Founded by Sophie Doodson, White Pear Designs is the culmination of family holidays to Knysna in South Africa where Sophie discovered an array of beautiful crafts, handmade by local talent.
Sophie originally trained as a make-up artist and went on to work within the TV and Film industry for 12 years, spending overseas which ignited her passion for local craftsmanship.
Now a very busy mother to three young kids Sophie wanted to bring her passion to life and after embarking on several family holidays to South Africa, Sophie discovered a range of beautiful local arts and crafts.
Wishing to share the work of these talented artists’ back home in the UK, Sophie has handpicked pieces from each of their collections and made them available through White Pear Designs. The result is a collaboration with South African artistic talent and a showcase of their best products.
From wooden furniture and homeware to patterned tote bags, cushions and pottery, the collection epitomizes South African style with clever designs and the use of vibrant colour.
The collection includes the ‘Love Seat’ and ‘Bankie (Bench)’ both of which are crafted from the staves of recovered old oak wine barrels and offer distinctive character and unique charm.
Ispy was created by designer Lauren in early 2013, based in the coastal town of Knysna in the Western Cape, it is here that all iSpy products are produced, and showcased in a shop in the centre of town.
Her love for bright colours and simplicity is evident in the cushion designs, which begin as sketches and doodles of just about anything from her beautiful surroundings.
Once a design is ready for production and colours have been chosen, it is then hand screen printed and then sewn together by a group of ladies from the local township, giving every cushion its own individuality.
Tanya started Pepper Tree back in 2010 cutting out the first design at her dining room table, 6 years later and Pepper Tree supply over 170 stores in South Africa and have also branched out internationally, exporting to London, Australia, Denmark and Dubai. People ask what sets their bags apart and why the brand continues to grow beyond expectations. It’s simple; they are passionate about local talent and believe that the people they work with create products that can compete with any in the world.
They actively source the best quality fabrics and leathers from South Africa, each bag pattern is cut by hand in the studio and then passed on to the team of talented seamstresses who ensure that there is quality in every stitch. These bags are durable and practical and Sophie has selected individual styles and designs that are real statement pieces.
Tucked away just outside Plettenberg Bay surrounded by some of the worlds most beautiful naturel forests sits a small showroom and workshop which is the home of Ilovani.
Sophie was drawn to Ilovani for their beautiful hand crafted products and for their passion about sustainability; using timber from accredited sources; implementing recovery programs – creating home ware & accessories using recycled glass, wood ‘off-cuts’ and utilizing redundant ‘wine barrel oak’ in functional designs.
They utilize skilled local craftsmen to create pieces of quality and unique character. The oak recovery items are made from the staves of old oak wine barrels. Part of the character of the oak recovery furniture is the dark stains on the wood that are made from years of soaking up red wine.
Since these items are made from reclaimed or off-cut material, pieces may vary in size or thickness, and we consider these cracks, imperfections, wear & colour variations as part of a wooden items unique character.