We are sisters who can. Our journey began in the Eastern Cape, in East London, but later the family moved to Cape Town and we grew up in Camps Bay. Our paths took different courses, but as young adults with small children we both ended up in Grahamstown, Eastern Cape, where we were together again for a while and one of us started a clothing factory making all sorts of bespoke clothing. We parted company once more and went to opposite ends of the earth until coming back together again in FROME (either can’t escape – or can’t keep a good team apart!)– which is where we and our husbands are based, our families all grown up and mostly independent!
As children, our Nan taught us to sew. (Yes, even in South Africa, she was Nanny), and we both happily produced most of our own clothes, an occupation that soon became a way of life – for one sister, a clothing business, and for the other, a creative escape valve from the stresses of teaching.
They say that once you are an Eastern Caper, you are ALWAYS an Eastern Caper!! The laid back life style, the weather, the visual icons, the friendly people, the work ethic and of course, the weekly braai – all make for an indelible brand that is as distinctive as it is unshakable!
Last year, while in the Eastern Cape on holiday, I saw the lovely local ladies in their traditional shweshwe dresses and longed to bring some of the EC back to England. With this in mind, while at my sewing machine making a pair of work trousers a few weeks later, the distinctive shweshwe fabric popped into my mind.
I mentioned this to my sister, and the ideas began to flow.
She LOVED the idea, and took it a big step further. My sister is not only close by, but close, and also the most positive person to have around and the story developed like this:
We’d have to source the fabric in South Africa.
If we were going to the trouble of getting shweshwe from South Africa for our own favourite designs, wouldn’t there be other folk like us that would love to have a little piece of “home” with them on a daily basis and especially during the lovely summer sunshiney months in England?
What about our own passion turned into something more?
We are both off to Cape Town in April, (happy dance!!) and shall return loaded with schschwe fabric of different colours and designs. (If you have a favourite, let us know, and we will do our best to source it!!), which leaves us with the merry month of May and many happy hours of chatting, sewing and creating, which is why you won’t see any of our creations just yet, but do keep an eye open for a few surprises on our Facebook Page.
One can’t, but TwoCan!!