The Bosisi Story
Moving to South Africa
After 20 years working in corporate America our family moved to Johannesburg, South Africa for a 2 year adventure! Living abroad is eye-opening no matter where you live and it is both humbling and inspiring. If you can experience a different culture it will enhance your life forever.
It enriched our family's lives in many ways.
Shweshwe Fabric - Gorgeous!
One thing that I became obsessed with was the gorgeous South African fabric called 'Shweshwe.' The colors are so vibrant and fun and there are so many patterns to choose from. I was feeling like a kid in a candy store! And what's so fascinating is that you will find shweshwe in so many different things. For example, shweshwe fabric is used in traditional South African clothing for women, men and kids too. Often times an entire family will be wearing the same color and pattern which is adorable. Shweshwe can also be made into shoes, headwear, bags, keychains, table wear, pillows and I'm sure there are many more products I can't even think of now.
I also saw a level of poverty that cannot be ignored. Women are often tasked with providing for not only themselves, but also their children, grandchildren and sometimes older family members as well. Women don't have as many opportunities to work, which inevitably prolongs the cycle of poverty to the next generation. Of course the Apartheid regime systematically prevented black South Africans from being able to be educated, find work and live in acceptable conditions. Even many laws were enacted to prevent blacks from decent wages and opportunities for work. Black women had even fewer opportunities and lower wages. Unfortunately it will take generations to transform the system and so women, and men, must try to support their extended families on meager wages, crowded and inadequate living conditions, lack of utilities such as electricity, running water and plumbing. To witness only some of these injustices broke my heart and fired-up my passion to do whatever I could to support the beautiful South African people.
Bosisi Designs is a woman-owned company with a mission is to give underserved women in South Africa an opportunity to work. Our goal is to employ women and help them to lift themselves out of poverty. Higher sales means we can employ more people. The more women we can hire the better their lives and the lives of their families will be. This is not a non-profit company, instead we want women to earn as much money as they can so they feel proud and can stand tall. Bosisi Designs bag purchases are purchases that give back to women who deserve a fair chance.
Stylish cute reusable shopping bags are everywhere these days but most of them tear easily or get dirty and you end up throwing them away. What I love about our handmade African print bags are their durability and strength to carry your heavy groceries over and over and over again without ripping. Machine washable and dryable our shopping bags will last your for years. Who doesn't need an oversized shopping bag? I know I do. The handles are strong and easy to carry. The stunning colors make our fashionable shopping bags the envy of boring cheap bags. Plus, by using reusable cloth bags you are doing your part to reduce single use plastics. And that is a fantastic achievement!
Handmade Leather Bags
Bosisi's handmade African bags are crafted with leather and shweshwe fabrics with care. It was so much fun to design the leather bags because we couldn't choose just one type of leather so there are two styles of leather bags with a pop of beautiful shweshwe fabric. A butter soft leather handbag that will make you look polished and stylish. And then there's a rugged leather handbag that makes you feel strong and ready to tackle anything that comes your way! Either way butter leather purse or rugged leather purse can make you happy.
When you need to travel (and don't we all WANT to travel these days!), a perfect leather duffle bag is in our store. The Weekender is a leather bag with shweshwe African print fabric that brings style and class. Oversized and roomy, this weekend bag can accommodate your needs. Done and dusted.
These stunners are all about the African fabric. Large toggle closure makes it easy to fit a laptop, snacks, water bottle, an extra sweater and more. Effortless and fun, the bag is easy to carry with adjustable straps.
Features on All of Our Bags
All of our handmade bags include an inside zip pocket for phone, wallet, lipstick and key clip for (yes) keys but you can also clip your frequent shopper tags and work badge for easy access. Fun and functional, that's what we love about our bags.
Thank you for visiting our site and we hope that you love our products and support the hardworking women of South Africa by purchasing a Bosisi bag!
We Empower Women One Bag at a Time.
In humble gratitude,