Clinton Friedman Special!


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It’s a WHOLESALE SPECIAL at Clinton Friedman for today only.

20% off Wall Art and 15% off Scatter cushions! Be sure to order by midnight of the 7th December.

♥ Deb



Monday's Must Have's

Ok, so I know I might be early, but im 6 months pregnant and expecting my #2 mid December, so I know I wont be in the Christmas shopping mood in December, because lets face it, my feet will probably be swollen and running after my 9 month old will be exercise enough! So … much to some people’s horror, I have decided to get Christmas shopping early, to avoid any missions down the road.

Here from Maiden Name are some must have’s …  ok ill be honest, they are all Christmas gifts for ME! ha ha. I have mentioned MN before over here … But get over the their website and see for yourself.

There are some awesome gifts and very reasonable prices.



Maiden Name Satchel +/- 250mm x 170mm


Bar necklace solid wood bar pendant 50mm x 10mm


Dipped mug (small 70mm diameter x 90mm high) 
R90 each


Voëltjie butter dish 


Salt&Pepper pyramids (55mm x 55mm x 55mm) 
R90 per set


Ceramic Owl family set of three in black or white 


Triangle place mats set of four 
2Hanger in grey, white, turquoise or yellow
For teatowels, scarves, hats, jewelry, keys etc PLEASE NOTE: Not strong enough for coats.

Ubuntu at The Crags







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Skilled textile workers get creative for their village. Not only do they work in textiles but they sew the most beautiful linen of which Woolworths offer in their stores and make african flavored bags, dolls and dresses to say the least. These women have come together to put their skills to work and have in turn created a business that sells products to boutiques and large retailers. This is an achievement and make me excited to see talented people working together and excelling in what they love doing.






♥ Oh my goodness! I’m so excited to share with you about this amazing women!!!

A few weeks back I was delighted to catch up with local creative Julie Smith-Belton. She is lovely. Filled with such calm and peace. You would think, being a mother of 3 and home schooling her children that she would perhaps hold some sort of frantic atmosphere with her, though with much respect I can say Julie is the opposite.

A few years back I saw her sewing work at a market at one of our local churches. I then wanted to interview her but have just not managed it until now! (naughty me) If you read the Ideas Magazine (September issue) you would have seen that Julie won the Celebrating Creativity Competition. Her Riaan Cruywagen doll (see below) was one of many wonderful and creative  contributing ideas from all around South Africa. When I was interviewing her a few weeks back, Ideas where about to come and see her at home and interview her for the October issue. Have any of you seen or read the October issue yet? I recommend it!! Or check out her BLOG for the ins and outs! I’ve added some pics of other sewing projects she has done as well as her photography – her list of creativity is endless and I just love it!

So I spent an afternoon speaking to Julie, getting to know this photographer, graphic designer, creative, mother and wife. Julie is a sister of a good friend, we have not really connected on a personal level before but after that day with her and finding a common ground which is simplicity, i can honestly say she has become a mate. I can totally relate to the desire of living a simple life. Julie shared her heart to follow Gods will in their lives, to let go of all the hindrances that strap you down. Rory and Julie’s passion to travel the world with their family has taken wings as they sold the unnecessary possession around their home and downsizing from a 3 bedroom unit to a modest and cosy home with a lot less ‘stuff”.

She is a stay at home mom to 3 adorable children. It’s not common these days to have a south african mom stay at home looking after the family but that is an important factor for both Julie and Rory. Their humble and calm approach to raising children is quite refreshing. I found that Julie taught her kids to live life instead of just going through the process of life and she teaches them that in such a creative way. Being practical and letting them learn things through doing it themselves and learning consequences for mistakes. I think it takes a lot of the pressure off the parent to allow your children to learn from their mistakes instead of trying to fix it for them all the time. I recently got advice that said “Children don’t do what you say, they do what you do“. 

