WOMEN were empowered in style at Kouga Municipality Women’s Month celebrations at the Cape St Francis Resort last week.The Kouga LED Market and Fashion Design Women’s Celebrations took place on Thursday and brought together about 100 women from across Kouga.The women, who are involved in clothing design and dress-making, discussed ways of penetrating the market to create thriving and sustainable businesses.The presentations were punctuated by a dazzling fashion show, with volunteer models from the municipality and community showing off some of the locally-made garments on the catwalk.The keynote speaker was the 28-year-old owner of Boer-e-Nooi Design Studio, Anmagreth van der Merwe, from Patensie, who shared with the audience her journey to becoming a young and successful business women.“The recipe for me was in finding out what drives me as a person and where I draw my inspiration from. These are my Afrikaans background and my firm reliance on Christian values,” said Van Der Merwe.“As a business woman I have made mistakes, and we need to understand that we will make a number of mistakes along the way. What matters is what lessons we draw from those mistakes and to avoid committing the same. Giving up is not an option,” she said.Local Economic Development (LED) Portfolio Councillor Bryan Dhludhlu, who could not be at the event due to a Council meeting taking place at the same time, said the focus of his department is on opening the market for small, medium and micro Enterprises to enjoy a bigger slice of the cake.“We have travelled a long way with some of these business entities and have seen them grow through the assistance from LED and our partners. We want to travel with them on their journey to success,” he said.Dhludhlu said it was exciting to see the increase in the number of women in the business sector stepping forward as key roleplayers in the development of society.