Fashion Frequently Asked Questions

VDJFELogo600How are the Invited Designers selected?
We invite 8 designers who have established businesses or brands. Preferably, they must have shown on other major events such as SA Fashion Week, Jhb Fashion Week, CT Fashion Week etc. This is not a platform for designers who want to launch themselves or a brand, it is for those with a good fashion history, established studios and where possible, retail outlets. An established national, media profile is very important. The above criteria must be current. We invite 2 designers from Johannesburg and 6 from Durban, in an effort to give as many Durban designers the opportunity to show, we never show a Durban designer in 2 consecutive years. Please bear in mind, this also does not mean that you will automatically be invited to show every second year!

If I’m an established designer, how can I put myself forward for consideration?
Email the Fashion Programme Director your bio and a media kit at .

When are the Invited Designers confirmed?
Usually by the end of March, a final list will appear on our official Face Book page and on this website.

What is required from an Invited Designer and do they compete?
They are required to design a range of 3 looks – a showstopper and a raceday ensemble for a man and a woman, specifically to the theme. The range may only be shown first at the Vodacom Durban July Showcase and on raceday. Invited Designers do not compete.

What is the Vodacom Durban July Fashion Challenge, who can enter and how does one enter?
It is a pre raceday fashion competition open to any aspiring or established designer who is not currently studying fashion in KZN. It is open to all design students, aspiring and established designers outside of KZN. If you are interested you will be required to submit a storyboard entry with your themed, raceday design.

What is the Vodacom Durban July Young Designer Award, who can enter and how does one enter?
It is a pre raceday fashion competition open to final year fashion students, studying with accredited colleges or universities. You may only enter through your college or university and will be required to design and make a themed, raceday ensemble for judging purposes. If you are interested in entering, please ask your lecturer or HOD to contact .

What is the judging criteria for all the fashion competitions, include the raceday on track competitions?
We ask judges to look at the following:
• Does the design encompasses the spirit of the Vodacom Durban July and raceday?
• Is the design interesting, clever, fashion forward and theme driven?
• Fit, finish, quality?
• Has the outfit been styled properly?
• Does the design have a visual impact?
• Does the designer show obvious design talent?
• Attention to detail?
• Has the designer been clever in the interpretation of the theme and brief?
Has the designer selected the correct fabric, trim etc to work with?
Deliberation between judges also plays a role in selecting finalists and winners.

Who judges the fashion competitions, how are judges selected?
Judges are selected based on their knowledge of fashion and the event. They are very often designers, fashion journalists, fashion lecturers, fashion producers and celebrities who are considered stylish and fashionable. There are always 5 judges on each judging panel to ensure that a clear winner is always found. Please bear in mind that the judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be enter into regards winners.

Where are the fashion events held, can anyone attend?
All pre raceday fashion events are held in the Champions Room at Greyville Race Course. Find out more here.

What is the Vodacom Durban July Fashion Experience?
It is a show that features 30 Young Designer Award semi finalists, where the 10 finalist are selected. It also features the work of 5 well known guest designers.

What is the Vodacom Durban July Showcase?
It is a show that feature the 10 Young Designer Award finalists, the 10 national Fashion Challenge finalists and the 8 Invited Designers.

Are models provided for all the fashion competitions?
Models are provided for the Vodacom Designer Showcase and raceday. Should you wish to enter the on-track fashion competitions, you will need to provide your own model. However, models are not taken into consideration when we select our winners.

If I want to model in any of the shows, how do I go about it?
The event will only work with established model agencies, who are given a written brief and have to submit zcards to the producer. All models booked are experienced, women are 1.73 – 1.81 and men are 1.83 – 1.91. The Invited Designers and The Fashion Challenge finalists select the models they wish to use. Your agency needs to contact should they wish to submit material for consideration. All models must be local, as the event will not pay for any travel expenses.

How do I interpret the year’s theme ?
It is a very elegant, chic, stylish and classical. Judges will be looking for garments that are on trend and beautifully executed, fit, quality and finish are very important. Consider all aspects of your look, the hat, accessories, shoes and overall grooming. You are designing or dressing for a raceday, not an evening event, please keep this in mind.


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