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Ikhaya.. The zulu name for My home… and an ode to my grand mother. 


Ikhaya by Karishma Design is an exquisite range that pays homage to the memories of life on the farm and the profound influence of my grandmother, my beloved "gogo." This collection is a nostalgic journey into my past, immersed in the wisdom and resourcefulness of wise old women, who despite their illiteracy, possessed an innate education. Inspired by their craftsmanship, Ikhaya embodies the reinvention of textiles, evoking the vibrant colors reminiscent of spices used to create delectable pickled mangoes. Each piece tells a story, narrating the daily routines of farm life, from the repurposed milk cartons that served as planters to the cherished button jar overflowing with mismatched treasures.


One enduring memory is the button jar, a magical candy-like vessel filled with colorful and mismatched buttons, each whispering tales of their previous lives, awaiting new adventures when sewn onto garments. I recall spending countless hours playing with those buttons, stitching them onto various items, imagining their individual histories. This was my first sewing lesson from my gran, an experience I later passed down to my own son. The button jar symbolizes the art of mending and makery, a testament to the simple joys and creativity embedded in rural life.


A sewing kit from at least 75 years ago

My grandmother's trusty manual Singer sewing machine played a pivotal role in transforming cotton bags into bedding and hand-sewn quilts. These layered Indian quilts, crafted from odd textiles, became cherished blankets adorned with flower motifs created from fabric scraps. During gatherings with her sister, they would embroider and paint their saris, perpetuating a legacy of constant crafting, adding value to existing materials. This spirit of renewal and recreation reverberated throughout my upbringing, with lunch papers repurposed, old bags transformed into charming tea cloths, and the reinvention of fabrics using remnants found in our studio.


The earthy tones of Ikhaya, infused with oranges, mustard yellows, browns, black, and cream, encapsulate the essence of the farm. Each design feature holds symbolic importance, from inventing textiles through needlework, patchwork, and upcycling to the incorporation of bedding, tablecloths, and old curtains adorned with embroidery, hand painting, punch work, and applique. The collection showcases basic shapes that can be lovingly hand-sewn into garments, while pins and beading serve as delicate accents.

Each piece in the range is a testament to the inventive spirit of these wise elders, who repurposed textiles, reinvented colors reminiscent of exotic spices, and embodied the routines of farm life. The memories of milk carton planters, a button jar brimming with colorful stories, and the presence of an old manual Singer sewing machine conjure visions of mending, making, and creativity. The range captures the essence of hand-sewn quilts, embroideries on saris, and the reimagining of scraps into unique fabrics. With earthy tones infused with oranges, mustard yellows, and browns, the collection celebrates the elemental beauty of the farm. "Ikhaya" is a poetic tribute to heritage, a craft that connects generations and keeps the wisdom of the past alive.


It is a tribute to the simplicity, ingenuity, and profound connection to the earth that has forever shaped my identity—a testament to the meaning of "home" in the warm embrace of my Zulu/ Indian heritage.

Exhibtion: DUT, BTECH  Final Exhibition

Westville Community Exhibtion 

Pop up flash mob style events in Cape Town, Johanaessburg and Durban 2008/ 2009

Made in South Africa.. Waterloo township. Designed in the fields and garden of my ancestral home

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