Durban-based Fikile Sokhulu – a Design Indaba Emerging Creative for 2022 – has always had a passion for fashion. She graduated with a National Diploma in Fashion Design from the Durban University of Technology and has already collaborated with the likes of Mr Price and taken part in Milan Fashion Week.
The young designer speaks to Design Indaba about her aesthetic, her hopes for the future, and what inspires her collections.
How did you get into fashion, and what drew you to the industry?
I have always had an interest in art and design. I studied at the Durban University of Technology and was one of the designers who took part in a new talent search competition at South African Fashion Week in 2018. Being able to show my work on such a platform assisted in launching my brand.
Describe your aesthetic – what makes your work unique?
As a brand we are inspired by nature and femininity. We embrace the idea of a garment that tells a story, and we strongly appreciate references to art when creating a collection.
Who or what inspires you most and why? And what inspires your fashion?
The idea of a feminine woman who is gentle, calm, and dwells within an organic atmosphere inspires the aesthetic of our brand.
Career highlights to date?
Collaborating with Mr Price has definitely been a career highlight. I was also one of four fashion designers from South Africa who took part in the 2021 Fashion Bridges project, which aimed at fashion collaboration between South Africa and Italy and included sponsors such as Polimoda in Florence, the Nelson Mandela Forum, Lineapelle Fair, South African Fashion Week, the Italian Trade Agency and many more. We were each paired with an Italian designer from Polimoda and I learnt a lot during the project.
What's next for you?
I am currently studying online at the Milano Fashion Institute – I’m studying for a Masters in brand and business management as I want to grow my knowledge of the business side of fashion.
I will be showcasing my work at the next season of South African Fashion Week – and I’m really excited to be one of the selected Design Indaba Emerging Creatives for 2022!
Credit: Fikhile Sokhulu