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Passion for fashion births Seriti handbag

09 Mar 2023

Setswana word Seriti denotes dignity and integrity, and so does the petite black signature leather handbag by Xandye Boutique.

The make and fine finishes ooze elegance and are bound to add a sophisticated and classy look to a woman’s outfit.

Established in 2020, Seriti handbag is a brainchild of a Motswana woman, Sandra Kenanao, who designs the product and sends it for manufacturing oversees.

Kenanao’s deep passion for fashion and entrepreneurship from a young age saw her pursue her dream three years ago when she sent her first product specifications to her manufacturers, but COVID-19 hit before she could receive the first sample for approval.

“I have always loved fashion, especially handbags and I wanted to come up with something which is portable and gives a sophisticated and classic finish to an outfit. I sent the first design in 2020 and due to COVID-19, the sample took too long to arrive owing to logistical issues,” Kenanao said in a recent interview.

After several attempts to nail the specifications, the genuine leather Seriti handbag finally hit Botswana market, through the Xandye’s Online Boutique.

Even though Kenanao had ditched her job as a financial advisor in the corporate world, the Bcom Accounting and Retail Management graduate had confidence that her passion coupled with perseverance would fulfil her dream.

She ensured that the structure and the finishes of the bag were durable for it to be competitive in the international market.

“This bag best describes us as Batswana because we are known for cattle rearing and the leather is from these cattle.  At the same time I make sure that the finishes are durable to maintain the classiness of the product,” she explains.

However, she regretted that she was yet to find leather processors locally who could be capable of producing the same finished product with her preferred specifications.

Her wish was to finally see her products fully manufactured in Botswana, thereby creating more employment.

Even though Seriti handbag is the business signature product, the Thobo cardholder and Lefika wallet for men also form part of the Xandye Boutique.

Due to the limited editions, the Lefika wallet has since been sold out.

“We only make 100 products per item and after that we don’t do more. Due to high demand, the Lefika wallet has been sold out,” she says.

The self-funded creative director says even though she had managed to stay afloat despite the movement restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, she still needed to grow the business by incorporating other products and opening up to the international market.

She said additional funding would assist in mass production to ensure products are readily available to a wider market.

“At the moment, accessing financial assistance is a stumbling block because my products are not manufacture locally, but rather I design, choose finished and send outside the country for manufacturing. But I wish the creative industry could be recognised as a contributor to the country’s economy.” ENDS

Source : BOPA

Author : Kehumile Moekejo

Location : JWANENG

Event : Interview

Date : 09 Mar 2023