By: Rochelle Cornelius
Miss Namibia 2nd Runner Up 2019 and SYM Female Model of the Year 2020, Johanna Swartbooi has expanded her horizons by trading her hand in fashion.
She has since introduced the ╪Nu/Gôa accessories, a fashion brand that focuses on unconventional designs.
The name ╪Nu/Gôa is of Namibian origin, from the Khoekhoegowab language spoken by the Nama/Damara and San communities.
The name translates to ‘Black Child’ in English (‡Nu – Black /Gôa – Child).
She said the accessories stem from repurposed and recycled materials including chains and hooks from old accessory pieces, as well as bottle caps.
Originating from Vaalgras in the /Karas Region, the young entrepreneurs’ skills stem from beading lessons taught by her grandmother.
“Learning the craft of stringing beads together to make jewellery at a tender age was what pushed me to create ╪Nu/Gôa accessories in February 2019”, said Swartbooi.
She added that the brand was created to educate the world about Namibian culture and languages.
“By introducing the brand to Namibia and the rest of the world, it intends to supply to high fashion and commercial markets”, Swartbooi explained.
She also provided ╪Nu/Gôa rental accessory pieces for music/fashion video shoots and photoshoots.
She has so far collaborated with the likes of Aubrey Styling on a campaign for Amina Magazine based in France.
Locally, ╪Nu/Gôa has provided pieces for an African Giant fashion shoot and an exhibition of The Tribe Namibia.
There are several projects currently at work that are yet to be disclosed.
To officially launch ╪Nu/Gôa accessories as a high fashion brand a NAMA COUTURE COLLECTION was created. This collection is inspired by the vibrant colours in the Nama traditional attire. It marks the beginning of celebrating Namibia’s rich culture in the modern world with an unconventional approach.
To make this dream become a reality ╪Nu/Gôa worked with an exceptional team. This includes a collaboration with Jay-Aeron, an award-winning make-up and creative consultant. The photographer was Jean-Claude Tjitamunisa the man behind Nazari Images and the official graphic designer for ╪Nu/Gôa.
Video visuals that are due for release towards the end of the year were engineered by Avid Marketing Agency.
NEW UNDER THE SUN: Johanna is ready to share more of her crafty skills off.