Connect with us


Durban Fashion Fair Mentorship Programme Models Young Designers



The Durban Fashion Fair (DFF) Mentorship Programme is gathering momentum as 19 young designers strive to learn all they can about the world of fashion whilst also qualifying for an opportunity for a second mentorship experience of a lifetime in one of the world’s fashion capitals.

The DFF is a proudly eThekwini initiative developed to grow the fashion industry at large and to formulate employment opportunities and entrepreneurship in our city.

Scores of young designers put their names forward in November last year and 19 were chosen to take part in the programme which includes working closely with some of the city’s top fashion gurus as well as their fellow designers.

As the programme progresses, a minimum of nine aspiring designers will be eliminated from the programme until the maximum of 10 head to Milan for a firsthand experience of the international world of fashion between September & November.

The interns, who range in age from 23 to 35, are all currently working in the fashion industry. Selection was based on three pillars – creativity (which was judged on story boards and garment construction) as well as business acumen (a traceable client base, business plan and business skills).

This month, two of the above 2015 mentees will join the four interns from last year who went to Milan together with invited and established designers in showcasing their creations at an exciting fashion show, hosted by Gelvenor Textiles who are currently celebrating 50 years within the textile industry.

Themed Fashion Over the Decades, this will see the interns divided into groups with each group showcasing fashion from a particular decade, starting with the swinging sixties and ending with the start of the 2000 and beyond. It will bring together the city’s fashionistas as well as buyers, suppliers and industry leaders and media.

All the successful interns from last year and this year will also see their work on the ramp at the Durban Fashion Fair later this year!

According to Sindi Shangase, the Programme Manager for the Business Support Tourism and Markets Unit and who has driven the DFF since inception in 2012, the mentorship programme is intended to train enterprising young designers in all aspects of the fashion business and prepare them and their collections for the DFF and, finally, for mentorship in Milan.

Programme mentors are G & D Apparel’s, Greg Wallis and respected Durban based designer, Terrence Bray, who will assist with orientation, choice of textiles, collection design and styling amongst other clothing related matters and Greg Wallis who will not only guide interns on orientation and textile selection but provide valuable information regarding manufacturing, brand management, costing and entering the world of retail.

Guest lecturers from the industry are all revered members and will take invited turns in assisting in the development of these mentees.

Interns competing for the Milan mentorship are provided with different design briefs each week and assignments. They work in teams, selecting a team leader and critting each other’s work. They are also taught to build collections from start to finish whilst additional modules will show these aspiring designers how to run their own successful businesses.

Gelvenor Textiles, one of Durban’s biggest success stories in the textile arena, will contribute a substantial financial input to the DFF Mentorship Programme and sponsor the eagerly anticipated May fashion show which, Gelvenor will host at the Sibaya Casino.

The company is a big name in the global specialist  textile arena. This Hammarsdale based manufacturer’s products include apparel fabrics, specialised sport and outdoor fabrics, ballistic and flame retardant textiles, aeronautical textiles, print and coat base cloths, multifilament filtration media and speciality reinforcing grids and scrim industrial fabrics. Its brands are Qantec, Qantec microfiber, Granite, APC, Team Puma and Airotec.

Gelvenor Textiles’ success lies in continual investment in research and technology and in an on-going drive for the production of the highest quality innovative fabrics.

To find out more about the Durban Fashion Fair, log on to, visit official facebook page:  or Twitter

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Buzzart is Back & it’s All Green




The KZNSA Gallery’s biggest local-only Christmas fair is open… and runs until 12 January 2020. This year’s Buzzart theme of ‘BEING GREEN’ focuses on goods and activities, that are recycled, up-cycled, reworked, previously loved, home-grown, indigenous, organic, carbon friendly – and beautiful.

As calls for climate change grow louder and people all over the world speak out about climate change and environmental catastrophe, it is incumbent on all of us to find ways to live greener and consume responsibly.

Artistic director of the KZNSA, Angela Shaw is encouraging shoppers to “avoid the busy malls and do your festive and new year shopping in your local neighbourhood instead, while supporting independent designers and makers. Not only does it take the stress out of the festive season, but it also reduces our carbon footprint and puts income back into the local economy,” Shaw adds.

