The Nairobian: Man, I love womens handbags
You cannot fail to notice Naphtali Osinda, the man who stitches women handbags under a tree near Central Park, not so far from General Post Office (GPO) in Nairobi city centre.
“Many people consider crocheting unmanly but these handbags bring me a lot of happiness,” the 58-year old told CityBiz.
Osinda has stitched his bags under a tree at ‘Barclays parking’ for three years now, crocheting, marketing and selling his handbags to earn a living.
“When I cleared high school, I came to the city and landed job at Coffee Board and at Kenya Bus as a conductor between 1987 and 2015,” he said.
“In early 2000, I decided to try my hand at roasting maize in Dandora but didn’t make enough money to feed my family.”
Osinda says he bagged the idea of good business from his sister who sells handbags and was encouraged by his wife.
“My sister gave me a handbag which I sold at Sh2000 then my wife convinced her to teach me the art of crocheting. One week later, I was ready for business.”
Osida began making and hawking his baskets in the city before settling at his current spot.
“My bags have a woollen lining, a secret compartment and are pickpocket-proof.
Since they come in unique designs, the bags retail for between Sh1800 and Sh2000 and can carry four outfits and function as a baby bag.
On a good day, Osinda can comfortably make two handbags and in a good week sell up to five bags.
“Some people laugh at me saying I’m doing what ought to be done by women but it has helped me educate my children.
“All of them have gone to school, in fact one of them is a teacher, and this job makes me happy,” he said.
“I’ve only taught some of my children to crochet. It pains me when I hear young men engaging in robbery yet they can engage in this kind of business.”
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