Bagamoyo (where I lay down my heart), in East Africa,Tanzania is a remote historic town with relics of the past infused with realms of the future. There are many passers-by, essentially so, but those who have not come across #CreatePreneurAfrica Pili Mtonga's eyecatching 'fashion with a passion' base across the Bagamoyo art market, have missed out on the true creative essence of the art throbbing landmark of note!
PILI MTONGA +255 657 348 876
Pili Mtonga’s early beginnings of creativity initially began to launch when she was selected by SVETAN – a Swedish Tanzania Association Scholarship.
She then went on to the Gotland College of Arts study abroad program and the Royal art academy in Sweden. It was all about modern art, carvings, sculpture, and design. Back home in Tanzania, Arusha she joined an African American community center for children’s education programme at St Margaret’s primary school and trained in handicrafts.
Eventually, she became engaged in fashion design, handmade designs until the introduction of manual sewing machines opened up an exciting brand of uplifting possibilities of mass production and a team.
Visitors order an item they desire, and it is designed and created within a few hours! They leave with an authentic Bagamoyo masterpiece of crafted style!
Pili has triumphed in her zest for the creation and has become a soul healing ‘must see’ phenomena in Bagamoyo!
- Chairperson and Artist member Bagamoyo Sculpture Association
- Assistant teacher Bagamoyo Sculpture school
- Chairperson and Teacher Africa Modern Art in Bagamoyo
Meet #CreatePreneurAfrica – Pili Mtonga Bagamoyo (lay down your heart) at the essence of fashion
Tell us what drives you? What is your true passion in life?
What drives me….my family…and creating happiness…or should I sat satisfaction, when I see people in awe of seeing their visions become a reality.
How did you find your passion and how old were you?
I don’t know where to begin…if it’s about stating a year all age…I don’t remember when I was not passionate about creation…in so many forms.
What about your passion appeals to you the most?
What appeals to me, in my current line creating designs is seeing smiles. I just love giving people what they ask for…making dreams a reality.
What drove you to make money from your passion?
When you love what you do, you make sure your passion sustains you. Or you will spend all of life’s, precious moments in disarray and frustration…that causes all the chaos in today’s world. When people are forced to do what they have no desire for..because society and the economy preaches it as good choices.I chose to do what I love. And I make a living from it.
When was the first time you were paid for your passion?
I used to repair and ‘reinvent’ my worn out school uniforms…economically. it made better sense than getting a new supply. Others noticed and their parents gave me little rewards first for their kids and then gradually for them too!
What kept you going when you thought about giving up?
What kept me going is motivation. I knew a lot depended on me. I had to make it happen.
What motivates you every day to be even more successful?
Knowing the round world is abundant and my product has reached every corner of the world through tourist passers-by who always take treasures back home.
What do you have to say to all of the people who doubted you?
Keep doubting…I will keep doing. Little precious time left to pay attention to doubters.
What advice do you give to aspiring creatives who look up to you?
This is very important to me. I want to empower all around me. I usually give workshops and training to women and youth. Volunteers from abroad are keen to learn fashion style beyond commercial boundaries as well. There are so many possibilities and I know I sharing these skills will be a tool to uplift so many.
I see this as my purpose in life and my main aim is to get an efficient workshop space in order. I know once this is there, my heart….along with all who pass by will be filled with joy!