This study explores the role of design as a force that may stabilise cultural identity in a cultural climate of globalisation through the use of visual rhetoric and narrative. It focuses specifically on the heritage and face of a German culture in South Africa. Objects that are found amongst the South African German community are analysed in an attempt to uncover the rhetoric and narrative of the culture’s heritage in a country far removed from their Heimat. The study deals with terms such as Sehnsucht and belonging, of maintaining a sense of cultural difference while being integrated and socially accepted. It uses visual rhetoric as a means to discover elements that may be used by design in order to adequately represent the Germanness of the South African German community in a way that it can be maintained in today’s way of life.