Julie’s background is in graphic design, she is self-taught in photography and has become quite phenomenal at it. She shoots the odd wedding or occasion should she feel the passion for it and never forces herself to be creative for the work but to rather be creative when the mood takes her. I think if one is able do that then it feels like you never ‘work’ a day in your life!  Her graphic design and creative nature sure is inspiring in such an honest and real way.

One of the reasons why Julie and her husband Rory decided on home school their children is to make the most of the years and to teach a natural way. They felt this year was a year of grace. You may feel otherwise or you may agree, whatever you feel its your choice. I admire Julie for taking it head on and trusting her own choices. The best thing about parenting in Julie’s eyes is having a love inside her that she has never experienced before. 

On the creative side, her creative outlet is blogging, sewing, graphic design, photography and decorating. I bought one of her Humpback whales for my little baby’s room-Too stunning for words. (see pic)

Other sewing projects…

Saturday’s for the Smith-Belton’s include being out and about going to the beach, riding bikes,playing Lego and just being a family unit. For moms seeking a great place to eat with kids, Julie recommend88 Degrees Cafe at gateway, Mercedes coffee shop  in Umhlanga, Botanical gardens and Kids world in Ushaka.

Another idea and a super one at that, was creative workshops held at The Rock church. Thanks to Julie, Jil and Monique it has flourished a few times and included women/men  from all walks of life, getting together and being creative. Ideas Magazine even featured the 1st creative evening in their June issue! You will be advised by me if any more happen, unless you follow her blog yourself.

I’m telling you this women is amazing and she has a wonderful and sincere heart that travels with her all day, its easy to enjoy her company and its even more inspiring just knowing her. That is why I just had to share humble creative with you guys. You heard about her on Creative Stream 1st! haha

All photos area from Julie’s Blog Ludo Police.



I am delighted to share with you about Maiden Name. It’s a local South African brand and online shop that offers handmade and hand painted products. They offer a category for your home and a category for you. It’s all so personal and I’m totally in love with their products. A lot of wood items are seen around the net and shops. Also the love for triangles. Maiden Name offers uniquely and handcrafted good that will most definitely add character and a fresh touch to your style or home. They are also EXTREMELY well priced. It’s not often you get such good products at such competitive prices. I’m getting my Christmas list in order as I know shopping with a new-born, might not as easy as with just J and myself this year.

Here are their awesome products…

To place an order, please click HERE.


Very exciting news for all you CT residents! Kirsten Goss and Missibab is opening shop today!!!!

Go to 229 Bree Street. They open Monday to Friday from 9am – 5pm or call them on 021 424 3453 if you have any questions. I wish I was in Cape town for this but alas I will have to wait …

Another delight from the Goss gang is if you pop in during this week you can receive a celebratory kg gift
for any purchases over R1 000.



INTERVIEW- Nicola Ashe

I spent days trying to find a way to introduce this woman to you. I found she needed an entrance. For the life of me, nothing seemed to fit well enough. I know most of you know her. She was the first person to ever communicate with me via blogging. She always held such truth. She made me cry with laughter many times, I’m sure my office thought I was barking mad. Her personality lit up any situation and her fetish for white decor and stationary got my attention. Open and honest, real and informative fits this wonder women quite nicely. Stylish and unique, hardcore and sweet are sure oxymoron’s for her. If you are part of any South African social, entertainment or retail industry or simply a night owl in and around Durban you have crossed paths with her no doubt.  Known by her knowledge of what’s hot and what’s not in Durban and surrounds, you can be sure to receive genuine updates on monthly hot spots, trendy stores, market notices and restaurant reviews. She brightens your day with on-line magazines and includes you in her fetish finds. You can also count your lucky stars that she is who she is because without her I doubt Durban would have such a kick-butt market attendance. Lets face it – you heard first on Ask Ashe!