Even though each one of this year’s artists, designers and artisans have produced a diverse variety of gifts, artworks and crafts, they all have one thing in common…to limit their impact on the planet!

By using sustainable materials, cutting down on packaging and single-use plastics and re-using / re-purposing, their work is promoting a zero waste lifestyle.

Chifunilo Mulusa

Chifunilo Mulusa


*  Internationally renowned designer, Amanda Laird Cherry and Louis de VilliersCollaborative Clothing Capsule

* Surf, Street, Skate Zone  – Granadilla SwimwearZigzag Magazine, Simon and Mary hats, Sealand BagsA Love Supreme beach towels

Plant Zone – Indigenous house plants for your Christmas table décor and Christmas trees from Gods Green Gifts, Dennis Dyas of Urban Muthi, Skokiana nursery, Eyako Green (recycled billboard plant bag range), Magic Bean Foundation (crochet planter bags from recycled plastic bags), Bonsai installation by Art Bouy, Bren Brophy.

Kids Zone – Books, décor, clothes & stuffed toys

Art – collectable Sthenjwa Luthuli original works, Grace Kotze and Janet Solomon paintings, Nikhil Tricam, Nindya Bucktowar, Lindani Nyadeni, Lungisani Ndlovu, Lindokhule Khumalo, Fiona Kirkwood, Karla Nixon, plus Ready to use frames

* Photography – Cedric Nunn, Samora Chapman, Helen Walne, Lisa Beasley, Keri Muller, Jerome Stoffels, Garth Walker, Madisa Buthelezi

* Art books & publications – specialist books and magazines at great prices

Upcycled & Organic Processes – Birgit Jewellery, Carole Paxton plant-dyed textiles, spectacular upcycled clothing and bags from Leandi Mulder, ZStitch and Pattern Nation

Cute Trash

Cute Trash


In addition to the Buzzart fair, a number of activations and exhibitions will be on offer to gallery visitors:

Café and Shopping evenings – every Thursday the Arts Café and BUZZART will stay open until 20.00 for shopping and delicious meals under the Acacias. These evenings are aimed at the whole Family, so bring the kids along after work or the beach …and make the most of Durban’s fabulous Summer weather.

–  14 – 24 November / PARK GALLERY – For ten days, view the photographic body of work, Still City, by Aik Christodoulou, as mentored by Matt Kay

– Every Tuesday & Thursday / GLASS BOX – From 10h00 – 14h00, award-winning Independent publication, Ja. Magazine, hosts free zine, collage and writing workshops

– LIVE MUSIC – With Tony Cox and daughter, Thuli Cox, on Thursday 19 December, 19h00

First Thursdays – evening trading and live music on Thursday 5 December 2019 and Thursday 2 January 2020, 16h30 – 21h00

Previously loved books and clothes vendors in the courtyard every Sunday from 24 November – Sunday 12 January.

By way of a guide to visitors to the gallery looking for the perfect locally-produced gifts, each week has been themed to focus on  particular offerings:

*  WEEK 1 –  18 November – Teacher’s gifts and indigenous Christmas trees

*  WEEK 2 –  25 November – Focus on Photography – The Park Gallery becomes a photography group show

*  WEEK 3 – 2 December – Home Upgrades – art, textiles, ceramics rugs, plants, Christmas decorations

*  WEEK 4 – 9 December – Kids holiday sessions, activities, street art, zine-making

*  WEEK 5 – 16 December – Focus on Books this long-weekend

*  WEEK 6 – 23 December – Stocking-fillers and last-minute gifts

*  WEEK 7 – 30 December – New Year Party clothes

*  WEEK 8 – 6 January – Back to School with books, bags and stationery

Birch House

Birch House

Continue Reading


Support Local: Saint & Summer



SAINT&SUMMER was created much in the same way it’s now run – captivated by their local surroundings and based on a friendship foundation 20 years deep. It was in 2013 during the humid heat that is Durban in December, that they began piecing together the vision for their business.

We sat down with Julia and Roxy to find out more about the local brand.


1) How did Saint & Summer start?

We’ve been friends for years; long before we ever considered starting a designer footwear business together. Throughout the years, our shared love for fashion, swimwear, clothing and well, just a generally obsessive interest in all things stylish… made it a pretty easy move to start SAINT&SUMMER together.

