Fostering enduring legacies through unique fragrances

Clibb Boutique owner Bongeka Papu’s bespoke creations often bring a smile to her customers’ faces

Bongeka Papu, of Qonce, resigned from her job at a prominent financial institution to launch Clibb Boutique in 2020.
LEAP OF FAITH: Bongeka Papu, of Qonce, resigned from her job at a prominent financial institution to launch Clibb Boutique in 2020.

As a mother of four, 33-year-old Bongeka Papu was looking for more flexibility. In 2020, she took a leap of faith and started her own business.

And so she began Clibb Boutique — a small business with lots of heart.

“I started in June 2020 during the pandemic,” said Papu, who hails from Tsomo but lives in Qonce (formerly King William’s Town).

“I wanted to start my own enterprise so that I’d be able to balance my professional pursuits with the responsibilities of parenthood better.

“I was also driven by the aspiration to empower individuals in establishing their distinctive brands.

“So I made the decision to resign from my position at a prominent financial institution, a choice I have not regretted since.”

All about fragrances and branding, Clibb Boutique offers generic fragrances, car diffusers, personalised key holders, car ornaments and more.

“As a child, my initial exposure to fragrance was through my mother, an influence that instilled in me a deep appreciation for scent.

“However, it was in the aftermath of her passing in 2010 that my profound passion for fragrance truly ignited.

“Reflecting on memories of her through the familiar aroma of her perfume, I came to recognise fragrance not merely as smell, but as a conduit for meaningful experiences,” Papu said.

“At the heart of our mission at Clibb Boutique is a dedication to empowering individuals to establish their own brands, fostering enduring legacies through unique fragrances.”

Managing all the intricacies of manufacturing and brand development of different scented items and perfumes, the business operates from Papu’s home-based studio.

“We try to streamline the process so that businesses can integrate new fragrance products into their shops.

“We use premium ingredients such as essential oils and carrier bases, and for our key chains and diffusers we use materials such as epoxy, acrylics and glitters, to infuse each item with creativity.”

Drawing inspiration from nature, emotions, memories, cultural influences and even themes or concepts, Papu said different combinations of scents and ingredients were used to create the perfect products.

“We also do a lot of research, trend analysis, and collaboration with clients or colleagues to introduce unique and marketable fragrances.

“Inspiration is also drawn from different seasons and even times.”

Papu’s favourite Clibb Boutique creations are its customised offerings which are tailored to individual preferences.

“These bespoke items not only make our clients smile, but they’re also really fulfilling to make.

“I love creating the personalised fragrances bearing the client’s name on the bottle, making them ideal gifts for any occasion,” she said.

Papu said running a business always came with obstacles but the satisfaction of being self-employed outweighed all the hardships.

“Competition from larger corporate entities, constrained access to resources, increased shipping expenses and big operational expenses are just some of our challenges.

“Nevertheless, amid these challenges, the reward is bigger.”

Watching her business grow as a direct result of her efforts is extremely fulfilling.

“I find deep satisfaction in pursuing my passions and bringing my creative visions to life.

“I’m so grateful that I’ve been able to achieve personal and professional fulfilment through dedication, innovation and hard work.”

To find out more, visit Clibb Boutique on Facebook.



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