On Shelf
On Shelf

#OnShelf: Collaboration is key in staying relevant

by Louise Burgers. BIC and Bulldog Gin involve local designers to create special designs; and a Poetry range launches at Cape Union Mart.

by Louise Burgers. With a shift in global supply chains, collaboration with local suppliers and designers has never been more important and this week BIC and Bulldog Gin involve local designers to create special designs; and a Poetry range launches at Cape Union Mart.

Shining a light on Africa

BIC has launched an all-new pocket lighter range inspired and designed by local designers. The Afrilights range showcases the beauty of South Africa and Africa, and has been created with local relevance and creativity in mind. BIC invited South Africans to submit their inspiring images of the country to help create these one-of-a-kind lighters. There were over a thousand submissions from the public and the top 35 images made it into the 2020 Afrilights series, based on the quality of entries. Karen Moodley, BIC brand manager, lighters for South and Central Africa, said, “This creative and inspiring range of lighters showcases not only the beauty of our country, but the talented individuals who call South Africa home. We were overwhelmed by the amazing designs and images that were submitted. We are excited to see the range come to life and to have this be a yearly initiative.” The recently announced winners come from across the country, all lending their unique vision on what African beauty means to them. The new range is available at Pick n Pay, Game and Spar stores nationwide.

A designer activation for Bulldog Gin

Bulldog Gin, the contemporary London Dry Gin, has partnered with four local artists, designers and creatives to produce unique collaborative pieces that celebrate each creator’s individual craft and accomplished trade. Laurie Wiid Van Heerden of Wiid Design, Marie Aoun of Saint D’Ici, Bonolo Chepape of Lulasclan, and Bonga Jwambi, have each designed and created craft pieces while taking inspiration from the qualities and characteristics of the gin brand. The collaboration is part of Bulldog’s efforts to support and celebrate local design, as the brand resonates with the independence of those who seek to carve out their own paths, write their own story and pioneer the unconventional. A total of 12 items have been created from the collaboration’s efforts, with furniture from Bonga Jwambi, woven artwork by Bonolo Chepape, a gin-inspired botanical scent by Marie Aoun, and a glassware set from Laurie Wiid van Heerden. The brand’s customers stand a chance to win one of the 12 exclusive collaborative pieces when purchasing a limited-edition Bulldog Gin pack that is currently in stores until the end of December 2020.

Rare Earth re-launches  at Cape Union Mart

Rare Earth, the exclusive women’s clothing brand, will re-launch its new seasonal capsule for summer exclusively at Cape Union Mart stores. Rare Earth was a house brand that lived under the Poetry umbrella, and included accessories, garments and footwear known for being functional, technical and made for the outdoors. The new summer capsule will include three categories: Safari, Outdoor Active and Travel Accessories. According to Poetry creative director, Johan van der Merwe, the Rare Earth re-launch at Cape Union Mart was inspired by consumers’ shift in buying behaviour.

“Being someone who is constantly on the move, locally and internationally, I noticed the shift in people’s behaviour and how they look at their wardrobes. Gone are the days when you chased the latest fast fashion trend or disposable fashion garments. I noticed the need for a well-curated and considered collection of wardrobe essentials; products that consumers can find and wear again and again. Something that lives throughout the seasons and that is ideal for the everyday uniform.” Following a mass consumer movement for shoppers to invest in local and more sustainable brands, Van der Merwe confirms Rare Earth answers to both: “Our current contribution of locally manufactured goods is 26%. We are committed to growing this contribution through investing in and our constant focus on developing our local skills and technologies.”



Louise Burgers (previously Marsland) is the Publisher and Editor and Co-Founder of RetailingAfrica.com. She has spent over 20 years writing about the FMCG retailing, marketing, media and advertising industry in South Africa and on the African continent. She has specialised in local and Africa consumer trends and is a passionate Afro-optimist who believes it is Africa’s time to rise again and that the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) will be a global gamechanger in the next decade.


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