Takes years to tailor to clients

2017-10-03 06:05
Mogamat Talip from London Street in Salt River says he was born to be a tailor.PHOTO: Nomzamo Yuku

Mogamat Talip from London Street in Salt River says he was born to be a tailor.PHOTO: Nomzamo Yuku

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You can call his place in Salt River a home, a shop or an academy, but Mogamat Talip says for him it is a place of happiness.

He says to have everything under one roof all at once makes his life feel fulfilled. He runs his tailor business from the front of his house and he also trains students interested in becoming tailors.

He says he was born into a family that survived on income made from tailoring and he was taught from the age of 12 to use his hands and work with different people to develop his skills, which he is now happy to share with youngsters.

The married father of three says being a tailor might seem like an easy way to make money fast, but it actually requires a lot of skill and dedication to make it in the field.

“Being a tailor is a profession that cannot just be achieved through studying and understanding theory. It is basically 5% theory and 95% practical that takes years to master. It is a combination of skills from needlework, machine work, ironing, pattern design, cutting and garment making. You can never be a successful tailor until you have mastered all of these and you are happy with the product that makes a client happy. It takes years and patience.”

He says over the years of running the business, he started receiving requests from tertiary-level students who needed to gain experience, whom, he says, he is proud to have empowered and inspired through his work.

“Some have now made names for themselves as tailors, fashion designers and businesspeople. Though it started as a family business, I am happy it has made an impact on the lives of other people and that the community has shown its support over the years.”

Talip designs suits, does all sorts of alterations and employs unskilled youth to work at the shop for a period of time and gain a skill to go find a job.

“It makes me happy to see those children making something out of the little that I have shared with them,” says Talip.

He encourages young people who would like to become tailors to not put their heart on making money but rather to be willing to learn, work hard and have love for what they do. He quotes the saying “Good things comes to those who wait”, and says it is the best way to become a successful tailor.

One of his students, Daniel Botha from Wesbank, says he has worked with Talip for many years and has learned a lot from him.

Botha says he also has a passion for what he does and would like to also start his business using the skills he has learned from Talip.

“I have been here for years, because you cannot just start today and know everything; it takes years,” says Botha.

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