Development of Fashion Designers
Fashion has formed another crucial, yet exciting arm of our skills development programme. Using the European model of linking art to fashion, Ifa Lethu has embarked on a range of projects aimed at developing in youth an interest in South African art, as well in building pride in being South Africa. This has been accomplished through the creation of the range of casual clothing named the Ifa Lethu Heritage Collection.
Art & Fashion
The launch of the Ifa Lethu fashion design development program was a landmark decision for the Foundation. This venture is key to Ifa Lethu because we believe that there’s a strong link and synergy between our organisational mandate of promoting pride through heritage and is a marrying of two highly inter-related art forms, art and fashion,. While education of our youth is focal area for the Foundation, this initiative aims to excite our local young people in a fashion line they will not only want to wear, but wear with pride in being South African. Creating this link between fashion and art has helped to glamorise South Africa heritage, thus increasing its appeal to young South Africans. In the last year we have trained fashion students and designers from KwaZulu-Natal in creating market-ready fashion for sale. We are now marketing the works of three designers throughout the country
We have also taken them to all major fashion shows in South Africa and in Mozambique to showcase and brand their work. Ifa Lethu Foundation launched its fashion line for the 16 -25 age group at the 2007 MTN Durban Fashion Week. Designers Karen Monk Klijnstra, Bonga Bhengu and Gugu Msimang were chosen from several entries for this inaugural collection, with renowned fashion consultant Greg Wallis advising Ifa Lethu on the designs, production and manufacture of the range. Since the original launch at the 2007 MTN Durban Fashion Week, Ifa Lethu released a Winter range and took the collections to the Audi Fashion Week in Johannesburg and the and the Mozambique Fashion Week in Maputo.
A new range was unveiled at the 2008 Durban Fashion Week, and today a line of Ifa Lethu t-shirts may be purchased at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg .