Finding the right smartphone case can be a bit of a mission, and settling on a design can be even tougher. But what if we told you that you no longer have to settle for a smartphone case that you only sort-of-maybe like?

TheKase, a smartphone case concept store, recently opened its doors in South Africa. It offers – surprise! – smartphone cases and related accessories, but with a twist: customers can print their own smartphone case designs in the shop, while they wait.

The store also has a South African website – it goes live in ten days’ time – but ordering online doesn’t hold the same appeal as the organic process of going from ordering to collection in the space of just seven minutes.

You can either choose from a gallery of professional designs the store presents to you, or pick a photo that’s already on your phone. Once you have the image ready, it will be loaded onto TheKase’s servers, and printed on a blank cover whose colour you’ve also selected, for the phone of your choosing. The store carries cases for most popular smartphone brands, too.

TheKase has thousands of other designs for you to choose from.

The concept first started in France back in 2012, and has since expanded to 140 stores in Europe, USA and Asia, India and soon Australia.

TheKase’s motto is “I am Unik”, a summary of the concept behind the in-store printing. It allows you to walk away with a smartphone cover that absolutely nobody else in the world has, especially if the image used is one you created yourself.

“This is the start of an exciting new era for South Africa’s fashion-aware device users. TheKase, the world-over, has succeeded democratising contemporary art by enabling people to install it in their daily lives. TheKase has turned the mobile accessory into a fashion fetish. Now it is South Africa’s turn to feed that fetish,” said Steve Rosenblum at TheKase, in a press statement.

Should you not be particularly creative, TheKase has a huge variety of pre-made designs to choose from. In fact, the collection is absolutely massive, sporting designs from hundreds of talented artists from around the world. It’s so expansive, there are sections that cover all things geek-related as well as popular TV shows like Doctor Who and The Walking Dead.

TheKase’s first South African store opened in Rosebank Mall back in January, and to print a smartphone cover from scratch will cost R350.

Charlie started his professional life as a motoring journalist for a community newspaper in Mpumalanga, Charlie explored different journalistic angles since his entry into the fast-paced world of publishing in 2006. While fostering a passion for the arts, Charlie developed a love for technology – both which allowed him to serve as Entertainment and Technology Editor for an online publication. Charlie has since been heavily involved in consumer technology for various websites and publications. He thoroughly enjoys World War II films and cerebral documentaries; aviation; photography and indie music. Oh yes, and he also has a rather strange obsession with collecting coffee mugs from his travels.