Designers set to showcase their talent at this year’s Durban July

Renowned designer Thula Sindi. Picture: Supplied

Renowned designer Thula Sindi. Picture: Supplied

Published Jun 2, 2024


As the excitement builds for one of Africa’s finest horse racing events, Hollywoodbets Durban July, six designers have secured a spot to participate in the Hollywoodbets Durban July Invited Designer Showcase, presented by Durban Fashion Fair.

The designers, four hailing from Durban and two from Johannesburg, will present their creations and interpretations of the theme “Ride the Wave”.

Last year, guests embraced the theme “Out of This World”, which brought attendees from different walks of life together for the momentous occasion in eye-catching garments.

This year’s line-up includes four Durban designers, including well-known rockstars Karen Monk-Klijnstra and the iconic Kathrin Kidger, as well as two newbies, Kwenzi Khomo and Makhosi Ntshangase. Joburg designers include Vanya and Thando Mangaliso, a husband-and-wife pair, and Thula Sindi.

Speaking about the designers, Hollywoodbets Durban July fashion programme director Tiffany Prior said people should brace themselves for something creative as they try to make sure that each designer brings something unique.

“We have two newbies, two from Johannesburg, and some old favourites like Kathrin Kidger and Karen Monk-Klijnstra. I think between all six, you are going to see something quite remarkable.

“A previous winner of the Hollywoodbets Durban July Young Designer Award and both protégés of the DFF mentorship programme, Kwenzi (Indoni Fashion House) and Makhosi (Sistas Felas) have been included. As always, we are trying to make sure that we stay true to the brand and ethos of the Durban Fashion Fair, which is about building the fashion industry and helping individual growth — the Hollywoodbets Durban July Fashion Experience is a huge platform for anyone,” she said.

Kwenzi, who will be making her Hollywoodbets Durban July Invited Designer debut, said: “I am so excited. It’s amazing. It really, really surprised me when I was invited to participate. The theme means freedom to me, and I took my inspiration from the seashore — the colours of the sand. I used shells, representing the highs and lows of my life, and seaweed. Mine is an authentic expression of my life.”

Kwenzi, the owner of the Indoni Fashion House label, stated that it had evolved and developed significantly since its inception.

Sun Goddess, a powerhouse brand from Johannesburg, is owned by husband-and-wife pair Vanya and Thando Mangaliso, who have over 20 years of retail and industry experience.

“We are so excited by the opportunity to participate again. It’s not our first time, but it is still amazing. The Invited Designers showcase is about inclusivity. And being in Durban again will give us a chance to reconnect with our clients down there,” said Vanya.

Mangaliso defined Sun Goddess as the archetypal SA luxury brand, dedicated to boosting South African aesthetics and conveying a South African story.

“We are about local traditions, local cultures and global trends and styles. We are more than our creations; the brand has grown and now includes sunglasses and fragrances,” he said.

This will take place at a one-of-a-kind event that is expected to set the tone and mood for the fashion spectacle that has become synonymous with Africa’s largest horse racing event. |