Renowned Fashion Designer, Thabiso Dibeela of Thabie D, is back from Ghana, Accra Fashion Week, where she rubbed shoulders with top international designers from all over the world.
The local designer, whose name is synonymous with prominent beauty pageants such as Miss Botswana and Miss World, said she had no idea of the business prospects her industry presents outside Botswana.
Speaking at a media and partner appreciation session held recently at Lorraine’s Ntlo Maison French Bistro located at the Fairscape Precinct, Dibeela described the event as ‘extremely informative’.
“I saw pieces of clothes that had been bought even before they hit the runway,” she gushed excitedly of the memories permanently embroidered into her, adding that she aspires to have the local industry grow beyond the levels she witnessed in Ghana.
As a staunch patriot of the local fashion scene, Dibeela, who has an Honors Degree in Fashion Design, stitched her way into the minds of many fashion-conscious individuals and continues to do so.
She plans to engage the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Culture Development (MYESC) on projects to grow the industry.
“We are looking to get local designs into the retail market through the stores that operate in Botswana.
I never knew how big this industry could get and my aim is to see most shops being supplied by Batswana,” explained the woman who has ten years experience in the fashion industry.
Reminiscing over the Accra Fashion Week, which took place from the 3rd to the 8th of October, she said, “It was the excursion of a lifetime and will help in getting my creations out into the African and subsequently the international markets.”
Dibeela stressed that there is real money in mass production and urged the government to assist designers to reach a level where they can supply international retail outlets.
The visibly appreciative design genius divulged that she has in the past, worked with the Botswana Bureau of Standards (BOBS) to formulate a local standardised measurement for designers.
“I had realised that the international standards of measuring could not accommodate women with Setswana figures as they have hour-glass body types,” she highlighted – a remark that prompted giggles from the women in the audience.