Chloe Townsend

Founder: Missibaba

Missibaba is the brainchild of leather accessories designer Chloe Townsend. In her Cape Town-based studio Townsend and her team produce carefully crafted high-end bags, belts, jewellery and, recently, men's shoes. In a bid to give back, Missibaba also includes a group of women from the iKhaya Trust Centre in Kayamandi outside Stellenbosch, who work on embellishing the leatherwork and manufacturing the jewellery, both of which have become synonymous with this cult label. A graduate of the London College of Fashion, Townsend has, in the space of six years, seen Missibaba stocked in stores around the country, as well as in Germany, the US and Portugal. And although her longstanding love affair with leather may not be every nature lover's cup of tea, she believes there are many different ways to be environmentally conscious. "Our aim is to create pieces that will last a lifetime and will not perpetuate the cycle of cheap disposable goods.� � Lynley Donnelly