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TWO THINGS I AM SUPER EXCITED ABOUT THIS WEEK /// ELLE RISING STAR AND ATHI-PATRA RUGA

You must have heard by now, earlier this week Elle launched their Rising Star Design Award for 2013, in collaboration with Mr Price. I covered the 2012 competition last year, so if you want a refresh and to check what you can expect follow this here link. You can also check here on the elle website to keep up with the developments. Another reason I am excited is that this year I have been invited to sit on the judging panel, along with really awesome people that I’ve admired from a distance, I am totally looking forward to being part of this experience. Anybody who knows me knows that I am passionate about young design talent, across all sorts of disciplines.

The good stuff: apart from the opportunity to redesign a pre-determined range in collaboration with Mr Price, a cash prize of r25 000 from Mr P is also up for grabs to help the winner launch a fashion career. But wait there’s more, there’s the extensive mentorship programme, during the competition and for twelve months after. This includes two weeks at the Mr P head offices in Durbs, where the winner will be exposed to the complete retail cycle, from trend forecasting to merchandising. I come from 7 years as buyer in the retail background, so trust me that kind of exposure to that level of retail is a brilliant experience for a young designer. In fact, at the Elle presentation to bloggers earlier this week, 2011 winner Cleo Droomer described them two weeks as the best and most valuable part of the prize for him. Last but not least, the winner aslo receives personal coaching by a bussiness expert from the Gordon Institute of Business Science, two weeks fashion inspiration at Elle’s Cape Town office with Editor Jackie Burger and her fashion team, and a year’s subscription to Elle.

The competition is open to final year fashion students, and fashion graduates with no more that 3 years design experience who are not currently employed by a South African retailer.

So what the F are you waiting for? ENTER. HERE. NOW.

The second thing I’m excited about is of a much more personal vibe. Athi is off to Venice along with the other SA artists that will be representing us at the prestigious Venice Biennale. I don’t even know what to say about this skattie, so proud and beyond excited, I don’t even mind being home alone, although I do wish I could be in Venice to see the performance, it’s gonna be next level. Anyway, NOTE TO MY PARTY PEOPLE: got the flat all to myself, let’s party y’all.

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