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Durban University of Technology (DUT) Alumna, Fikile Zamagcino Sokhulu is making fashion strides in the industry and was recently one of the finalists of the virtual South African Fashion Week New Talent Search Competition 2021; showcasing her fashion collection, Willow, at the prestigious digital event. 

Feminine and organic aesthetics are associated with her brand Fikile Zamagcino Sokhulu (FZS). Sokhulu studied at DUT, received her National Diploma in Fashion Design in 2017. She presented for the first time at the South African Fashion Week, as a student for DUT’s Rise of the OXX show in 2018.

She then started her brand label FZS in April 2018. Sokhulu was also one of fashion designers who showcased at the Cape Town Resort Wear 2019. Her brand FZS also collaborated with Mr Price and created a fashion collection which launched at the beginning of last year, 2020. 

“As a brand FZS is looking forward to creating an organic aesthetic that would appeal to an ageless contemporary market,” she said. 

Her design style is widely influenced by feminine fashion details which is reflected in the silhouettes within the designs created. 

She shared her exhilarating experience as one of the finalists of the virtual South African Fashion Week new talent search competition 2021, saying that it was an exciting opportunity and experience for her brand to be part of the competition. 

Elaborating more on her garment collection that she had showcased at the SA Fashion Week, Sokhulu relayed that her designs and the details are inspired by serenity derived from the idea of water and gentleness and flexibility of the willow tree. 

“My print design is inspired by yin yang koi fish. Water and fire is resembled by a combination of red and white in colour palette. Red is bold and white is calm which references strength and serenity,” she said. 

For the fashion designer, her choice of study and passion was always to study the art of fashion. Also, in terms of her future plans, it includes working further on her brand to help her business expand. 

Willow is a new collection released, and there is a required focus on marketing and selling the new collection,” she said. 

Her advice to upcoming DUT Fashion and Textiles students who would like to take part in fashion competitions, is to grow their brand first. 

“It is important to take the necessary steps that are going to help your business to grow and entering competitions works in helping your business grow a lot,” she said. 

Pictured: Sokhulu’s design showcased at the SA Fashion Week. 

Waheeda Peters 

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