We had the opportunity of interviewing Thami Nyembe founder and owner of Luthando Beadazzling Designs. Here is what she had to say:
Q: When and how did the business open?
A: It started in March 2011 when I woke up with a dream of designing jewellery. It was really a spiritual change that I found myself tagging my daughter to a nearby beadshop one morning. I then started creating things I have never learned, and it was liberation of the soul really.3. How long has it been operating?
It has been operating for 1year three months now.
Q: Tell us more about your business?
A: Luthando Beadazzling Designs is a creation of elegant and luxury designer jewellery. Using ancient methods of defining people in society through types of beads and gemstones used in our designer pieces, also as healing ornaments for various discomfort; and as charms. These ancient methods have been taken and made into designer items to suit a modern man and women. We design and sell exquisite collection of contemporary, African ethnic, unique and ethnographic jewellery. The business specializes in fine variety of necklaces, earrings, bracelets, bangles, watches, beaded belts, brooches, rings, beaded bags, and hair bands. We constantly work at developing new ideas. We also teach beading skills as part of our social development program to the youth in our community. We offer high quality handcrafted jewellery to those that are looking for that one unique design piece that they just can’t find anywhere else; and each design is one of a kind. And we pride ourselves on high quality craftsmanship, uniqueness of design, personal friendly service, and attention to detail, color combinations and the design aesthetics of the jewellery pieces we create. “LUTHANDO BEADAZZLING DESIGNS is a family run unit, with a professional approach and a home; touch; the personal jeweller that wants to ensure you’re always beautifully accessorized for all occasions.” I envision being a global player of lifestyle fashion accessories with our own brands, product-lines, and excellent service standards. Our unique, creative and innovative products are designed with perceptive customers in mind.
Q: Take us through a typical day in the life of Thami?
A: A family orientated women that wakes up in the morning, practices ancient chants and disciplines. See off the domestic matters before hitting professional mode that normally takes a great part of the day, with attending to orders, designing jewellery, meetings and making deliveries.
Q: Share a highlight of your career?
A: Winning the FNB/RCCI Business Excellence Awards 2011. And the unique approach to the business side of things.
Q: Would you encourage young South Africans to start their own business?
A: Yes Indeed. We South Africans have something unique to sell. we need to follow our own book of business. Our hidden talents and fortunes are stored in that ideal. As a jewellery designer I have realised that, the survival of traditional crafts is seriously threatened, and it is on the edge of extinction. Artisans have abandoned their centuries-old traditions and wealth of knowledge and skills because of lack of ambition and resources. Many have been unable to express their artistic talents as a consequence of poverty and misery. But few have kept their traditions alive by their belief that their skill is a God-given gift and that it is their duty to hand it down to generations to come. Luthando Beadazzling Designs will work towards halting the slipping away of local traditions of art into the oblivion of history by teaching the youth crafting skills.8. What are some of the biggest challenges you face as a business owner?
Lack of resources sometimes to make sure business runs smooth, marketing and publicity of the brand and the struggle of getting into the retail market. And sadly seeing copies and duplication of your work as someones’s glory and success. But it wouldn’t be business of it didn’t have challenges, and I’ve learned that every trial, tribulation and obstacle brings me closer to something bigger. And I live on prayer and hope that the fruits I see in my future as a result of my work, are insync with those of my Creater. Every challenge is a test of how badly I want my Creaters plan to unfold.
Q: Three things you wish you knew when you started your business?
1.) That there’s always a curve called failure, a loop called confusion, speed bumps and red lights called enemies in business.
2.) Sometimes people who help don’t necessarily have your best interest at heart, and that you don’t need certain people for things you can do yourself.
3.) All the legalities on how to protect my business from piracy.
Q: How can people contact you?
A: They can get hold of me via email –
Visit my website – http://www.lubeade-designs.co.za Or visit my Facebook Page – facebook/lubeade or my twitter handle @nyembet
Q: How do you personally define success?
A: Success is knowing where your truest passions are and structuring a sustainable environment where you keep improving and creating a solid independent and unique product that defines you and the market that loves and supports the work. To achieve success you need to have a spare called Determination, and engine called Perseverance and insurance called Faith; and having someone behind you to make all of this happen. And I just happen to to be blessed with my family for that. When someone truly believes in you, that power gives you unimaginable strength to succeed
Thanks to Thami for taking time to answer our questions, we wish her all the best.