Skermunkil Designs

I recently visited a store in Melville called Superella. This was a great experience because the store had a totally unique vibe which was a mash-up of retro and modern, traditional and funky, organic and original. The one brand they stock which particularly caught my attention is Skermunkil.

As soon as I got home I did my research and this is what I found on the Skermunkil page. “Skermunkil Design Studio is a small jewellery design and manufacturing company based in Muizenberg, Cape Town. Our studio and shop is located in Muizenberg and is open to the public from 9 til 4 every week day. Everybody is welcome to come and see where we work, how we work and what we make. You are also most welcome to buy some lovely things… or just come for tea. Done deal.”

The notion of being open in this way really impressed me, as obviously these guys realise that their work is awesome and that people should get to see them in action. Next time I am down in the mother city I will be sure to visit the studio. I have never seen anything like this before, so I thought it important for me to share this beautiful brand. I sourced some pics from the Skermunkil blog, so check them out below and click through to visit the Skermunkil page.



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Squeaky Clean

CREATIVE SOAP DESIGNS BY DANIEL TING CHONG AND NATURE’S SKIN FOOD

Cape Town graphic designer and illustrator Daniel Ting Chong teamed up with Nature’s Skin Food to make some punny pastel soaps. Chong is always working on unique and interesting projects, so it comes as no surprise to hear that he has now moved into soap making.

Check out the three designs Chong made for his bars of soap.

To buy any of these soaps, or for more awesome, healthy products, click here to visit the Nature’s Skin Food site. To check out some more amazing design and illustration work by Daniel Ting Chong click here to visit his site.

RUBY Lingerie and Accessories

FAIR-TRADE AND JOB CREATION INITIATIVES BY SOUTH AFRICAN DESIGNERS.

Robyn Lidsky is a South African designer who is responsible for creating the well-known brand RUBY – a specialist, independent lingerie and jewellery label. Currently, RUBY’s signature includes fashion-forward lingerie and hand-crafted accessories.

 RUBY accessories and lingerie are designed and hand-made in Cape Town, where the expert hands of the RUBY Beading Circle are combined with the work of a talented in-house engraver and goldsmith. The RUBY Beading Circle is a fair-trade and job creation initiative that has been running for ten years and employs up to 35 women from the impoverished area of Khayelitsha, Cape Town.

RUBY lingerie ranges from comfy cottons for everyday use, to the most decadent pieces made with imported lace, velvet, silk and stretched satin. Besides lingerie and accessories, RUBY also brings us gorgeous sleep-ware, street-ware, men’s ware (MEN UNITED), shoes (STILETTO) and unique printed hosiery (in collaboration with Falke).

Above is a picture of RUBY at South African Fashion Week. For more information, product photographs and contacts click here to visit the RUBY website. To buy RUBY products you can visit YDE stores nation-wide. Follow YDE on Facebook (click here) for the latest updates on new stock and cutting-edge South African fashion.

SA Tweets for Sweets

SOUTH AFRICAN MARKETERS DIVE INTO SOCIAL MEDIA REWARDS CAMPAIGNS

Guerilla marketing has been on the up and up in South Africa in 2012, especially when it comes to reward-based social media strategies. We have seen this with campaigns like the Bos Ice TeaTweet for Tea’ product sample vending machine installation (by Cow Africa, Thingking and RAAK) at the Cape Town Design Indaba, or the Exclusive Books social media driven discount rewards campaign. ‘Tweet for Tea’ involves the tweeter receiving a product sample from the machine as soon as they tweet using the hash-tag for the product. Exclusives ‘Stickers’ are handed out as discount rewards for rating their products and sharing on Twitter and Facebook.

Most recently, Toyota has launched it’s new model, the Etios, with the pay-off line “Here to make you smile”. To stick true to this brand promise, advertising agency DraftFCB and Thingking created a tweet-triggered gum-ball machine pop-up installation which truly makes people smile. The tweeter tweets using the product hash-tag and a unique pin and the machine is sprung into action – and by action, I mean serious action. The gumball is released and taken through a series of wacky obstacles for about a minute before reaching the smiling tweeter. As a result, the consumer is completely captivated by the brand for a bit more than a fleeting moment – experiencing something totally novel and memorable.

These campaigns are brilliant, in my opinion. The integration of digital and mechanical, the guerilla tactics, the customer engagement, the sheer creative genius and the pure fun of it all makes these campaigns mouth-watering ideas in the eyes of a strategist – and definitely brings a smile to customers. The only question now is what will competitors and other brands do to trump these ideas? Will we be seeing cheap imitations or sparks of unique creativity?

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