Did you know?
The Little Shoppe and Studio crafters created a life-size rhinoceros wire sculpture in aid of The Rhino Project – an anti-poaching initiative.
The Little Shoppe and Studio in Hermanus was started in 2008 by Alda du Plooy, who rented a 3m2 room at a bookshop. She wanted to provide a trade space for local crafters. Today, this Hermanus social enterprise supports 38 Overberg wire art crafters and their work has become known far and wide.
Now exported from London to Moscow and beyond, wire has established itself as a contemporary art form.
Alda’s initial vision quickly changed when two crafters, Bongani Chenera and Farayi Mukonde, approached her. They showed Alda their wire art, and the three of them became partners in what is now the Little Shoppe and Studio.
The initiative has thrived and is a proudly expanding enterprise focused on creating a sustainable income through creative design for artists in the Overberg area. The cooperative studio space is full of life and boasts a showroom where you can interact with crafters.
You can simply walk in and browse, but much of the income is generated from outside orders. Restaurants request customised spice racks, for example, which are designed according to the restaurant’s brand and then sold wholesale. Similarly, jewellers often ask for custom designs.
Products are made from locally sourced wire and recycled electric wire is also used, which adds colour to the pieces.
The present industrial area location at Hermanus Village Square now gives the main studio more space for wire art production. It can also accommodate the associated pottery and textile initiatives that have gained ground. This Village Square space, generously made available by a sponsor, is where you can meet the crafters, view storyboards of the products’ journeys, and attend occasional workshops.