Passion and enthusiasm are ingredients for success! – Justine Engelbrecht, Executive Director at Tweak Fashion

Passion and enthusiasm are ingredients for success! - Justine Engelbrecht, Executive Director at Tweak Fashion

Written by Staff Writer

Oct 19, 2021

By Charndré Emma Kippie

 

Justine Engelbrecht is currently the Executive Director of a local NPC known as Tweak Fashion (Pty) Ltd. Tweak Fashion is a textile repurposing company that  takes existing fabric and clothing, and uses it to train and empower entrepreneurs, to recreate and repurpose it into sellable fashion and accessory items under the Tweak Fashion label. Tweak Fashion supports entrepreneurship, while reducing textile waste on our landfill sites, thereby promoting sustainability. 

Justine is also the Director and Creative Coach at CreativeU (Pty) Ltd. CreativeU offers face to face or online Creative Coaching, as well as Courses via email. The platform assists users with finding their true identity and self worth while recovering, or discovering their creativity.

 

What got you into the field you’re currently in?

This is an interesting question. After five years of being in travel and publishing, fashion was not on my mind, however as a Creative Coach I have a heart for helping women to find their identity and realise their gifts so that they can be the very best version of themselves. The creation of Tweak Fashion was a natural progression, and has provided the way for me to gather an amazing team of like-minded Directors who are all passionate about helping and building up women in South Africa. Collectively we are able to provide opportunities for women to learn skills and earn money to provide for their families, while at the same time educating them about sustainable fashion.      

 

What excites you the most about your role? 

We started Tweak Fashion on the 2nd June this year, and the last two months have been both exciting, and challenging. Even with the Covid-19 challenges we have had to face, each and every member of the Tweak Team has been incredible, rising to the occasion and working hard, and I am immensely proud of everything we have achieved so far, the ladies are both creative and innovative, and they continue to amaze me.   

 

In what ways do you think your organisation/business is enhancing the South African economy?

The only solution to the unemployment problem in South Africa is entrepreneurship, and a willingness for people to get behind small businesses. We need to support the SMEs and the Start Up’s, and we need to build our economy one person at a time – if need be. Women and children are our future, we need to help mothers put food on the table, one-income households are a thing of the past, and there are many women who are alone and struggling as the only breadwinner. 

Tweak has two single ladies that have been unemployed for a few years, two single mothers, and a young budding entrepreneur who was battling to make ends meet. For us this is just the beginning, and as these ladies become fully established, we are hoping to bring new ladies into the fold.  

 

Do you think your field is diverse in terms of gender equality? 

Tweak fashion is an equal opportunity PBO, we believe in equal opportunity for all.   

 

What are your top 3 tips for ensuring the success of women in your field?
  • The two main ingredients for success are passion and enthusiasm, everything else can be taught.
  • Love what you do, and Love who you are, and choose kindness – these things along with passion and enthusiasm are contagious.
  • Life is all about Attitude, you choose how you strive – Choose excellence in all that you do. I love this quote “Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence” Vince Lombardi

     

What have been some major obstacles in your career, as a woman, and how did you overcome them?

Sometimes our biggest obstacles are ourselves and how we let things and others affect our self-worth and therefore our opportunities. Standing tall, and facing our fears, is a very big step in ensuring success. Making a decision to say Yes – when opportunity knocks and No – when it is necessary.

 

What are your goals for the future?

We have a large vision for Tweak Fashion, and that is exciting, implementing that vision, and creating a new sustainable fashion brand, while continuing to coach women, to find their identity through creativity, is a large part of my dream. 

We are also implementing the ‘Mumpy’ project which is for children in South Africa – sending a message of hope and love – this is necessary. People are becoming more and more desperate – even if we help one person, we must believe we have done much!  

  

What important/life-changing books have you read? 

I love stories, and we all have one, nobody snaps their fingers and achieves success, and in this vein, we also need to consider how we measure our own success. Richard Branson & Elon Musk have great advice, tips and inspiration. Snippets can be snapped up from their books and videos. End of Average by Todd Rose, Spencer Johnson’s Who Moved my cheese – there are many more. 

I am completing my Honours in Theory of Literature, so I love the female greats – Jane Austen, Emily Bronte, Virginia Woolf, Margaret Attwood – there are little pearls that can be gathered from between the pages. The Bible is a daily go to – there are verses that resonate, and remind me that our creativity comes from God.       

 
What advice do you have for young women entrepreneurs who aspire to work in  your field? 

Do not discredit or brush away your ideas, visions and dreams. I am a visionary, but I needed to find other people who would believe in my idea, before I could implement it. Share your ideas with others, believe that the things that stir in your heart are there for a reason, and act upon it – we need to take large steps of faith to make a difference.    

 

 

*For more, check out our bumper 16th edition of the Standard Bank Top Women Leaders publication on Issuu – Digital Publishing Platform – here

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