We’re both beach obsessed, and one balmy Durban Summer, we got chatting about how to turn our passion into something adventurous. We wanted to share our love for style with our friends and other fashion-forward ladies out there. And so SAINT&SUMMER was born.

Sun kissed bodies, vibrant sunsets, punchy cocktail umbrellas and sandy hues became the mood board for our first SAINT&SUMMER’s range of matte jelly sandals – and now 5 years in – we’ve just launched an exciting swoon-worthy AW19 range that has everything from two-toned sneakers to studded block heels, sheen prints and leopard skin slip-ons.

2) What makes your brand proudly Urbanite?

We’re for everyone. All the looks, all the sass, all the versatility that the modern woman needs to rock her own unique sense of style. Our styles can be paired with any outfit. So whether it’s a pair of skinny tight jeans or a flowing boho-dress, the shoes fit!

Our SAINT&SUMMER shoes are easy to wear, easy to pair and have longevity with wearable fabrics, on-trend patterns and styles, and creative colour palettes that mix with every season.

3) What sets your brand apart from others?

We’re really passionate about fashion and we source shoes that we know we would be proud to wear any day of the week. It’s important to us that the shoes burst with personality and style because you can tell a lot about a person by their shoes J.

Our SAINT&SUMMER styles are super versatile too, and can take you right through from the morning to evening with their on-trend looks. Which is why comfort is also very key.

4) Would you consider a mens range in the future, or is it only for women?

We haven’t before but as our brand grows we are actually being asked this question a lot more frequently… so who knows, anything is possible

5) What is your vision with Saint & Summer?

To give fashionable women a unique way to express their individuality through style, in comfort, and within budget.

6) How can we purchase a pair? Online or in store?

We have an online store where fans can browse the ranges and purchase our shoes online at We also have a list of stockists on our site, detailing all the stores that stock and sell SAINT&SUMMER shoes so customers can have a look and see which stockists are in their area if they want to go and try on or browse the styles.

7) Do you have any advice for first time business starters?

Very simply… get dirty, work hard, be ready for mistakes It’s all a part of the journey.


View their range online at

Continue Reading





Durban’s iconic I heart Market is a welcoming space for fans to spend a morning outdoors with friends, browsing over 100 stalls filled with hand and homemade goodies, produced right here in South Africa.

This Spring, the I heart Market vendors will be doing a Spring Clean of their own, as they put all their best sellers on sale, giving shoppers a chance to really enjoy some of their favourite products at some seriously low prices.

I heart SPRING SALE Market takes place twice a year; September and February and it is an exciting day out for everyone involved. “The I heart SPRING SALE Market gives vendors an opportunity to offer their customers great deals with bargain bins, sale rails and special offers on their end of range items and older stock,” says Anna Savage, founder of the I heart Market.

The I heart SPRING SALE is a highlight of the year, both for our vendors and the shoppers. It’s a super exciting market with people arriving in throngs, and some of Durban’s finest creatives offering exceptional and well-made products for less. There’s a thrill that comes with discovering a beautiful item and then getting it at a fraction of the price.”

From fresh foods to local fashion, children’s toys and clothing to homeware, décor, jewellery and treats for every taste; the I heart SPRING SALE Market takes place on Saturday the 1st of September and trades from 9am – 2pm.

I Heart Market

I Heart Market

There’s a great buzz in the marquees as traders and shoppers negotiate special deals and prices; while others search for that special gem they’ve been coveting. Understandably, sales items go very quickly so get there early, grab your coffee and shop ‘til your hearts content.

Unlike a typical flea market, the I heart Market is not a place you come to find a bargain, but rather to discover beautiful, bespoke items and support local entrepreneurs and crafters,” says Anna. “We realized that it was important for us to channel any discounts into a specific Sale Market in order to maintain our reputation as one of Durban’s’ premium craft markets. That way our customers can look forward to finding great deals twice a year, and they can expect a top-class market showcasing Durban’s incredible makers for the rest of the year.”

If you can’t make this I heart SALE Market, be sure to catch their next SALE Market on 2nd February 2019 at the Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban.

Continue Reading

We Are Social