to Wealth'... Esther happily redeems her earned 8,000 RecyclePoints to get 2 cartons of Indomie Noodles. Esther is part of Recycle Points recycling programme in Lagos, Nigeria and her domestic waste which could have ended up in a dump site has now earned her food items. Chioma Ukonu the co-founder of Recycle Points is building a game-changing recycling business that is enabling individuals, particularly from low-income households, to create value from their everyday waste. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Crochet Pet Basket'... by Benji+Moon, a wonderful South African startup creating beautiful handcrafted products for your beloved cats and dogs. Co-founders Hanneke Schutte & Karen Carr work with local artisans and established designers to bring you beautifully designed pet products whilst proudly donating 5% of your purchase to CLAW (Community Led Animal Welfare). Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Aluro Fabric'... There is a growing global interest in African design, textiles and products, and talented Nigerian interior designer and lifestyle brand creator, Eva Sonaike, is taking the world by storm on the back of this trend. Her aim is to position the 'African' aesthetic in the global textiles and interior industry as part of her bigger brand-building picture. Read More →
FEAT. sock co.
Image of the Day: 'Cool Socks'... from FEAT. sock co., a Cape Town based company that creates playful feature socks with a sense of humour and wonder. Founder Alison Stewart and Chelsey Wilson pay as much attention to eye-catching aesthetics as they do to high quality and comfort. They are passionate about supporting local industry, so their socks are proudly made in Cape Town, South Africa. Read More →
Image of the Day: 'Who doesn’t like a little bling?'... and few do it better than KONA, the name of a unique accessories company in Uganda that is inspired by a mix of Indian and African influences. Founders Bhavya Kalsi and Nimisha Kalipurayath playfully mix patterns, styles, colors, stitching techniques and materials to form Kona’s unique product line. With raw materials being sourced locally and products handmade by a team of women in Kampala, Kona’s purpose is to create employment and empowerment for local artisans. Read More →