A vibrant woman who handcrafts equally striking embroidery
How striking is this navy, turquoise and wine cushion cover with fish design, embroidered by Lonia Ngobeni, our featured embroiderer for November?
Just as striking and vibrant as Lonia herself, seen here in traditional VaTsonga dress, with her beautiful 3 year old daughter completing the picture.
Lonia also has a 6 year old boy, wisely named Success, and is married to Oupa Mathebula, who is employed as a security guard in the town of Tzaneen, 40 km away.
The Kaross embroiderers work from home, in many small villages scattered in a 25km radius from the Kaross studio, which itself is based on a citrus farm on the Letaba river, east of Tzaneen. Lonia and her family live in a village with the unusual name of Joppie.
Lonia has been working for Kaross since 2008, and has made a name for herself as one of our top embroiderers in this time.Lonia uses her embroidery skills to provide a better life for her children
Whereas Lonia’s schooling ended with a matric certificate, her dream for her children is that they will go further and do more, that her income from Kaross will help her children to complete school and obtain a tertiary education that will make them successful and self-sufficient in their work and lives.
So many times we take access to education for granted, but financially and in so many other ways it is an enormous struggle for rural families in Africa to get access to quality education, good work opportunities and to better their economic circumstances.
We at Kaross honour Lonia, as a mother who uses all her skills and creativity, and who is faithful with what she has, in order to provide a better life for her children and for the generations that will follow.
Images of recent embroidered artworks by Lonia: