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At Decorex NEXT24 Showcases 24 South African Brands Ready to Take on the World

Don’t miss these local craft and design brands on show at Decorex 2024

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By Kimberley Schoeman  | June 1, 2024 | Design

An exciting curated selection of craft and design brands from all corners of South Africa, chosen for their potential to enter the international market, will be on display as part of NEXT24, at Decorex Cape Town from 6-9 June 2024 at the CTICC.

Our lucky readers can redeem a pair of tickets to visit Decorex Cape Town inside every copy of our May/June issue. During one of the two opening days of South Africa’s biggest and most bold design show, your tickets grant you an exciting visit on either Friday 6 June or Saturday 7 June. Get your copy here.

The annual NEXT trade exhibition, which was launched in 2018, is proudly presented by the Craft and Design Institute (CDI), a South African non-profit with more than two decades of success in developing creative people, small businesses, and the craft and design sector at large throughout the country. The seventh iteration of NEXT will see 24 exhibitors showcasing their wares and is coordinated by the CDI’s Fran Stewart. The exhibition is aimed primarily at buyers who are sourcing for the global market but also accommodates interested local retailers.

The Maata Pita Table Lamp by Ananta Design Studio. Image: Supplied.

NEXT24 will introduce 12 new participants and will welcome back 12 former exhibitors. First-timers include former Design Indaba Emerging Creatives Leila Atelier and Ananta Design Studio, upcyclers Plasticity, uniquely African jewellery brands Ditakki and Zulu Mien, and Karoo Baba’s Merino sheepskin products.

A beaded Purna Vase by Ananta Design Studio. Image: Supplied.

Overall, this year’s cohort places a strong focus on ethical design that ranges from the sourcing of materials to the crafting processes themselves, and prioritises quality over quantity as brand integrity is established in the international market. ‘We’ve seen some stand-out work in our product sessions – fresh, contemporary and exciting – and we can’t wait for the public and buyers to get a glimpse of them at Decorex,’ said Stewart.

All NEXT24 exhibitors are coached through the CDI’s export development programme, which has supported more than 70 businesses since inception. This programme has been running for several years and was initiated and run with the support of the Dutch Centre for the Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries (CBI).

A beaded Purna Vase by Ananta Design Studio. Image: Supplied.

NEXT has seen its past participants go on to further success. Last year’s NEXT23 participant Bonolo Chepape of Lulasclan, a uniquely African textile brand, recently opened a store in The Watershed at the V&A Waterfront. For Chepape, the CDI’s export training helped her to become ‘export-ready and to identify the sweet spots where I could possibly improve my product and marketing. It was such a valuable programme to be in,’ she said.

The Mason Cushion Cover by Leila Atelier, who will be showing at NEXT24. Image: Supplied.

Alongside the physical exhibition at Decorex Cape Town, which features pieces from all 24 participants and welcomes guests to engage with the exhibitors themselves, a digital catalogue will be made available to those not able to attend the show.