Inga Gubeka founded Indalo Decor in 2013 and works mainly from a studio in Paarden Eiland, Cape Town. Indalo Decor produces a variety of products, from backpacks, purses, clutches and phone accessories to décor items such as clocks and lighting solutions. What started out as an interior design company soon morphed into a fashion-meets-décor hybrid. The distinctive wooden products have become the envy of stylistas the world over, including South African supermodel Candice Swanepoel.
Gubeka wanted to move into the fashion industry by producing pieces that aren’t readily available. He wanted to create unique items that would appeal to consumers used to a saturated market, and add something that cannot be bought anywhere else.
“Indalo” means “nature” in Zulu and, to stay true to the brand name, all items are manufactured using wood and leather. His designs can essentially be considered wearable pieces of art, instead of just another bag used to hold everyday items.
Gubeka is known for his trademark wooden products but, aside for being an amazing designer, he is also one of the most well-regarded entrepreneurs in South Africa. In 2016 he was one of only five South Africans to make the Forbes 30 Under 30 list.
However, that’s not his only major achievement – Glenfiddich decided to name an R80,000 (£4635) bottle of whiskey after the young entrepreneur. At age 28 he was the youngest South African ever to have a whiskey named after them.