I wanted to get to know the women behind the blog, the creative she is and the love she has for our city. Nicola is such an open and welcoming person in this blogging world. The blogging sphere can get quite intimidating at times and I have always admired her for her matter of frankness. I know she appreciates good grammar & spelling and even when mine needed some attention, she still liked my posts and shared the love.  I have learnt to be open to correction.

Behind every good blog is a wise, warm and unique character. Be it with a brutal sense of humour or a cool zest for life. CS has interviewed Nicola asking her about the bits and bobs of life, her passions and Durban.

Tell us about when you were younger-where did you go to school? What was your fave subject? Did you always have a creative side?
I went to an all girls school in Durban. My memories of school are not fond though, I don’t yearn for them at all 😉 – they were a pretty long time ago too!
I loved history (still do) and I took art which I suppose is where my creative side first blossomed, but I was pretty crap at the traditional painting and drawing. I studied interior design after school at Natal Tech and then a few year’s after that studied web design. I’ve never worked as an interior designer, it’s become more of a hobby, but I worked in web design for a few years and this is where I learned how to ‘design’ and edit graphics for the web.

Is there a time where you realized Graphic design was your career or did it just happen that way? How did this career path start?
I soon realised that I was far better at organising (read bossing) than I was at designing and I moved into project management and client services. I’ve worked at some of Durban’s top design and production companies and now work at an ad agency in client services.
I love graphic design and am in awe of the amazing things graphic designers can produce, be it by hand or computer and I go weak at the knees for beautiful or clever typography. But I leave the design to the professionals and love my career to bits.

What’s the best thing about what you do(work)? What’s the best thing about blogging?
No two days are the same in my job. One day I’m taking a brief on a new packaging range, the next I’m sourcing 1500 biscuits for a tea party! The people I work with are extremely creative and inspiring and the company I work for is just awesome – sometimes it doesn’t even feel like work… I love it.
Blogging however, is a complete outlet for the mess in my head. My blog is called Ask Ashe because I’ve always been asked questions about everything – “where do I get this?, what’s the best restaurant for that?, when is this on?, how do I do this”, so I was nicknamed ‘askashe’. The blog is now an extension of those recommendations and referrals, mixed in with a bit of tongue-in-cheek and of course my love of interiors (especially white ones!)

What would you NEVER leave the house without?
I’m pretty easy going, I can fly out of the house with no make up or cellphone, but it’s best that I don’t 😉 – at least a lash of mascara so I don’t scare the children!

Who would you want to have coffee with?  And why?
My future husband, I want to know what took him so long 😉
That might take a while though, so I’d choose Richard Branson, half an hour with him would be so inspiring.

Can you give 3 words-of-advice to anyone interested in graphic design, advertising or blogging?
Don’t compromise integrity.

What has been your most memorable moment in your life so far? (Or is that an unfair question?) 🙂
Not getting married at 25, best decision I ever made. I can only say this with hindsight though.


Would you ever want to write a book? And if so what about?

One day I will write my memoirs, but then I’d have to burn them… I’d get far too many people into trouble 😉

I love that you are who you are and say what you say, what key points can you give someone who is wanting to pursue a dream, yet does not have the courage?
I came about attaining my dreams the hard way, learning many a lesson along the way. And I haven’t yet got them all. I believe networking is the key to opening myriad opportunities. It’s amazing what you can find out just by talking to someone or reading about something and then tying those 2 entities together. So get out there, or get online and start networking with people you admire or can relate to, you’ll be amazed at how similar most of us are and how willing people are to help you out or give advice. However, don’t believe everything you’re told and never be afraid to have your own opinion on anything. There’s nothing more spineless and uninspiring that someone who agrees with everything you say!

As you recently bought your own place, have you found the decorating and renovating easy? The decorating part will be the fun, easy part once the renovating is done. It’s the renovation part that’s proving to be a ball ache! Unreliable suppliers who work at their own pace, having to get plans passed, boring body corporate’s, silly rules and having to wait for walls to be knocked down before I can do anything else means I’m completely uninspired and brain addled with ideas at the same time. It’s quite frustrating having to wait – the longer you wait, the more times you change your mind! I’ll be documenting the renovations on my blog, so as soon as my plans are approved you can expect many a post and picture.

