STUDENT style raced home at Fairview Racecourse this weekend with second-year NMMU fashion design talent livening up the East Cape Derby on Mother’s Day.
Phumelela Gaming had asked 16 students to present garments to the theme “Art at the Races” for an outdoor fashion show on the afternoon of the East Cape Derby. Hats were compulsory for female guests, who were asked to “dress to impress” in the VIP section, and most student designs also gave the nod to headgear.
A stylish judging panel of Shahnaz Williams – immaculate herself in a dove-grey Jason Kieck gown – Algoa FM radio personality Lauren Mungur and NMMU communications head honcho Pieter Swart voted Cleo Allison’s range the winner.
The 19-year-old Allison said her garments – modelled by her sister, Amber, 17, and friend Stanley Allers – were inspired by a wrecked sculpture found after a tornado.
“The silhouette of the garments portray the forces of nature and natural disasters like tornadoes and twisters,” said Allison of her items.
Vuyolwethu Dlwati won second place for her maroon and grey range inspired by Jane Alexander’s sculpture The Butcher Boys while Hlumela Sota took third prize for her garments inspired by the colour and structure of African clay pots.
Allison wins a trip to a major national race plus R5000 cash from Phumelela, while Dlwati and Sota win R3000 and R2000 and other prizes respectively.
Each student had chosen a work of art as their starting point, with inspirations ranging from anime fantasy, Japanese Zen culture, Sirens of the Lambs by Banksy, a garden of metal roses, abstract art, surrealism, the holy trinity of Christianity, the Louvre’s pyramid and graffiti artist Hush’s geisha art were a few of the other thematic choices.
Sadiya Moola was inspired by words not images, taking the nursery rhyme Incy Wincy Spider as her starting point: “these designs are a more realistic, fearsome replica of the children’s version,” she said of her black and blue outfits.
Programme leader for fashion and textile design Harm Grobbelaar said there had been “a lot of overtime for the students and their lecturer. Some garments were very difficult to make, especially for second-year students, but they did it!” – Gillian McAinsh