Fashionistas in for treat

FRESH from the titillating Cape Town Fashion Week, fashion lovers are in for another treat. This time all roads lead to Mpumalanga where some of the big fashion names in South Africa will showcase their designs at the Mpumalanga Fashion Week.

The four-day fashion jamboree will take place at the White River's Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre from August 31 to September 4.

The show, which is now in its third year running, has previously attracted bad publicity for mismanagement, bad planning and debt of about R2million.

This time the show is under new management and organiser Thami Njoko said they had managed to salvage the event.

"We are trying to put up a very big show this time," she said. "We will have more than 15 designers. We want to create a platform for young and up-and-coming designers to get exposure.

"This is a fantastic opportunity to put Mpumalanga firmly on the fashion map. Mpumalanga is a stylish province and has the ability to fuse quirky vintage style with sculpted, fashion-led design.

By incorporating reputable designers such as Bongiwe Walaza, Palesa Mokubung, Sister Bucks, Hip Hop Fashion, John Sithole and Nhlanhla Nciza, we are able to send out a positive message about the show," Njoko said.

This year will also see fashion designers from countries such as Mozambique and Swaziland taking part in the event.

The line-up also includes Sello Medupe and Simphiwe Hlophe. Penny Lebyane, one of the directors, is also on board.

Njoko added that they were also looking to forge a buyer-designer relationship where they will also host retail buyers.

Their aim is to equip the new designers with the skills, in a sustainable way, to run their own fashion business, or at least to understand how to form part of the larger picture.

He added that they had partnered with Mpumalanga Tourism, Da Gama Fabrics, Comair and Southern Sun, among others to make the event a memorable one.

"This is not only about fashion. The event also has a tourism spin. We want people to come and experience Mpumalanga."

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