Eight kings and queens of local fashion will soon be showcasing their show stopping collections, each reflecting the theme of Africa’s greatest horseracing event “‘Leader of the Pack”, at the one of the biggest events on the fashion calendar, the Vodacom Durban July Invited Designer Showcase, presented by Durban Fashion Fair.
Durban Invited Designers Karen Monk Klijnstra, Kathrin Kidger, Zama Mathe, Francois Vedemme, Hanrie Lues with Paledi Segapo and Shaldon Kopman from Johannesburg and Tamara Chèrie Dyson from Cape Town will all be part of the Vodacom Durban July Fashion Experience Shows on 13, 15 and 17 June.
“This year’s showcase offers an exceptional line-up filled with very talented and strong individual designers,” explains Tiffany Prior, Fashion Programme Director of the Vodacom Durban July. “The Vodacom Durban July Invited Designer Showcase is a very well run event with a rich history and we’re very respectful to the talents that we present, which means that those who have participated in the past all enjoy the experience and often return to the showcase year after year.”
Two such designers are Durban favourites, Karen Monk Klijnstra and Kathrin Kidger, who are always excited to be involved with the fashion extravaganza. Kathrin was part of the fashion competitions prior to finishing her qualification and loves, “Seeing the event from all angles of the fashion realm as it makes the invite to showcase even more special.”
Karen’s race day ensembles always bring an element of surprise and this year she promises the same, “High octane, adrenalin pumping, edgy fashion!”
Invited Designers Tamara Chèrie Dyson and Hanrie Lues have also been involved with the pre-raceday fashion competitions as emerging designers and so hold the Vodacom Durban July close to their hearts.
“This event is really where it all started for me five years ago,” remembers Tamara Chèrie Dyson. “I was a second year fashion design student and I won the Vodacom Durban July Young Designers Award in 2011 which opened up many doors and ignited my desire to own my own designer brand.”
For bridal designer Hanrie, “Being involved with this event for 11 years has been such an incredible journey. To say I am excited to showcase as an Invited Designer would be a huge understatement!”
Established Durban designer Zama Mathe cannot wait to showcase her talent and ideas from her label, Zarth Designs, as she believes the showcase is an essential platform for gaining exposure in the industry: “The Vodacom Durban July inspires me as a designer to be creative, experimental and innovative in designing my ‘collection’ and allows me the creative freedom to artistically direct a piece of art.”
Creativity is also one of the reasons why Francois Vedemme loves the unique event: “It’s always a unique experience because of all the creativity that is involved.”
Menswear designer, Shaldon Kopman, of the label Naked Ape, is excited to be returning to the fashion stage, as it’s an, “Awesome platform to showcase our unique African inspired style.”
The Invited Designer Showcase is an invaluable opportunity for all designers, something accomplished designer, Paledi Segapo, truly understands: “The Vodacom Durban July continues to be a fabulous game changer. If you’re an established designer you’re not the real deal until you’re associated with this prestigious horse race competition meets fashion.”
Bookings for the three pre-raceday Vodacom Durban July Fashion Experience Shows on 13, 15 and 17 June are now open. Bookings can be made by calling Thobeka on (031) 314 1645 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org