Coming of age

Edcon Design Innovation Challenge – 21 Steps to Retail

Diogenes once said that “The foundation of every state is the education of its youth” and educating and empowering the youth is exactly what Edcon aimed to do when they launched their Design Innovation Challenge in September 2016.

Not only are these young, up and coming designers being taught valuable retail and business knowledge and skills in a matter of months that would otherwise take years to gain, but Edcon has also embarked on growing the local textile and manufacturing industry by having 50% of it’s clothing produced locally.

16 Graduate students from various design colleges and universities are currently on a one-year internship with Edcon where they are exposed to the full spectrum of the retail industry. The Design Innovation Challenge included 21 Steps to Retail, a three month training course facilitated by Runway Productions (organizers of SA Fashion Week). During the three months they visited textile factories, received a surprise and inspirational visit from local designers and of course attended lectures during which valuable knowledge was shared and gained.

Picture courtesy of Runway Productions
Textile factory visit
Picture courtesy of Runway Productions
Surprise visit by Gert Johan Coetzee
Picture courtesy of Runway Productions
Continuous learning

The 21 Steps to Retail challenge saw the 16 interns present their design concepts and calico collections to various members from both Edcon and Runway Productions.

Picture courtesy of Runway Productions
Starts with a sketch
Picture courtesy of Runway Productions
Calico collection

Their final product and completed ranges were showcased during a fashion show which was held on 28 June 2017 at the Apartheids museum in Johannesburg. Attendees included dignitaries from the UN, Proudly South African and various members of the media and fashion industry.

The fashion show saw a video clip of each designer explaining the inspiration behind their range before their spectacular creations were put on display for the world to see.


Maps Ralephenya – COURT 75

FullSizeRender 99

This range is ideal for lazy summer days with it’s lose fitting, flowing garments that simply oozes relaxation.

Maps Ralephenya.001

Faseegha Hassen – NONCHALANT

FullSizeRender 55

I adore the layering of the garments which makes this linen range so versatile. I am not a summer person but with this in my wardrobe, I might just make an exception.

Faseegha Hassen.001

Michelle Dindi – SCARLET x HAZE

FullSizeRender 97

This range oozes femininity with it’s soft color palette and soft textured fabric.

Michelle Dindi.001

Noxi Helu – Helu

FullSizeRender 52

The gorgeous lace detail on each of the garments is evident of it’s all in the detail. By adding the touches of lace it elevates the simplistic garments to another level.

Noxi Helu.001

Nelly Makola – GIFI JACO

FullSizeRender 60

The use of the blue and white print is so clever and unifies this range. Whilst the oversizes cuts adds an element of relaxation and comfort, the frills adds a touch of femininity.

Nelly Makola.001

Tracy Mwelase – TREY DIAMOND

FullSizeRender 67

Can I have all of these please? I absolutely love the colors, lines and fabrications of this collection. This range is the epiphany of class and sophistication.

Tracy Mwelase.001.jpeg

Hlengiwe Gavu – Redemption

FullSizeRender 26

The use of pastels in this range is absolutely delightful and a breathe of fresh air. I am crazy about the ruffles and love how it adds both texture and subtle volume to the pieces.

Hlengiwe Gavu.001.jpeg

Kea Maphologela – Kea.M

FullSizeRender 53

I absolutely love how the pleats add textures to the garments in this range. This collection for me embraces the strong female that makes a statement once she enters a room. And which girl doesn’t like sparkly things?

Kea Maphologela.001.jpeg


Nobuntu Mbhele – I am

FullSizeRender 61

Gents, summer is coming and with this range you will be super cool on those hot days.

Nobuntu Mbhele.001.jpeg

Sthembiso Mchunu – The Watermelon Social Club

FullSizeRender 91

I really like the clever use of lines on the garments to break the solid items as well as the use of two contrasting colors on the garments or outfits to create dimension.

Sthembisu Mchunu.001.jpeg

Push ismokol

FullSizeRender 98

The pop of red adds that unique element on this ready to wear everyday range.

