Blog | BHC School of Design | Cape Town

Styling for National Women’s Day

Atmosphere Furniture hosted our décor students’ styling composition in their double-story showroom in Woodstock. Providing our students with a peek into the industry as they decorate a dining room setting, along with either a desk or a bedroom.  The brief consisted of introducing learners to the equipment, materials, media, and techniques that are required to communicate each phase of the design process; from concept development to final client presentation. The styling of the settings was inspired and in celebration of National Women’s Day and executed in Atmosphere’s showroom on Friday, 7th August 2020. Students were allocated into groups of 2, competing for the Atmosphere Award, which included a gift from the store and a certificate to boost their prospective career.

Congratulations to the two students, Bianca Van Deventer and Jill Kreimeier who won the Atmosphere Award. Their approach to styling the dining room setting was to create a calming and beautiful space for hard-working businesswomen. The table was covered in delicious baked bread, palliative plants, and ruby red strawberries, to add some colour to the neutral tones. These were paired with brass ants, showing a fun, playful side to their design and creating a picnic feel.

We would like to thank Atmosphere Furniture for the warm welcome and hospitality during our visit and Marcia Margolius, for the encouraging words to our students.

We look forward to continue learning and collaborating with Atmosphere Furniture and their team of experts for many years to come.

FLATTEN THE CURVE | COVID-19

BHC School of Design is aware of the necessity to “flatten the curve” of the virus and we are being proactive by transitioning to online learning. We are taking as many precautionary measures as possible to prevent the continued spread of COVID-19. Our learning content has been adapted and we have imposed remote formal lessons between lecturers and students. The staff has set up group ‘webinars’ to assist in the learning process, and will endeavor to communicate with learners. BHC School of Design will continue to operate as best we can through E-Learning platforms and our Learner Management System (LMS). Communication is the single most important factor when working remotely. Together we will achieve the high level of education we still believe possible over this period.

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FYI’s and Tips for Remote Learning:

  • Ensure internet access at home
  • Set-up your dedicated workspace. Choose a quiet and private spot during lessons.
  • Familiarise yourself with platforms or apps before lessons or meetings start, i.e. Slack, Zoom, Google Hangouts, etc.
  • Lecturers will be available online from 09:00 – 15:00 Monday – Friday.
  • Group discussions with students will be arranged at certain days and times and will be communicated to students beforehand.
  • All ‘live’ events will be recorded and available to students who could not join.
  • Projects and assignments will be submitted online by uploading to the LMS System.
  • We are all going through the same change, share difficulties and ideas with each other.
  • We encourage all learners to collaborate and use this time productively.

 

We are trying our best to make remote learning as efficient, enjoyable and productive as possible.

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Sandcastle Challenge

We started the year enjoying the sea, sand and sun on Camps Bay Beach. The annual social day consisted of socialising with staff members and new classmates, building sandcastles and some friendly competition. Students were divided into groups and enthusiastic about creating their unique designs on the beach.

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It’s amazing to see what can be made from nothing more than beach sand and water – The design and décor students built remarkable creations, from the statue of liberty to a real-life mermaid feature.

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Prizes were awarded to the best sandcastle designs of the day. The first prize went to a group of students who created an exceptionally detailed ‘Octopus’ in the sand. The second prize went to the ‘Hanging Gardens of Babylon’ and third prize went to the ‘Statue of Liberty’.

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Well done to all participants and thank you to everyone who attended. We look forward to the next social day!

Design vs Decor

What is the difference between the 3 Year Diploma in Interior Design and 1 Year Higher Certificate in Interior Decorating?

Interior design concerns itself with more than just the visual or ambient enhancement of an interior space, it seeks to optimize and harmonize the uses to which the built environment will be put.

Interior decorators work with individuals and businesses to arrange and decorate stores, homes and offices using furniture, accessories, fixtures, colour schemes and artwork. It’s important to keep in mind that while interior decorators and interior designers are closely related, there are fundamental differences between the two.

The training and function of interior designers should not be confused with that of interior decorators. Whereas the decorators function usually begins once planning and building are completed, an interior designers function should ideally begin with the concept and continue through the planning and technical details to completion of the project.

