This past weekend (31st and 1st August) the second annual Colour in the Desert Fashion Week took place at Phakalane Golf Estate in Gaborone. The brain child of Mpho Kuaho and Tsoseletso Magang, the event aims to bring together the talents of both local designers and Pan African designers. Aside from providing some exquisite visuals for fashion lovers, it also aims to push fashion as a business here in Botswana where it is still in its infancy. In addition to the existence of the Lapologa Gaborone Fashion weekend that took place less than 3 weeks ago, fashion in Botswana has ample support to continue growing.
The local designers that flaunted their talents included Aobakwe Molosiwa, Lindiwe Keitz, Lebang Setso and Theo Rags. Pan African designers included Gert Johan Coetzee, Mustafa Hasanali, Joyce Chimenye and Soucha. The show was produced by the extremely efficient and professional production team Umzingeli headed by Jan Malan who is most known for his production work with M-net Face of Africa. Models walked the ramp in a mix of practical and high drama pieces by the picturesque pond just outside the Phakalane Golf estate club house. Swim wear was also featured this year as well as a line of leather accessories by local designer Lebang Setso.
Local models and international models based in South Africa graced the runway wearing the creations of various designers. For many of the local models this was a rare experience that they get to have once a year, twice if they are lucky enough to also be chosen to model in the Lapologa Gaborone Fashion Weekend. Every moment they spend rehearsing, doing fittings or walking on the runway is the taste of a dream they may never get to realize in full due to the lack of a sizable fashion industry here.
This year Cape Town based photographer Per-Anders Pettersson shadowed the girls throughout the week and captured them waiting or working before and during the shows. His images show the calm frenzy that the backstage atmosphere has; designers making last minute adjustments to clothes, make up artists frantically putting on wigs, models recalling routines or waiting to step on to the runway and the general nervous excitement of it all. Previous to the show there is days of waiting and hours of practice, then it’s show time and it lasts but a few minutes. It all goes by so fast for the backstage team rarely do they get a chance to stop and take it all in. Per-Anders Pettersson and his camera froze the moments in a collection of beautiful images below. Enjoy.
A sincere thank you to Per-Anders Pettersson for allowing me to use his images. Visit his website to see more of his work. As I do not posses any runway images I will put links below from other blogs or Facebook pages as and when they appear.
Mustafa Hassanali: View his Pink desert collection that he debuted at the Colour in the desert fashion week here.
Haus of Kings: Fellow blogger Uyapo at Haus of Kings takes a look at the mens fashion at the show.
Haus of Kings: A detailed look at various collections
Gilded Sands: A look at the Gilded sands collection on the Gilded Sands blog.
Taibo Bacar: View a video a friend of mine took of his collection on the runway below.
Gert Johan Coetzee: View a video a friend of mine took of his collection on the runway below.
All in all beautiful stunning show. Make sure you put next year’s show in your diary!