As part of Bellyssimo’s new African-inspired maternity range ShweshweChic, the brand now offers Shoe Makeovers in Durban. 

Let us bring back to life your favourite shoes, by revamping them in a variety of stylish Shweshwe fabrics. No matter what state you find your best worn pumps, takkies, stiletto's or boots in, scrunched at the back of your cupboard, we will work our magic and transform them into ShweshweChic Originals! No shoe is too difficult for our team to re-invent, starting from R350 onwards (drop off and collection not included).  

Interested? Email a photo of your 'tired' old favourites and the colour palette you'd like to match to orders@bellyssimo.co.za, and ShweshweChic will send you fabric swatch options and a quote for your unique shoe makeover.

In the meantime, read the personal story of designer and CEO, Aldine Dallas on how her passion for Shweshwe and Shoe-Makeovers started…

...Every year when Heritage Day came around, I’d always feel saddened by the fact that not the whole of South Africa dressed up in Celebration of our African Heritage.  I’m a third generation native originally from Jozi and during my nine years in KZN I’ve marveled at the beautiful Zulu attire that most of the local ladies ‘don with pride’ annually on the 24th of September.

I’ve always felt boring and ‘left out’ but without a workable solution of ‘what to do’. During June this 2016 I went on a Durban tour and whilst inside the Victorian Market, I fell in love with a pair of Shweshwe covered platform shoes that I simply ‘had to have’.

They were R500 and I needed to draw cash in order to purchase them.  Long story short, I didn’t make it back to the shop in the ensuing weeks and couldn’t justify spending that amount of money on a pair of shoes I didn’t really 'need'. I decided to rather spoil myself six months down the line at Christmas time and subsequently put the idea out of my head.

But the image of those shoes would not leave my mind, my imagination going wild with possibilities of ‘what I could do if I covered my own shoes’.  I found myself digging in the back of my cupboard and pulled out twenty-six pairs of old shoes that were either dirty, scuffed, peeling or simply too old to wear. 

Not many women have close to that number of shoes during their entire lifetime but shoes have always been a passion of mine and they were to become what surfing is to a surfer; “I can never get enough of them!”

As I looked at the ‘Before’ shoes I could immediately visualise the ‘Afters’!

In fact with a pile of takkies, pumps, stilettos and ankle boots in front of me, a dream of “All Durban women wearing ShweshweChic shoes by Heritage Day 2017" unfolded.  I only had fifteen months in which to activate my idea, starting with my very own collection that I would commit to parade in my daily routine as a ‘Walking Advertisement’.

I set in motion: Fabric shopping, an artisan search hoping to empower up-and-coming entrepreneurs and a ‘briefing template’ in order to communicate what I envisaged in my mind to the team I would begin to work with.

Within two weeks I had ten of my shoes ‘Revamped’ and Launched them onto Social Media, showcasing the ‘BEFORES and AFTERS’ for the Brand #ShweshweChic with the payoff line "#ShoesComeFirst - Revamp your wardrobe from the bottom up".

 

Friends and family came out in support, excited for me but also extremely keen to reinvent and ‘MAKEOVER’ some of their old dancing shoes, expired heels, work pumps, kick-around takkies or tired anklets into unique One-of-a-Kind Footwear. 

One of my first orders was a pair of bridal peep-toes that were too beautiful not to cherish and make good use of.  We pulled off all the diamantes and produced Classic ShweshweChic navy and gold-fleck showstoppers.

I loved them so much that I instantly revamped a pair of my most loved sandals as well as some retired lace-ups.  A friend then asked for her brown sandals to feature some of the print as well and transformed them into unique fashion statements. 

I started wearing my shoes every day and realised a ShweshweChic clothing range was missing! I had gained a lot of weight due to illness and didn't want to dress in a boring manner to try and 'cover up' my curves. So before I knew it the ShwesheChic Proudly Curvy Fashion Range was born and it made perfect sense to align with Bellyssimo Maternity Wear, as so many women still struggle with their weight after giving birth.

I now wear my ShweshweChic Brand every day to work and socially and when I attended an Umabo' a Zulu Cultural Welcoming Ceremony in November 2016, I wore my very own wardrobe without having to buy or loan a single item which was pure bliss.

Clients allow me to be adventurous and often my ‘Fabric and Lace Colour Options’ for takkies create unique shoes with fabric placed differently left-to-right, or toe-to-heel, creating completely unique 'One of a Kinds'! 

My ultimate dream is that by the 24th September 2017, ShweshweChic becomes a household name and that every woman aspires to have at least ONE PAIR of her besties refurbished if not five or ten… covering all bases from sport to casual to work to smart to elegant!     

A NEW Range of ShweshweChic Pumps are being launched in May 2017, so look out for these magnificent African and Shweshwe fabric shoes, made with 'sore swelling feet in mind!' They will feel like slippers, fitting so comfortably that you will glide through the day; because we know that ladies carrying excess or pregnancy weight need extra comfort!

Orders can be made up with reasonable lead times and a complimentary storage and travel Shoe Bag is custom-made as a gift, provided with your special Shoe-Care Instructions. 

ShweshweChic’s ultimate Vision is to establish a factory in which staff can be empowered to learn the trade of making, revamping and repairing Shoes, with R10 from each pair sold going towards ShweshweChic's 'Walking Proud' fund, to ensure no South African goes barefoot unless they choose to.