Bibi Maseko.001.jpeg

Thabo Mailula – Black Noise

FullSizeRender 93

What better way to wear denim than head to toe? I absolutely adore the use of zips  on the garments. And who ever said that jumpsuits are just for ladies?

Thabo Mailula.001.jpeg

Lameez Stoltenkamp – Urban Outlaw 69

FullSizeRender 51

This relaxed everyday range can be dressed up or down and is so versatile. I especially love the oversized lightweight jackets and clever necklines that can be converted and worn as a hoodie.

It is easy to see why Lameez won the grand prize with her designs.

Lameez Stoltenkamp.001.jpeg

Shaylene Morris – BI PAREL

FullSizeRender 56

I was fascinated by the volume and texture created by the jackets and shirts and this was balanced perfectly by the cleaner lines of the pants, a delightful combination.

Shay won the third prize with her collection.

Shaylene Morris.001

Kabelo Legodi – Yung Blood Apparel

FullSizeRender 50

I love this streetwear range, especially the use of the different fabrications that would not normally be associated with streetwear. The color combinations and textures take this collection to a new level. This could definitely be worn literally everywhere and by anyone.

Kabelo Legodi.001

Arnold Phasha – AGEO

FullSizeRender 92

You can never go wrong with black. Keeping the pants simple with dramatic jackets and shirt was a sure winner. I love the grunge aspect of metal combined with different fabrications giving the collection a rock-n-roll yet sophisticated look and feel.

Arnold was the runner up for the event.

Arnold Phasha.001.jpegIt was evident from their ranges, why these 16 young designers were chosen for this challenge and why they are a force to be reckoned with.

The talent shown by these young designers were mind blowing and I am sure we will be seeing a whole lot more from in the future. I know for a fact that I will be wearing a few of their outfits and can’t wait to see what they come up with next, how about you?

Thank you for reading, I would love to hear your thoughts so please do comment in the section below.

Remember, support local #proudlySouthAfrican




19 thoughts on “Coming of age

  1. Excellent beat ! I would like to apprentice while you amend your web site, how can i subscribe for a blog web site? The account helped me a acceptable deal. I had been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast provided bright clear concept


  2. I carry on listening to the news broadcast talk about getting boundless online grant applications so I have been looking around for the top site to get one. Could you tell me please, where could i find some?


  3. I have noticed that in old digital cameras, extraordinary receptors help to concentrate automatically. The sensors with some video cameras change in contrast, while others utilize a beam of infra-red (IR) light, specially in low lumination. Higher spec cameras oftentimes use a mixture of both programs and may have Face Priority AF where the camera can ‘See’ some sort of face while focusing only upon that. Many thanks for sharing your ideas on this web site.


  4. Yet another thing I would like to talk about is that as opposed to trying to match all your online degree courses on times that you conclude work (since the majority of people are fatigued when they come home), try to find most of your classes on the saturdays and sundays and only 1 or 2 courses on weekdays, even if it means taking some time away from your weekend. This is fantastic because on the saturdays and sundays, you will be more rested and concentrated for school work. Thanks a bunch for the different suggestions I have learned from your blog.


  5. I am also writing to make you be aware of what a incredible experience our daughter encountered viewing your blog. She mastered several things, including what it is like to possess a great coaching style to have other folks very easily completely grasp selected grueling subject areas. You really exceeded visitors’ desires. Many thanks for imparting such productive, trusted, educational and as well as cool thoughts on that topic to Lizeth.


    1. Thank you so much. That really brings a smile to my face and I really appreciate hearing such good feedback.

      Please be sure to follow my blog as well as my social media pages for more insightful and inspiring posts.


  6. My spouse and I love your blog and find almost all of your post’s to be just what I’m looking for. can you offer guest writers to write content for you? I wouldn’t mind producing a post or elaborating on some the subjects you write concerning here. Again, awesome weblog!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s