There probably is no set barometer to perceive the awesomeness of great initiatives, however, when predestined growth finds a place in the big picture, we cannot possibly question the state of affairs. Such is the rad case with Elle Magazine’s highly regarded association with Mr Price to help launch the next potential designer superstar. This year the ELLE Rising Star Design Award in association with MrP is presented by African Fashion International (AFI) and the finalists will show their designs at the prestigious Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Africa 2014 where the winner will be announced. For the first time, designers from across Africa were invited to enter.
You may or may not know this, but as better articulated by Mr Price trend director and Rising Star judge, Joanne Frederic “The brief for 2014 allowed the entrants the freedom to create their own ranges that are a reflection of their design aesthetic and what they want to stand for as a brand in the fashion industry. There were several strong standouts displaying creativity and a strong technical knowledge.”
The top seven finalists seem to very well indicate strong capabilities to blossom into brilliant designers of our time. There is just something tremendously exciting about ambitious young talent armed with plentiful ideas matched with undeniable talent and an ability to clearly articulate their take on a brief.
@DesignWiltonD – ‘I’ve been fascinated by the obsession with social
media and thought it would be interesting to interpret this obsession in
a collection. The range is inspired by streetstyle and the layering of
websites. I’ve been inspired by pixels, tiny elements that in their
millions allow our fixation of digital media, and for this reason the
collection draws on very square and linear shapes – boxy silhouettes,
square panel lines – and pairs it with transparent layering. I’ve also
used a lot of digital prints that appears like a holographic hashtag and
used dies to create custom made fabrics.
@FrancesPauls -‘I spent a great deal of my childhood exploring the
South African and African coastline. I am inspired by the soft faded
sun-kissed colours that we find above the water’s surface; the soft
tones of the sand, sun-bleached sarongs and faded wood paint and
how these tones are contrasted by the bright luminescent underwater
life with their naturally graphic colours.
@Jeandri_Britz -‘Solid Exterior represents a strong personality. The
way someone will put up their guard and let others only see the idea of
that person, but still give you the idea of vulnerability that can only be
overcome by the suppression of their own emotions. The silhouette
resembles characteristics of a shell, whether it an eggshell or the
fragile skin of a creature. It is what protects our bodies as a hiding
place for your own emotions. I experimented with contrasting fabrics,
working with tough yet see-through materials that hides the body like a
@KelliBotha – ‘My collection is inspired by the androgynous
aesthetic. My work is a combination of masculine and feminine. I have
played with different textures and big versus small silhouettes. My
personal taste that is for less rather than more, negative space and a
less feminine approach all came together as a strong concept.
‘This quote by Robert Greene captures where my collection and
designs stem from: “In a society where the roles everyone plays are
obvious, the refusal to conform to any standard will excite interest. Be
masculine and feminine, impudent and charming, subtle and
outrageous. Let other people worry about being socially acceptable;
those types are a dime a dozen, and you are after a power greater than
they can imagine.” ’
@Sincerelyish – ‘Coast-to-Coast is based on my love for the ocean
and my hometown coastline. My inspiration is drawn from fishermen. I
was inspired by their workwear comprising staple elements like aprons
and parkas where I replicated the aprons used for cleaning fish in their
pinafore styling. The grey Melton reflects the decayed worn quality of
their clothes. The collection comprises several staple articles of
clothing made of natural fibers and natural textures.’
@ViljoenNd – ‘My inspiration for this collection and my future label
comes from illegal art, which I refer to as unfortunate art for it doesn’t
get the full appreciation, attention, exposure and understanding it
deserves. I see this as an opportunity to give some recognition to art
such as graffiti that is usually only been seen by a handful of people
before it is covered with paint.
@Tamara_C_Dyson -‘My womenswear collection showcases discreet
indulgence, carefully considered design, an underlying minimalistic
approach, and a flawless aesthetic – a balanced sense of beauty
emerges through simple perfection.
‘Influenced by the line, shape and form of Bahaus architectural design,
stark linear shapes contrasted with fluid, curved lines flow throughout
the range in striking and subtle ways. I have used predominately
natural fabrics with subtle textural contrasts such as percale, silk
organza and merino with meticulous attention to detail and finishing to
create a wardrobe of luxurious garments and layered surfaces,
highlighting the high-end mood.
I know I am beyond keyed up to meet the next best talent from this pool.