 

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Application Process for Interior Design

Want to become an Interior Designer?

Let BHC School of Design help you craft your dream future in Interior Design. Why?

  • Our lecturers are all qualified assessors and are also active designers, architects and mentors; keeping learners abreast of new trends and technological developments
  • The school specializes exclusively in Interior Design Education
  • Use Virtual Reality and other cutting edge technologies
  • The campus is situated in beautiful Cape Town

 

BHC School of Design is a provider of design education, and currently offers a comprehensive three year full-time Diploma in Interior Design. This accredited programme has been designed in response to the needs of the design industry and is structured to integrate the latest industry developments into the delivery of the programme.

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How to apply?

1. SUBMIT AN APPLICATION FORM & DOCUMENTATION

Applicants who have a valid FETC (South African Grade 12 certificate) or international equivalent (verified by SAQA at NQF 4) will be considered.

National Students

APPLICATION FORM PROCESS:

To apply for the 3 year full time Interior Design Diploma programme you would need to complete and submit an Application Form. There are three ways to complete and submit an Application Form:

(1) The Application Form can either be received by clicking on this link Application Form and submitting the completed form via email to the Admissions Coordinator, Bianca Cordier, bianca@designschool.co.za OR requesting and submitting a form via email from the Admissions Coordinator.

(2) The Application Form can be submitted online by following the admission process steps for the 3 year full time Interior Design Diploma programme on our website by clicking on this link Online Application Submission

(3) Delivered / Couriered the Application Form to our campus at 72 Salt River Road, Woodstock, Cape Town.

DOCUMENTATION:

In order to continue your application we need the following supporting documentation from you. This documentation needs to be submitted with your application. This documentation can either be sent via return e-mail to the Admissions Coordinator, Bianca Cordier, bianca@designschool.co.za OR you may have it delivered / couriered or dropped off at our campus at 72 Salt River Road, Woodstock, Cape Town:

  • Certified copy of ID document (Identification page)
  • Certified copy of your Grade 12 certificate (or most recent statement of results if you are not yet in possession of your certificate)
  • Certified copies of academic transcripts and certificates of any additional qualifications (if applicable)
  • Proof of residential address

International Students

APPLICATION FORM PROCESS:

To apply for the 3 year full time Interior Design Diploma programme you would need to complete and submit an Application Form. There are three ways to complete and submit an Application Form:

(1) The Application Form can either be received by clicking on this link Application Form and submitting the completed form via email to the Admissions Coordinator, Bianca Cordier, bianca@designschool.co.za OR requesting and submitting a form via email from the Admissions Coordinator.

(2) The Application Form can be submitted online by following the admission process steps for the 3 year full time Interior Design Diploma course on our website by clicking on this link Online Application Submission

(3) Delivered / Couriered the Application Form with your Portfolio to our campus at 72 Salt River Road, Woodstock, Cape Town.

DOCUMENTATION:

In order to continue your application we need the following supporting documentation from you. This documentation needs to be submitted with your application. This documentation can either be sent via return e-mail to the Admissions Coordinator, Bianca Cordier, bianca@designschool.co.za OR you may have it delivered / couriered or dropped off at our campus at 72 Salt River Road, Woodstock, Cape Town:

  • Certified copy of passport with student visa. With your letter of conditional registration, you need to prepare your application for a study permit and submit to the Department of Home Affairs (www.dha.gov.za)
  • Certified copy of international equivalent international school leaver’s certificate verified by SAQA at NQF 4. Apply to SAQA (www.saqa.org.za) to have your international school leaver’s certificate evaluated.
  • Certified copies of academic transcripts and certificates of any additional qualifications (if applicable)
  • Proof of residential address in home country and in South Africa

 

2. SUBMIT A PORTFOLIO

Portfolio requirements for the 3 year full time Interior Design Diploma programme:

DRAWINGS:

Please draw the following 4 drawings on A3 paper. You may use any medium for this project. Should you have a portfolio that covers the criteria below, you may send it as an alternative. You will have to demonstrate the following skills:

  1. The ability to perceive depth from an interior perspective: Draw an interior perspective (3 dimensional drawing) of any room, e.g. Lounge, showing depth and shading.
  2. The ability to perceive depth from an exterior perspective: Draw an exterior of a two story or higher building, showing depth and shading.
  3. The ability to render: Draw a still life in colour.
  4. The ability to organise space through the use of scale and proportion: Draw a floor plan (top view) of any room or dwelling indicating windows, doors, walls, furniture and flooring.

QUESTIONNAIRE:

Please answer the following questions (typed answers):

  1. Name a South African interior you wish you had designed and give us a reason why you find it special. (Restaurant/ domestic/ office – your choice)
  2. Name your favourite international interior and give us a reason why you find it special. (Research in magazines or books)
  3. Which local or international designer do you admire? Explain why they impress you.
  4. Which three words would you use to describe yourself?
  5. Which three words would describe your design preferences:
  6. What three designed objects would you put in your own interior (money plays no role).
  7. What in your opinion is the difference between Interior Design and Interior Decorating?
  8. What type of products or interiors do you see yourself designing when you graduate?

On completion of your application portfolio you can submit through two ways:

(1) Copies of your application portfolio can be sent via email to the Admissions Coordinator, Bianca Cordier, bianca@designschool.co.za

(2) You may submit your original application portfolio by having it delivered or dropped off at our campus at 72 Salt River Road, Woodstock, Cape Town:

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Insta new Portfolio

Payment of registration is made after receiving an Acceptance Letter from the Admissions Coordinator.

 

Worried about the portfolio?

Don’t be! Come to our Sketching Workshop and let our lecturers assist you.

On the 23rd of November 2019 we will have a Sketching Workshop and you will have an opportunity to view the 3rd Year Graduates work and do an entrance portfolio.

 

REMEMBER OUR EARLY BIRD SPECIAL

Applications processed and registration fees paid by 31st of October 2019, will receive a 5% discount on your tuition fees.

We look forward to receiving the rest of you application and welcoming you to the BHC family!

Different procedures between (RPL) and Credit Accumulation and Transfer (CAT)

PROCEDURE

RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING (RPL)

Definition: The processes through which prior learning is recognised for the purpose of admissions or for credit towards a qualification.

Reasons to apply if you have achieved the following: Informal learning, formal unrecognised learning and vocational experience

Step 1 – Interview:

You will need to meet with the Registrar to discuss the requirements for successful RPL assessment.

The registrar will explain how the evidence should be gathered and presented and how to fill out the RPL Application Form.

If you are not available for an interview, you are welcome to discuss the RPL process further with our Admission Counsellor, Bianca Cordier by phone (021) 447 2788 or email bianca@designschool.co.za

Step 2 – Identification process:

You will need to submit a RPL application form inclusive of the relevant documentation and application fee.

Relevant Documentation:

SOUTH AFRICAN CITIZENS

The relevant documentation includes;

(a) Certified copy of ID document

(b) Matric Certification or SAQA Evaluated Qualification and

(c) Recognition of Relevant Informal Qualifications or Courses Achieved

(d) Detailed CV outlining previous places and years of employment, responsibilities and projects completed

(e) Proof of residential address

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

  • Certified copy of passport
  • Certified copy of study permit / other applicable permit
  • Certified copies of academic transcripts, certificates or diplomas of any additional qualifications (SAQA verified)
  • Detailed CV outlining previous places and years of employment, responsibilities and projects completed
  • Proof that you are financially able to pay your tuition fees and have adequate means of support
  • A written undertaking that you will return to your country of residence/ origin after completing your studies (study permit holders only)
  • Proof of accommodation for duration of studies

You will need to complete the relevant sections of the RPL assessment form and identify the modules that you would like to apply for RPL.

Step 3 – Portfolio Submission:

You will need to refer to the module details, found in Annexure A of the RPL assessment form, in order to ensure that you provide evidence that is relevant.

When you feel satisfied that you have fulfilled all the required criteria you may submit the portfolio to the Registrar, Sue Lunnon sue@designschool.co.za

Step 4 – Portfolio assessment:  

Your portfolio will be assessed by the Academic Head and moderated by the Academic Quality Committee. The assessment and moderation process may take up to 2 weeks to complete.

Step 5 – Additional information:              

Should your portfolio not demonstrate the required competencies, you will be given the opportunity to submit additional evidence and will be charged a re-assessment fee

Step 6 – Assessment Feedback:

You will receive a copy of the completed assessment form, stating the assessment feedback and outcomes.

Step 7 – Appeal Process:              

Should you wish to appeal the assessment decision you are required to follow the learner appeal procedure. Please visit our website to download the policy www.designschool.co.za

 

CREDIT ACCUMULATION AND TRANSFER (CAT)

Definition: Where credits awarded in other qualifications are recognised towards learning and certification of the qualification under consideration.

Reasons to apply if you have achieved the following: Formal registered accredited qualification

Step 1 – Interview:

You will need to meet with the Registrar to discuss the requirements for successful CAT assessment.

The registrar will explain how the evidence should be gathered and presented and how to fill out the CAT Application Form.

If you are not available for an interview, you are welcome to discuss the CAT process further with our Admission Counsellor, Bianca Cordier by phone (021) 447 2788 or email bianca@designschool.co.za

Step 2 – Identification process:

You will need to submit a CAT application form inclusive of the relevant documentation and application fee.

Relevant Documentation:

SOUTH AFRICAN CITIZENS

The relevant documentation includes:

  • Certified copy of ID document
  • Matric Certification or SAQA Evaluated Qualification
  • Accredited and Registered Qualification Certificate, Transcript of Results and Programme outline.
  • Proof of residential address

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

  • Certified copy of passport
  • Certified copy of study permit / other applicable permit
  • Certified copies of academic transcripts, certificates or diplomas of additional qualifications (SAQA verified)
  • Proof that you are financially able to pay your tuition fees and have adequate means of support
  • A written undertaking that you will return to your country of residence/ origin after completing your studies (study permit holders only)
  • Proof of accommodation for duration of studies

You will need to complete the relevant sections of the CAT assessment form and identify the modules that you would like to apply for CAT.

Step 3 – Portfolio Submission:  

If you wish to provide a portfolio of evidence you will need to refer to the module details, found in Annexure A of the CAT assessment form, in order to ensure that you provide evidence and qualification that is relevant.

When you feel satisfied that you have fulfilled all the required criteria you may submit the portfolio to the Registrar, Sue Lunnon sue@designschool.co.za

Step 4 – Portfolio assessment:  

Your prior qualification will be assessed by the Academic Head and moderated by the Academic Quality Committee. The assessment and moderation process may take up to 2 weeks to complete.

Step 5 – Additional information:              

Should your portfolio not demonstrate the required competencies, you will be given the opportunity to submit additional evidence and will be charged a re-assessment fee

Step 6 – Assessment Feedback:

You will receive a copy of the completed assessment form, stating the assessment feedback and outcomes.

Step 7 – Appeal Process:              

Should you wish to appeal the assessment decision you are required to follow the learner appeal procedure. Please visit our website to download the policy www.designschool.co.za

 

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WHAT TO EXPECT AT OUR OPEN DAY!

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By choosing to study at BHC Interior Design School you’ll enjoy the kind of supportive environment that will help you achieve your education dreams. Importantly our goal is to help gear you for a successful career in Interior Design or Interior Décor locally or in one of the design capitals of the world.

Our Open Days are on the following dates: 9 March 2019, 18 May 2019, 17 August 2019 and 14 September 2019.

We’d love for you to come. Bring your family, and/or friends. You’ll be able to spend time at the campus and meet some of your prospective lecturers.

Open Day Details:

Date: 9 March 2019 / 18 May 2019 / 17 August 2019 / 14 September 2019

Time: 10:00 – 12:00

Place: BHC School of Design, 72 Salt River Road Woodstock 7925

Open Day Schedule:

10:00 – 11:00 am – Welcome prospective students, tour of the college, viewing of current students work and meet our lecturers/staff

11:00 – 12:00 am – Justin, one of our lecturers will do a presentation about BHC, the application process and the Interior Design and Decorating Industry.

Afterwards, there is the opportunity to ask further questions. You will also receive Information Pack and Application Forms of the Course of interest.

Parking should be easier than during the week, as the businesses around us are closed on a Saturday.

On the 23rd of November 2019 we will have a Sketching Workshop which is similar to the Open Days however you will have an opportunity view the 3rd Year Graduates work and do an entrance portfolio.  This is for 2020 applicants.

If you would like to attend one of our Open Days or Sketching Workshop please RSVP by clicking on this link http://www.designschool.co.za/rsvp/

We look forward to meeting you!

I want to apply at BHC! What now?

So, you’ve decided that you want to expand your knowledge in Interior Design or Decorating. After all your research, you’ve made your decision…BHC School of Design is the one!

BHC School of Design

“What do I do now?” might be the first question that pops into your mind. Well, we have some good news for you…the process is actually quite easy:

STEP ONE (Application):

You have two options when it comes to starting your application. Either you can send our friendly admissions facilitator an e-mail (info@designschool.co.za) stating that you are interested in studying and she will get back to you with all of the requirements and necessary paperwork that needs to be completed. Alternatively, you can head over to our website (www.designschool.co.za) and click “APPLY HERE” button (the black circle on the right-hand side – you can’t miss it), and complete the 4 steps. Once completed and submitted, you will receive an e-mail, which brings us to the next step…

STEP TWO (Portfolio):

Yup, there is a portfolio involved, but this is merely to for us to determine your understanding of design & décor, and to identify the areas that we need to focus on once you start your classes at BHC.

The portfolio which you submit will differ depending on whether you apply for our three-year Interior Design course, or the one-year Interior Decorating course.

You are welcome to either drop off your A3 portfolio with our admissions facilitator (at the school), have it couriered to our campus, or simply scan it and e-mail it to us via info@designschool.co.za.

Should you deliver or courier, our address is as follows: 72 Salt River Circle, Woodstock, Cape Town, 7925

Portfolio Examples

STEP THREE (Portfolio Evaluation):

We aim to evaluate all portfolios within 7 days of receiving them. This means you should receive a response within a week from the day we receive your portfolio. Should we feel that some of the information is missing in your portfolio, or would like to see more of your work before making a decision, our admissions facilitator will contact you. We generally go as far as possible to ensure that new students are able to join the BHC family – so if there’s anything we would like you to work on or adjust before accepting your application, we will let you know!

STEP FOUR (Payment):

Once the application portfolio has been successfully evaluated, our admissions facilitator will send you an acceptance letter. At this stage, a payment of a non-refundable registration fee (R3500.00) will secure your spot in the class.

We are a private institution with small classes, which means you will get more personal attention as a student, but unfortunately, we do not receive any grants from the government. This means that our fees are generally higher than those of public institutions.

We do however have numerous payment options available to our students:

  • Early Settlement Discount: make your full payment before 31 January, and we’ll give you 5% off
  • 10 Payments: one payment per month from 1 February to 1 November
  • 4 Payments: one payment every two to three months, on the following dates: 1 February, 1 April, 1 July, and 1 September.

STEP FIVE:

Your application is successful, and you have paid your registration fee…All you need to do now is sit back and wait for us to send you your welcome pack, and to confirm your registration day! Congratulations on enrolling and being accepted to BHC – we hope to see you follow in the footsteps of so many amazing designers and decorators before you. You will be in good hands.

We often get asked about our institution, the application process and the courses we have to offer so here are a few FAQ’s that often pop up in our inboxes:

Do you offer any online courses?

Although our application process is online, all your tuition happens in a studio, with professional and attentive lecturers. We believe this is one of the reasons to study at BHC – hands-on tuition by qualified and relevant Designers, Technologists and Decorators.

What Courses do you offer?

We have two full-time courses and four short courses to offer. Our full-time Diploma in Interior Design is completed over 3 years, whilst our Higher Certificate in Interior Decorating is completed over 1 year.

Our short courses are completed in the evenings or on weekends over 3-12 weeks (depending on the course). Please head over to our website if you would like more information on any of these courses: https://www.designschool.co.za/courses-interior-design-decorating/

What type of qualification will I receive?

You will receive a Diploma (NQF level 6) upon completion of our Interior Design Programme and a Higher Certificate (NQF level 5) for our full-time Decorating Course. Our short course attendees receive a Certificate of Competence after a successful evaluation of competence.

