Kwa-Zulu Natal resident Kathrin Kidger journeys into the cultures of our beautiful rainbow nation with her latest collection. She explored one of the age-old traditions of lobola and the 2014 Design Indaba will be the stage for the unveiling of this range.
1) What do you most look forward to during Design Indaba?
Meeting other like minded creatives. Interacting with people who understand the challenges of local production, as well as chatting to buyers who understand what your label is about simply at a glance.
2) Can you tell us more about what you’ll be showcasing?
I am constantly fascinated and inspired by the rich and diverse heritage of African woman. One of the traditions that is still deeply embedded in the modern day life of woman living in my province is Lobola. The main motivation behind this now controversial tradition is to bond families with the giving of gifts and cows. One of which is the exchange of clothing and the wearing of bright colours to the ceremonies themselves. These colours are displayed not only in the richness of the cloth that is used to make garments and in brightly coloured blankets, but in the painting of traditional living abodes and the bead work that Africa is so well known for.
This background of both rich tradition and scenic splendour has been the inspiration behind the explosion of colours I have chosen for my range. With the combining of different colours in each garment and intricate panelling I have depicted my roots in this wonderful country, aptly called the Rainbow nation. Celebrating the preservation of our heritage and my love of this fascinating and always controversial continent where I was born and raised.
3) What inspired this collection?
I will be showcasing a range inspired by the age-old tradition of Lobola.
4) In your opinion, what is the importance of an event such as the Design Indaba?
Design Indaba is an amazing platform on which to not only market a brand but also gives designers the opportunity to showcase concepts and ideas that fall outside the realm of commercialism. It is so important to have a vetted collective designers (across the design board) showcasing to not only a national audience but an international one. It is this process that ensures forums like Design Indaba remain internationally acclaimed.