Top 10 young designers chosen for VDJ award

At the end of an evening of rollicking cutting-edge fashion, the remaining students designers in the running for the Vodacom Durban July Young Designer Award, presented by Durban Fashion Fair, were trimmed from twenty five to ten names. With friends and family whooping support, the five judges scrutinised the outfits designed against the raceday theme ‘The Colour Of Magic’, and eventually settled on the top ten to go through to the finals twenty four hours later.

Living up to its billing, the students, from four different design colleges from across KwaZulu-Natal, delivered creatively inspiring and technically zany outfits that took in extreme fashion elements from PVC to cable-ties, stunning the judges with their ability to push the design envelope.

Six of the ten finalists represented the Durban University of Technology (DUT), two from the Lindiwe Khuzwayo Academy of Fashion Design, and one apiece from Inscape Education Group and the Pietermaritzburg School of Fashion Design.

“The student designers never fail to deliver,” said fashion programme director Tiffany Prior. “Numerically we had a very big entry this year, but creatively the students have really shown great insight in their interpretation of the theme.”

Samkelisiwe Mbatha with model Masego, model Luvuyo with Katekani Moreku, Edith with Sbonelo Sosibo, (front from left) model Tyler-Page with Kirsten Godfrey and Nasreen Paruk with model Janine.

A stellar panel of judges will decided on the eventual winner at Tuesday evening’s showing of the Vodacom Durban July Fashion Experience, but the winner only be announced on the Action Stage on the day of the Vodacom Durban July.

The 10 finalists are: Mnotho Ngema, Thabani Khawula, (Lindiwe Khuzwayo Academy of Fashion Design), Sbonelo Sisobo (Pietermaritzburg School of Fashion), Kirsten Godfrey (Inscape Education Group), Hlengiwe Mdunge, Nokwe Mazibuko, Samkelisiwe Mbatha, Siphesihle Zikhali, Katekani Moreku, Nasreen Paruk (Durban University of Technology).

The 2017 Vodacom Durban July takes place at Greyville Racecourse on Saturday, July 1. More information can be found at

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