Do you have any bursaries available?

Unfortunately not, but as an accredited & registered Higher Education provider, you can apply for a student loan at your bank of choice. Please note that we do offer an early bird discount of 5% on your fees (excluding registration fee) if you pay the registration fee before October of the year preceding your enrolment.

What are the requirements for enrolment?

If you have a South African passport, you will have to provide proof of a National Senior Certificate (NSC) with the correct endorsement. If you do not have an NSC, but are 23 years or older (and have industry experience) you can also enroll.

Should you not have a South African NCS or equivalent but do have a foreign qualification, you can submit your foreign qualification to the South African Qualifications Association (SAQA) and include your SAQA certificate as part of your application.

Students from other institutions are also welcome, as we can RPL or use the CAT system to transfer you into our 2nd or 3rd Year programme where applicable.

We have no subject requirements as our 1st Year and Décor courses are very comprehensive and we cover all of the fundamentals before we move on to the exciting projects.

Can International Students enrol?

Everyone is welcome! As mentioned above, their application process just takes a little longer as they would need to work via SAQA to have their qualifications verified.

Can I visit the campus?

Yes of course! You are welcome to attend one of our Open Days (keep an eye on our Social Pages for the dates) or alternatively, you can contact our admissions facilitator and she will arrange for a personal tour around the campus and introduce you to some of the students and staff.

When do applications close?

Applications close when classes reach maximum capacity, so hurry up to secure your spot!

That covers most of the regular questions! Please send an e-mail to info@designschool.co.za if there is anything else you would like to know. We are here to help and we are eager to have you join the family!

Please note that the college will be closed until the 14th of January 2019. This means portfolios can only be submitted via e-mail during this time and they will only be processed once we are back and in full swing. Classes start on 4th of February so there is still time to enrol!

BHC Alumni catch-up: Sameenah Ahmed

Not everyone is born with the guts or the raw ability to create and build their own business. Of those brave entrepreneurs – the ones leaping passionately into their dreams – only the downright determined succeed!

Sameenah Ahmed is one of these gritty individuals. Her passion for Interior Design (and a love for the property and building development industry, instilled by her family), has resulted in the successful Interior Design Company, SAS Interior Design, which she runs with her talented hubby and business partner, Sarfaraz Sablay.

The best part? Sameenah is a BHC Alumnus, and we couldn’t be more proud! There is nothing we love more than a student who’s gone through our ranks and come out on top. We were very privileged to have Sameenah come to our Open Day on the 29th September to talk to prospective students about her experience at BHC and the life she’s built on her career to date.  It was impressive, to say the least, and was so inspiring that we even had a few mums and dads wanting to switch careers.

Sameenah matriculated in 2007 and went on to begin her Interior Design career studying with BHC, graduating with top marks in 2010. We asked her why BHC was her institution of choice, (because let’s be fair, we all do our research before enrolling with the perfect fit), and this was her answer:

“I loved the environment, the facility and the works which were produced from past students. They’re well known in the industry for equipping their students with a broader understanding of design and the functioning of the way things work.”

And not to toot our own horn or anything (wink), we asked Sameenah what she felt she received at BHC that she wouldn’t have elsewhere:

“Practical, evidence-based design. Well-trained, practicing and equipped lecturers, who are passionate about interior design. Individuals who push your boundaries and open your mind to think more creatively. BHC has a consistently high standard of teaching methods and a reliable studio equipped with everything you need.”

After a stint working in the Interior Design industry for a well-known and respected company, Freeworld Design Centre, Sameenah began taking on smaller Interior Decorating jobs while starting her family. A few years later, SAS Interior Design was born out of a shared passion for the Design and Construction Industries. Together with their individual expertise, they have been able to offer ‘complete turn-key solutions’ and their company is thriving.

 
Sameenah & Family
SAS work

 

Thank you Sameenah, we are immensely proud of you and look forward to seeing your designs painted beautifully, not just all over Cape Town but the world!

P.S. We’d love to meet you on Instagram: follow us at @bhcdesignschool for epic visuals and BHC updates.