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Vending 101

I participated in my first community event a while back and I learnt a lot. Here are a few lessons. Lets learn from my experience.

1. Be prepared! I was a girl guide back in primary school in Kenya (equivalent to girl scouts) That was our Motto. I should have practiced setting up my display and figured out what works and what doesn’t and maximized my space before hand.

Today my daughter and I spent the day setting up the tent, table, jewelry display (recycled fire place screen) looks awesome and holds a lot of stuff! I now feel more confident. I got this!

2. Payment!

Make sure you can swipe credit and debit cards. I did not have my square on the day. A few people paid through PayPal. Have some change on you too. Be sure to accomodate all sorts of payments. Even payment apps. Stay upto date on the new money transfer methods.

3. Have some business cards that are colorful and hold attention. I had some diy cards (I’m thrifty) but everyone had nicer cards. I learnt I should do better.

4. A banner or poster.

Something, anything that attempts to explain what you do before you have to. I had some posters that my hubby made before I rebranded from Anne Drane Collection to Sawa Sawa Collection. Gotta do better!

5. Have no expectations!

It’s your first time! Take it easy on yourself. You are out there selling your brand. Relax, enjoy, have fun, learn. Talk to the experienced vendors. They gave me a lot of good pointers.

You are already doing awesome being out there chasing your dreams and meeting your goals. You can only grow from here. Keep on keeping on!

Thats it for now! The second event is coming up soon. Will let y’all know how it goes!

As always,

Anne Drane.

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Our first community event! ๐Ÿ˜

Today was my very first vending event! So exciting! Selling online is warm and cozy but going out to the community and introducing our worthy work to neighbors and other entrepreneurs is interesting and exciting.

It was Thursday, the event was previously meant to be last weekend but we got rained out. It seemed warm and nice out but quickly got very cold! Thank God we have our Maasai scarves, they kept me warm.

There wasn’t enough human traffic (It was very cold and a week day) but I made $20. Yay!

I learnt a lot today, great way to dive into vending. Will definitely file this day as part of the growth process and try again next weekend!

Thanks to the people at Texas Street Grill in Lakeway, TX for hosting the event and Lakeway Market days for organizing it.

See y’all next weekend at the Family Beer Company in Dripping Springs!

Any advice for this newbie? Comment below, send a DM on Facebook or Instagram.

As always,

Anne Drane.

Stay warm.

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Winnie Gladiatrix Sandal

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Following in our Gladiatrix series. We honor phenomenon Women in recent history that inspire the new generation of women. This week we honor Winnie Mandela. Sheย was a South African anti-apartheid activist and politician. She was also a wife and a mother, lovingly known as the mother of the nation. She was brave, bold and definitely extra ordinary.ย The Winnie Gladiatrix Sandal is black and white to symbolize her fight against apartheid. She inspires women across the globe fighting for human rights and a better way of life for humanity.

Any other women who deserve recognition? Write to us, comment below, follow us on Facebook and Instagram @sawasawausa. We would love to continue the conversation.

As always, I appreciate you stopping by.

Anne.

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The Claire Sandal.

Following in our Gladiatrix series. We honor Dr Claire Karekezi. She is the first and only female neurosurgeon in Rwanda. She escaped genocide as a child, trained in Toronto and chose to go back home and be of use to her people. That inspires me as a Kenyan in the diaspora. Time and time again I wonder if I will ever go back home. I want to raise my daughter in the land of the free and give her every opportunity to be something great. I also want to give back to my home country. My business does that – for now. There is always a pull between the land that gave you roots and the land that gave you wings. Doctor Claire is an inspiration to girls in Science and Medicine and to all women with big dreams. Thank you for making a path! Thank you for being brave, bold and fierce. Thank you for dreaming big then working to fulfil it. Thank you for being a role model. True Gladiatrix!

Anne Drane.

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Ellen Sirleaf Gladiatrix

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Sirleaf Gladiatrix Sandal

Our Gladiatrix series honors inspirational, bold and brave African women in recent history.

Our third inspiration of the series comes from the first female head of state in Africa. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was the president of Liberia and one of the few female heads of state in the world. She inspires young women who aspire to join the complex male dominated world of politics and Government. She is highly educated and achieved and rose above many challenges to become the president of liberia. She is still fighting for the rights of the West African nation. Read more on her Wikipedia here

We chose to honor her legacy with the blue sandal because Liberia has a beautiful coast.

We have honored Wangari Maathai, a nobel laureate environmentalist and Tecla Sang, an Olympic Champion.

We would like to hear more about women who inspire you. Let us know on our blog, Facebook or Instagram @sawasawausa

Regards,

Anne Drane.

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It’s Fall Y’all.Time for our Gladiator Sandal!

