So as you all know I love to support local and started a segment where we could share, learn and inspire! It is so important to support local and share your findings with others.
During lock down, we are going to do a whole lot of these to highlight these businesses – many of which are taking HUGE strain during this time – and shed some awareness and love to all.
I have discovered the most special lady, Inge who has shared two local businesses with us. Her first business is called Unsung Art. This is a divine local business that gives you access to an online gallery where you can buy local art for your home or office, and send as a gift! Please check out their Instagram page and give them a follow. Here is the website where you can shop online for your newest piece of art!
Inge also has a stunning jewellery range under the brand Inge Louise Jewellery. Check out their website to shop online for a beautiful and unique piece for yourself or a friend. And give them a follow please on Instagram and Facebook pages too!
We chatted to the lovely #girlboss Inge and this is what she had to say!
Tell us a little bit about your business.
I run 2 small businesses. The first is Unsung Art which has been a labour of love for 6 years and now full time. We are an online gallery for emerging and established South African artists. Our aim is to give more amazing South African artists a platform to show and sell their work without the fuss of having to apply to be in a formal gallery as well as give customers an easy way to browse and purchase art from the comfort of their own space any time of the day.
All our parcels are delivered with our signature packaging to create a special experience to all our customers. What is better than unwrapping a gift to you from you?
Secondly, I started my own Jewellery brand about a year ago called Inge Louise Jewellery. All of the Jewellery is designed and handmade by myself in a range metals.
The work is truly unique and custom pieces are all one of a kind.
I specialize in symbology, unusual stones and resin work to create designs that are elegant with an edge.
What are the top 3 learnings you have had to find out the hard way since starting your own business?
Always save for a rainy day. So don’t over extend your spending because you can afford that new piece of equipment now.
Don’t forget yourself. You need know when to switch off and do something for yourself for at least an hour a day. I found it was too easy to work all day every day from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep. So remember to put in your 8 hours like a normal person.
Don’t forget how important marketing is to your business. It is the only way people find out more about you and your brand. Be consistent and say it with your own voice.
Where do you see your business in 5 years? Once we have gotten over the effects of the lock down.
I would love to have my own design store stocking a range of artworks, functional artisanal pieces and Jewellery. As well as be able to create employment for others in our community, small businesses are going to be the way we support and rebuild our economy.
What is your advice to individuals out there wanting to start their own businesses but are too scared?
I was always too scared to go out and work for myself full time. It is incredibly scary but, if you don’t at least try you will always regret that more. There is no better motivator than diving in and having to swim.
There will always be good days and bad but taking that chance is the best thing you can ever do for yourself and your self confidence. No matter what, you will know that you have given your all and proved your worth to yourself.
Tell us 2 things that are the BEST part about owning your own business and make it all worth while?
The best thing about owning your own business is the independence. Although I do tend to be a terribly hard boss to myself by pushing that little bit extra and feeling guilty for taking a weekend off. I am now starting to find the balance and once you do find that balance of personal and professional that is when you find true happiness.
Owning your own business is such an amazing confidence booster. I have never been more proud of myself for actually taking that leap.
How has lock down affected you, your business and your team?
Lockdown has definitely affected the Jewellery business as I have lost some sales avenues with the markets being closed as well as a lot of stores. This has given me time to take things online for that business.
I have also had to rethink the way I do things as I work from home now so creating a client base that is not reliant on walk ins and physical displays.
Unsung Art has had a whole lot of time to sit and revamp the site, our marketing as well as start a podcast series to chat to some of our artists and give advice to people who want to sell their work or want to start painting and drawing.