Phumla has been beading for 19 years. She has 2 children, 1 son and 1 daughter. She loves being creative and coming up with new designs. When she isn’t beading she loves planting vegetables in her small garden.
Any stories of your upbringing? What was your upbringing like? I grew up staying with my grandparents. My mum was in Johannesburg working so it was very nice staying with them. They taught me how to look after the house and my grandmother taught me how to make Isikhakha- made of beads and worn by dancers.
What do you love about beading? I enjoy that we bead different things. Beading gives me an interest to have, and is the reason why my children and I can bond and be together which keeps them safe from dangerous things happening outside.
Monkeybiz is an economic upliftment project dedicated to reviving the traditional craft of African beadwork and empowering women to become financially independent. Since 2000 Monkeybiz has supported in the region of 300 bead artists to continue creating these unique artworks. All profits for the sale of artworks go back into the community where bead artists are provided with year-end bonuses and funeral cover for their immediate families.
The crowning achievement of Monkeybiz is that it recognises and develops the artistic ability of people who have never had the opportunity to express themselves through art. Monkeybiz provides a platform for beaders to become artists within their own right.