Philippa arrived in Eswatini from the United Kingdom in 2001 after graduating from Central St. Martins College of Art and Design, and began work as a design intern at Gone Rural. Philippa Thorne is creative director for Gone Rural, a non-profit organization that supports both artisans and their communities through health, education and empowerment programs.
Sapna has over 15 years of experience within the luxury accessories industry, designing for Coach, Calvin Klein, as well as launching the handbag collections for Rag & Bone, Eddie Borgo and most recently Rosetta Getty. Her expertise ranges from design and development to production and sustainable sourcing, as well as building brand and sales strategy. In 2014, Sapna shifted directions towards artisan development through Nest’s professional fellowship program and co-founded Khokho, an artisan social enterprise in Eswatini, working with women weavers from rural communities. She has leveraged her industry experience to help build capacity and impact for artisans around the world, including partnering with UNHCR in Kakuma Refugee Camp.
Zinhle Vilakati is the skilled artisan professional and master weaver, behind the iconic brand Khokho. Together with Thorne and Shah, Vilakati shares a unique vision to advance the ancient technique of Swazi weaving — a special skill passed down from female elders to the younger generations.