Hello 2019!!

Happy New Year everyone! 2018 was a thrilling year for Urban Afro Concept (UAC), full of much growth, interesting opportunities and important lessons. It’s been a year of ups and downs, but mostly ups, with a number of changes which we hope will make for an exciting 2019.

New year, new look

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Early last year, this style blog (and now online store) took on a new look and name. I’d wanted to give the blog a face-lift for some time but I wasn’t quite sure how to achieve that without changing the feel of the blog so drastically. I ultimately decided to swap out ‘Urban Afro Gypsy’ for ‘Urban Afro Concept.’ The sleek new logo, designed by my brother, Chileshe, and new name are a reflection of my own personal style as well as everything the UAC blog and jewellery collection symbolizes for me – Afro-urban chic, sophisticated simplicity and African elegance. The change signified a new chapter in the life of this blog and gave rise to a some of the other changes that took place over 2018.

Nonetheless, the biggest motivator behind the name change was a blog post I read on the Wrapsody LLC website  in which the owner –  who identifies as a Hungarian Gypsy – explains why she formally scrapped the original business name, ‘Gypsy Mama’. The word ‘gypsy’ is a pejorative term loaded with a myriad of negative connotations and has been used as a racial slur by many people in Europe over the years. Of course, I meant no disrespect whatsoever in incorporating the term into the name of my blog but naively likened some aspects of the Roma culture to my upbringing as an African third culture kid or ‘cultural nomad’. After conducting more extensive research, which I  admittedly should have done beforehand, I made the decision to drop the ‘gypsy’. I sincerely apologise to anyone who was offended by the old name. I made a grave mistake and have certainly learnt a great deal from the experience.

Launching the online store

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Another major change in 2018 was the launch of the UAC website plus online store in August. When I first began making jewellery in 2011, I never envisioned that things would get to this level. The site and store provide a convenient location for customers to get some of the hand-crafted gems that comprise the UAC collection and place orders for custom jewellery and accessories. The launch also saw the introduction of some new styles and different kinds of accessories in the collection including large wax print necklaces, beaded necklaces and bracelets for both men and women as well as rings and new styles of mixed-media earrings.

Custom jewellery

My jewellery-making skills grew and continued to grow throughout 2018. I’d taken on some exciting custom orders which challenged me creatively and gave me a chance to expand my repertoire. This is one of my absolute favourite aspects of the business because not only is it so much fun, it’s also such a wonderful feeling to see a customer wear and love something I created with by my own hand.

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What’s to come in 2019…

Since its inception the Urban Afro Concept blog and accessories line has been constantly expanding. 2018 has been its strongest year so far and saw it reach levels that exceeded my humble expectations. With all the changes UAC has undergone over the past year I’m still, admittedly, finding my feet. But I look forward to what 2019 will bring. One thing I’m looking forward to in particular is continuing to collaborate with my mother, Chimba, who is the designer and founder of Ethnique-Afrika. She’s been a great inspiration to me creatively as well as my biggest supporter and throughout last year, we embarked on a few small business projects together. I’m hoping to continue working with her to create more African-inspired custom fashion and accessories on a larger scale. I have high hopes for this year.

In closing, also want to say how very thankful I am to UAC fans for their loyalty and support. I would have never been able to achieve any of this without it. I’m super stoked for the year ahead and wish you all the best for it!

Here’s to a productive, positive and prosperous 2019!

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The Urban Afro Concept online store has finally gone LIVE!!!

As a self-taught jewellery designer I’m always looking to improve and expand my jewellery-making repertoire. I initially got my start in this enterprise way back in 2011 and since then my skills have developed exponentially. I made a few earrings to feed my addiction for this type of jewellery with a few bits and bobs my mother, a fashion designer, had lying around. I’d gotten a number of compliments while wearing the stuff I’d made which got me selling to friends and family. I never would have imagined this collection of accessories made by my own hand would grow to this level.

The accessories I’ve made for the UAC line are a reflection of my own Afroccentric personal style. Every single piece is special to me. It makes me incredibly happy when my customers enjoy wearing the jewellery as much I love making it. The collection now consists of earrings, bangles, bracelets, necklaces, rings and hairbands. I also recently expanded it to include some stuff that both men and women can enjoy.

Which brings me to the launch of the e-boutique. The new Urban Afro Concept website has gone live and I am absolutely ecstatic! I still can’t believe how far I’ve come. UAC fans can now shop my online store at www.urbanafroconcept.co.za for all the little gems I create. I’m so thankful to all the wonderful people in my life who have supported me on this journey from making two pairs of earrings to developing a fully-fledged online store. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for UAC. For now, please check out my site to browse the UAC lookbook and shop the store for the latest in my collection.

Happy shopping!


Shop UAC

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We offer worldwide shipping.

We offer FREE shipping for:

  • Orders within East London, Eastern Cape.
  • Domestic orders over R250.
  • International orders over R450.

Launch specials:

  • 30% of all wooden beaded necklaces
  • 30% off wax print ‘bubble’ necklaces

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