Sawa Sawa USA Fall Gladiator Sandal
Gladiator Sandal! Designed for the strong, bold woman. Now available in 4 colors.

Itโ€™s Fall! What are your plans this season?

Itโ€™s finally Fall in Texas which means we get a break from the scorching summer heat, yay. Itโ€™s time to take out some shorts and sandals and go outside. We have a wonderful selection of beautiful fall gladiator sandals. They come in 4 different colors. Handmade in Kenya of high-quality leather and a flexible rubber sole using an age-old tribal technique. They are decorated with Maasai beads hand stitched into leather in a gladiator design for our Gladiatrix Collection made for the strong, bold woman.

This fall, my number 1 list item is to finally go to the Hamilton pool preserve. It is about a 5-minute drive from my house but for some reason, we have never been to this gorgeous natural wonder despite living here for the last 3 years. I look forward to sharing the experience with my hubby and daughter. What is on your list this Fall? Any awesome places in Austin TX or Dripping Springs TX to visit with an overactive 19-month-old daughter?

As always, follow our blog, Facebook, Instagram @sawasawausa

Love to all, have a great season.

Anne Drane.

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Tecla Sang, A Golden Inspiration.

Tecla Sang Sandal

In an era where female success is quickly becoming about sex tapes, socialists and social media posts. We at Sawa Sawa USA and Zafarani Africa seek inspiration from African women that have broken the mold to live an extraordinary life that paves the way for like minded, bold, strong women to achieve their dreams.

Our Second inspiration in our Gladiatrix series comes from Tecla Sang. The first Kenyan female athlete to compete in Olympic Games in 1968. She paved the way for female athletes everywhere. She inspired women to run! Utilize their talents and be the best they can be. 50 years later, hundreds of medals later, Kenya is still the country to beat in long distance running.

We name our gold gladiator sandal after Tecla Sang for all the gold medals she has won in the Olympics, commonwealth games, all Africa games among many others.

It is true courage to go where no one has gone before and create a path for others to follow. Today, she teaches at Moi University. She is an inspiration and a gladiatrix. Thank you Tecla!

Our First Inspiration was Wangari Maathai.

For more, follow @sawasawausa

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Wangari Maathai. An inspiration for environmentalists everywhere!

Wangari Maathai was not only an amazing woman who fought tooth and nail to protect the environment. She was also a woman that inspired cultural and tribal women to aspire to more than what our male dominated culture offers us. She searched for a higher education, a higher purpose and a world outside of our own. She fought corruption and powerful men to protect the forests and the nature that depended on it. She believed in herself even when everyone else didn’t. She inspires the young ladies to know their self worth and fight for their place in this world.

We honor her, her achievements and her memory as the first in our Gladiatrix series. She was a bold, brave and strong woman.

She inspires young women and men all over the world that love nature and the environment and are willing to make great sacrifices to protect it.

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Discover intentional jewelry

Our summer addition to the jewelry collection is here!

Our business has always been mission based with a desire to make a difference in the everyday lives of our craftsmen in Kenya. Intentional shopping casts a vote at the world you would like to leave to the next generation. Our collection honors the Maasai women that create it.

These strappy leather and bead necklace pendants check all the boxes: cute, comfortable, unique and classic. Each piece is handcrafted and so versatile, they are easy to dress up for a date night or dress down for those days you are playing with the kids or grocery shopping!

Will be available on our website very soon: www.sawasawausa.com

Follow along on Instagram: @sawasawausa

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The kiondo

Coming soon to our collection is the hand woven sisal bag called the Kiondo. It was traditionally used by the women in Kenya to go to the market. Today, they have become a luxury and fashion item. Handmade from organic sisal fiber, they are eco friendly, biodegradable, humane, ethical and most of all, helps the women that craft them make a sustainable living. They are also high quality, beautiful and made to last a lifetime. The name kiondo which is from the Kikuyu tribe and the design were stolen and patented by the japanese after a visit to Kenya.

@sawasawausa working with Zafarani Afrika goes to the villages and works with the women to design a kiondo that is a perfect size and design for the modern woman. They are lined with cotton material on the inside and decorated with beads. Some have a zipper or fastened with clasps. However you like them, we can make them. I like the kiondo completely simple like they made them a thousand years ago with the sense of authenticity and originality intact ๐Ÿ™‚

They are also great items for interior decor and organising.

Here are some pictures from Kenya. Let us know how you like your kiondo on www.facebook.com/sawasawausa

www.instagram.com/sawasawausa

Our business aims to support more fair trade businesses and artisans in Kenya. ๐Ÿ’ž๐Ÿ‘œ

In the spirit of protecting our environment, ditch the plastic paper bags and adopt the kiondo!

The pictures were taken in the Kenyan markets displayed by the artisans who craft them.