Click on Ask Ashe Abode logo to follow her Reno progress, if you don’t already follow her blog.

What would a weekend in Durban be like if you could take someone on a tour of our finest places and events? It would have to be a long weekend jam-packed with food, crafts and sights including breakfast at Corner Cafe, a whirl around the I Heart Market, shopping at iKhaya, The Space, Karrin Hatfield, lunch at Craft, a dinner at Livingston’s, cocktails at Billy’s, a quick steak at Butcher Boys, sushi & tapas nibbles at Czar, more shopping at Fat Tuesday and then walk or ride it all off along Durban’s promenade at sunset with a mango daiquiri on Moyo Pier.

Regarding being creative, What’s your outlet?
I’m around creatives and creativity all day, so when I get home and need to unwind, it’s usually with a game of sudoku, a book or lately I play myself at Scrabble! It’s addictive! (there’s an iPad app where you can play yourself so I don’t set up a board and look like a complete retard 😉 )
I’ve also been known to watch a marathon of tv series’ in one sitting – no one saw me for days when I discovered Spartacus, Game of Thrones and Sons of Anarchy!
If I’m feeling creative, I blog or read through over 900 blogs I follow via bloglovin (amazing site – highly recommended)

Name your top 5 creative’s? Alberto Vargas, Rob Ryan, anyone who designs for Ikea, anyone who designs for Fred & friends, Yoshitomo Nara

What would be in your handbag right now? Ipad, blackberry (oh the irony), keys, notebooks, wet wipes (can’t live without these critters!), pens and pencils, makeup bag, numerous hair elastics, business cards, wallet filled with every loyalty card imaginable, gum.

What’s the best thing about your home? It’s all mine 🙂

What would be your dream holiday destination? Anywhere cool where cozzies are not required. Hate the sun, don’t do sand or sea and should have been born in Iceland. A skiing trip with mates would be awesome.

What’s the most mouth-watering dish you have ever tasted and where was it?
I eat out a LOT and have had many amazing meals, but there are only 2 I always fall back on when I think about my favourites. The first is the lentil & feta and calamari combo from Mo’s Noodles and the 2nd is a rib eye steak from either Livingston’s or Butcher Boys served with creamed spinach.

What is the coolest home interior item to get right now?
Everyone is on the green, eco wagon, so sustainable energy, appliances and materials are all the rage. My one contribution to this movement will be installing a gas hob – cannot wait to get that baby fired up!

Who cracks the nod as the most desired artist/art work in Durban at the moment?
Difficult question! I think anyone creative is an artist, so it doesn’t have to be an artist in the true sense of the word. I know Durban has a wealth of creative talent and the desired items I most covet are from small businesses like Cupcake Couture, iKhaya and I Love Bokkie, or KOOP, the Shaw Sisters and Clinton Friedman.

What’s the most valuable lesson learnt while being overseas?
I had my first ‘corporate’ job overseas. I worked for a team of traders at a large multi-national company. Make yourself indispensable to people like this and you’re set! I was nicknamed ‘komodo’ because I kept them all on their toes at the grand old age of 21 😉


Personality…..makes a home, a home
Relaxation and me time …..are what weekends are about
My favorite book at the moment is…… any new James Patterson, haven’t read one in a few months though (*makes mental note…)
Blogging is……an escape into the mind of my alter ego.
My next purchase for my home is…..bathroom sanitary ware and kitchen appliances
If I was a super hero, I would….make all lemon meringue pies fat free
The close proximity to everything…..Is the best thing about living in Durban

You just got to love her! Follow Nicola on Twitter here or her blog here

Photo credits: Nicola Ashe, SafariNow, RoomsForAfrica, The Space, Fat Tuesday, Travel Start, Karrin Hatfield, Elle Decor.