KZN’s top fashion designers in the pink for Fashion Week

2015-02-28 00:00

TWO top KwaZulu-Natal fashion designers are working around the clock to produce a collection that will wow fashionistas in Johannesburg at the SA Fashion Week (SAFW) from March 18 to 21.

Pietermaritzburg-born fashion designer Siyethemba Duma from “matte nolim” and Estcourt’s Thembeka Vilakazi from Yadah Exclusive Designs again proved to SA Fashion Week judges that they are the best that KZN can offer for the Lufthansa 1st Best Collection show to be held on day three of the event.

The two independent designers will be up against four other designers in their category, with one getting a plane ticket to Germany for the fashion experience of a ­lifetime, courtesy of Lufthansa German Airlines.

Duma said he spent over 300 hours working on his range and can’t wait to showcase it.

Duma and his “looks” will be on the catwalk of the SAFW ramp stage for the second time while ­Vilakazi will be making her fourth appearance.

He said he fell in love with ­fashion at a very young age.

After completing his fashion ­design qualification in the Durban University of Technology, Duma has not looked back. “My biggest challenge now is that my business is growing rapidly but there is a scarcity of skilled labour in ­Pietermaritzburg,” said Duma.

Durban-based designer Vilakazi said she’s working hard to open her fashion boutique after a good response from clients that has seen her work at local fashion shows and the Vodacom Durban July. She predicted that this year fashion enthusiasts can expect “bright colours and more of the 1950s style”.

Vilakazi started preparing for SAFW in December and thanked the KZN Fashion Council for ­giving them the platform.

Both independent designers were groomed by KZN Fashion Council under the “21 Steps to ­Retail”, a six-month mentorship programme.

Other top SA designers include Amanda Laird Cherry, Amos Tranque, Black Coffee and House of Ole in different categories of the shows.

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