Fashion designer makes runaway debut

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Mimi Machakaire

LOCAL fashion designer, Puleng Monsti recently showcased her first official label titled Nella Pioggia, featuring a wide range of Basotho models to celebrate all shapes and sizes of the human body.

Monsti launched her label last week at Lehakoe which showcased a mixture of traditional Sesotho and modern designs to produce high end fashion for men and women. The designs were displayed by models of all shapes and sizes at a function where South African rapper, Tshego, also known as Pink Panther, entertained the crowd with his latest hit Hennessey.

Speaking to Xpress People, Puleng explained that the label name was derived from Italian, meaning “in the rain”.

She said her aim was to conquer the international market, celebrating celebrate cultural diversity while remaining true to her Sesotho heritage.

“I’m a 23 year old Mosotho designer who studied business administration but I am currently studying fashion design which includes tailoring original material,” Monsti said.

“My label is branded by a company called JUSTSO Clothing and Merchandise in London, England.”

She said her team consists of entrepreneurs who believe in young talent, adding that they decided to engage Basotho models because they were not given many opportunities to display their talent.

She further said another aim of having Basotho was to inspire and encourage the younger generation to be more involved in arts.

“There are brands and franchises growing every day but it’s about knowing what the people want. Sometimes a designer can limit themselves to one type of clothing range such as sweaters and T-shirts but then it doesn’t go any further than that. There’s a lot that goes into business in terms of fashion, which can lead to styling for example.”

Monsti also works as a personal shopper. She added that being employed by different department stores and boutiques had helped her to understand that there is more to fashion than simply designing clothes.

“If someone tells me they want to change their entire wardrobe I do the shopping for them. I show them a style that they may not have seen and once they do their confidence changes dramatically.”

For his part, Lehlohonolo Paul Matela, a Limkokwing student who featured as a model, praised Monsti for showcasing Basotho’s many talents.

“I’m studying Information Technology but it I took on the challenge when one of my friends advised me to try modelling.

“I had fun working with Monsti and her team and I look forward to doing more shows with them”, Lehlohonolo said.

Monsti will also showcase her label at the Fashion Week at Maseru Mall from 7 to 9 December this year.

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