One Fine Beginning – A South African Leather Brand

14 February 2020

“One Fine Beginning” is a small but beautiful, South African Brand. Their exquisitely crafted leather goods, are 100% South African, from the sourcing of the leather, to the craftsmen involved, to the distribution and sale of the end product.

There is definitely something to be said about handcrafted leather goods, and “One Fine Beginning” has done well to keep their product pure. They are a South African Brand with a big heart and although every part of their business is South African, they now also ship worldwide. They have been doing beautiful work for close to 5 years now.

Assembly line products just do not have the ‘soul’ that handcrafted goods have. This is the indistinguishably, unique and pure product promise of OFB, “One Fine Beginning.” Each garment, leather product, or pair of shoes, is beautifully and adeptly stitched together by hand. There is no mass production, keeping the products and quality control perfect!

“One Fine Beginning” has an array of lovingly crafted shoes. The craftsmanship of each pair, is faultless. Their standards are maintained because there is no mass production.

They have an beautiful website: http://onefinebeginning.com/ which is both visually appealing and informative. “One Fine Beginning” also has great service. They offer secure payment options too. How do I know this? I have purchased a pair of flats myself. I was fortunate enough to visit them in store in Middelburg, South Africa. Their quirky little shop, is an absolute gem in the Mall in Middelburg. The staff were not only helpful but very knowledgeable with regards to the products. Before the year is over, I would like to purchase something else from them. Possibly a pair of boots, or a lovely handbag. Because it’s not yet on my list, it will have to wait for the perfect time though, but I can 100% recommend this brand with confidence.

I purchased my only pair of red flats from them in July 2018 and they are still in excellent condition. “One Fine Beginning’ have typical South African sizing and mine fit me perfectly. They do cater for a bit of a broader foot, as I have broad feet and these did not need to be stretched. I have been so content with this pair of shoes and will continue to get wear out of them for years to come. I adore the red colour and they are just perfect with my red and white striped dress for Valentine’s Day.

Belinda xo

“Wearing it Twice” Challenge

by Belinda


 

If you follow us on Instagram, you will know that Matilda and I are fond of doing challenges. We love to push ourselves where fashion is concerned. Neither one of us, has any kind of training or history of working in the fashion industry. We are just a couple of moms who got bored with life and decided to join Social Media, and share our journey with fashion very publicly! Scary!!! We know, but we’re anything but shy of a challenge, so the challenges we set out to do every month on IG, reflect how we feel on the inside – Doing it afraid!

We were inspired by someone else’s feed, who was #wearing it again. I don’t remember exactly who that was, but it gave us an idea of wearing an item of clothing from the previous day, again. We decided to include shoes in this challenge. For that, I’m so grateful. You will see that on Day 4, I wore cream culottes. They did not look great at the end of the day, so I wore my slides again the following day instead.

I think a large part of the ‘challenge’ in #wearing it again, is that we are in summer and we are literally wearing one layer. It’s also been so darn hot this month. We started with a few cooler days, but literally since the third day, it’s been sweltering. I have tried my best to stay cool and not get sweaty. We all know, there’s nothing worse in summer, than rewearing smelly clothes. Hence the reason we made the decision to include shoes as part of the ‘rewear it’ wardrobe.

What, if anything, has this challenge taught me so far?

It’s really not necessary to wash clothing as often as I do. If it’s not dirty, hang the item up on a hanger to air overnight, and place it back in the cupboard the next day. This will definitely help the environment. I haven’t read any statistics, but can you just imagine if every household of 2-4 people could do one load of washing less per week, what the positive impact of that could be on the environment? Less water, less electricity, less product in the water to be cleaned. Less waste all around. This excites me, even if I found no other reason.

But I did. People don’t notice that you’re wearing the same garment again. You create a totally new outfit with the piece you decide to rewear, so no-one specifically commented that I’m wearing it again. The only person so far to notice that I wore anything again, was my daughter who still lives at home. She works as a chef and gets so sweaty and hot in the kitchen. She asked if my white lacy top, didn’t smell too bad. I told her I didn’t exert myself at all whilst wearing it, so no, I didn’t feel grubby wearing it again. She did give me a sniff, and then remarked I smelt like perfume. She wasn’t kidding. I have been dousing myself a bit, to ensure there are no odours.

Another thing I noticed is that whereas I planned quite a bit in the beginning of the month, I’m now just winging it. Each evening, I decide what item I’m going to rewear, and the following morning, I make a snap decision. It’s been rather fun doing it this way. I do find though, that if I know something is coming up in the week, and I have an idea of what outfit I’d like to wear that day, I do then plan accordingly.

I will possibly have more to share on this challenge by the end of October, on lessons learned and conscious fashion changes I will probably want to make, but for now, I’m taking it day by day.

Belinda xo

French Toast Our Way

by Matilda


Growing up, we used to eat French Toast with marmite and tomato sauce or syrup if you fancied something sweet. Yes. We had no class at all. I didn’t even know that cream cheese existed until I was about twelve years old. My children don’t like any of the classy or less classy condiments that can go with french toast, but they love it our way.

First of all I want to come clean. This way of eating french toast is in no way healthy – it is a treat. White bread that is a bit stale, works the best. I remove the crusts from the bread. Just because that is the way we like it. For the egg mixture I use one egg per two slices of bread. This depends on how big the eggs are and the thickness of the slices of bread. I add a dash of vanilla essence and whisk. I suppose that real vanilla would be better, but we are not foodies. I like things easy.

Melt butter in a non-stick pan and use a low heat setting. Too much heat gives you a crunchy golden outside, but soggy, yellow mush on the inside. Dunk the crust-less bread in the egg mixture and coat the bread liberally with the whisked egg and vanilla essence.

Fry the coated slices of bread until they are golden brown on both sides. This takes a while, because I do it over low heat. By this time my family has followed their noses to the kitchen and are standing around annoying me with: ” is it ready yet”?

Now for the icing on the cake, or the sugar and cinnamon on the french toast. Sprinkle your eggy bread with sugar and cinnamon. How much? Let your taste buds decide. This is how my kids love french toast. They say it reminds them of doughnuts.

This is such an easy way to give everyone a treat and I always have all the ingredients at hand. Enjoy!

Matilda xo