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Q&A: Missibaba


Passionate about South Africa and a keen supporter of the local design industry, Chloe Townsend opened luxury accessory design label Missibaba in 2005. HL chatted to the leather aficionado about what excites her, what makes her different and what accessory lovers have to look forward as we head into spring… What do leather and accessory lovers have to look forward to as we head into the new season? Spring/summer will bring with it a riot of colour and wild creatures as we head deeper into the jungleWhat makes Missibaba different to what’s already available out there? Having an in-house production team means that we can be a lot more flexible with the design process and develop as we go. This allows our designs to always remain fresh, follow an organic path and reach their full potential. What excites you about being a designer living and working in South Africa? I love the mental freedom; it's somehow uncluttered here. There is a sense of immense potential and space to bring to life what wants to be expressed. Our natural surroundings on our doorstep are an incredible source of inspiration and offer us a chance to interact with and show our love for Mother Nature and to receive her incredible healing powers. What would you encourage first time buyers to invest in? And why? It is so personal; there is something for everyone. Trust your gut and go for something that makes your heart sing! A Missibaba 'Cha Ching Purse Bag' in one of its many forms would probably be a good place to start - it's fun, great for day to dancing the night away - hands free - and it's not going to break your back. Which materials / textures / colours do you enjoy experimenting with the most? I love colour and metallics, and mashing them all together. We are experimenting with combining leather with some sporty nylons at the moment. It's early days but a lot of fun! Check out the Missibaba store at 229 Bree Street in Cape Town. For more information about Missibaba’s products, visit missibaba.com. Interviewed by Katharyn Williams-Jaftha