The Durban Fashion Fair (DFF) programme empowers and recognises unrivalled talents in the world of Durban fashion.
This year, it showcased and honoured jaw dropping work of approximately 17 designers to potential buyers during the Class of 2020 Fashion Showcase and Recognition Awards held at Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre on Friday evening, 11 December.
This year’s DFF mentorship programme was overseen by Fezile Mdletshe, managing director and founder of the Fezile Fashion Skills Academy and the Fezile Mdletshe Fashion Agency in KwaMashu. Over 200 young mentees had successfully been empowered through the DFF mentorship programme funded by the Municipality which has run for over nine years.
The most eagerly anticipated award of the evening- the Durban Designer of the Year 2020 – went to THE FIFTH, which comprises 8th Wanda (Nokwanda Ngcobo), Indoni Fashion House (Kwenzi Nkomo), Nkosazane (Mandi Zuma), Sibu Msimang, Silomo's Boutique (Silomo Ntombela) and Zaviar Fashion House (Zama Gumede).
The Collection of the Week award went to highly respected Durban designer, Leigh Schubert who has been designing unique yet timeless smart and casual ladies wear since 2002.
The Best Ladies Wear Collection 2020 Award went to Libo Creations which is headed up by Sizwe Mncube while the Best Menswear Collection Award 2020 went to DUKE "Clothe Your Soul" headed by designer Sandile Duke Mngadi.
The 2020 Fashion Innovator Award went to Quiteria Atelier and its head designer, Quiteria Kekana.
The highly anticipated Rising Star Award, which picks out the top performing designer mentee of the year, went to Nompumelelo Mjadu. The Fezile Mdletshe Fashion Agency added two more merit awards for this year’s mentees – which went to Sandile Sikhakhane who “went from zero to hero” overnight and to Sipho Lushaba who never missed a day of training and displayed significant degrees of discipline and professionalism in his work.
Six years ago, the DFF introduced a model search, providing an opportunity for youngsters from disadvantaged communities to not only get themselves on the DFF ramp but also to begin to build modelling careers. The 2020 DFF New Face of the Year (ladies’ category) award went to Sebolelo Hlabi, the New Face of the Year (male category) went to Vukile Magwaza and the New Face of the Year (plus size category) award went to Nokwethemba Zondo.
Catch all the fashion action from the #DFF2020 on the Facebook page: Durban Fashion Fair or on Twitter / Instagram @Dbnfashion_fair.