Three DUT Students Are Through to The Finals of The VDJ Young Designer Competition

Three DUT Students Are Through to The Finals of The VDJ Young Designer Competition


“I feel very excited more than anything to be a part of Vodacom Durban July student designer competition, a little nervous too because this is my first time competing on such a large scale,” said an elated Tanyaradzwa Tirivanhu.

The dynamic Durban University of Technology (DUT) Fashion Design student is one of the three DUT fashion students chosen to showcase their outfits at the Vodacom Durban July which takes place at Greyville Racecourse on Saturday, 6 July 2019.

His amazing garment depicts a story about the women of Weya located East of Zimbabwe, and it is also inspired by their embroidery, patchworks and beading. 

The other two finalists from DUT in the Vodacom Durban July Young Designer competition are Wandile Mbhele and Siphiwo Buthelezi.

An elated Buthelezi was over the moon with being selected. He said he is excited to showcase his garment, a two piece that is fully beaded in various colours to reflect his concept of Africa as one country, instead of it looking like different countries.

From an initial entry of 143 completed outfits for the Vodacom Durban July Young Designer Award presented by Durban Fashion Fair, a panel of judges at the Gateway Theatre of Shopping on Friday evening shortlisted 10 finalists in the prestigious student designer competition.

The runway provided excellent insight into ways to interpret the theme “Stars of Africa”, with students using ideas, shapes and silhouettes rooted in traditional African culture and then steering these concepts into contemporary and often futuristic outfits.

The panel of judges, which included Durban design stalwart Greg Wallace, Sindi Shangase of the Durban Fashion Fair and Invited Designer Kathrin Kidger, enthused over the depth of interpretation of the theme and the high level of construction of the often challenging designs.

“We have never ever seen the level of excellence in the interpretation of the theme,” said programme director Tiffany Prior. 

“There were beautiful elements of colourful beadwork, handcrafted detailing, self-designed and printed fabrics – it was exceptional,” she added.

To find out more about the competition, go to

Pictured: One of the top three DUT finalists, Siphiwo Buthelezi and model wearing his creation.

Gameplan Media/Waheeda Peters

No comments