In fashion right now, locally and across , Thebe Magugu is the hottest designer, one that everyone is talking about, everyone wants to wear his clothes and is South Africa’s pride. Magugu is a young designer from Kimberly, trained in Johannesburg and dresses women worldwide. He recently was selected as the top 8 finalist for the LVMH Prize. This prize was established to promote young fashion designers and is based in Paris .”The young Fashion Designers’ competition is open to designers from every country who have produced at least two collections and who are under 40.” The winners get grant of 300 000 euros,(more than R4,7 million ) a personalized technical and financial support from the Group for a 12-month period following the LVMH Prize award.
After showing his work to one of the decision makers in the fashion industry, Anna Wintour, Thebe came back home for #SAFW #SS19 Luxury collections which took place in Sandton.
We caught up with him to talk about meeting Anna Wintour, being an LVMH Prize finalist and his next big plans .
Hazelbird Post : Thebe congratulations . We are so excited for you …….you are officially international! Tell us more about the LVMH Prize that you are a top 8 finalist of.
Thebe Magugu : I wasn’t actually going to apply for it because I felt like it was too early for me but I received a lot of encouragement from people not only locally but international people as well who emailed me and said I must just enter it. So I did. Then I got the news that I had made it when I was exhibiting in London and I was told I have to be in Paris that week. I moved mountains and made it happen and it became the best experience of my life .
Hazelbird Post : Of course it was the best experience of your life…..you met Anna Wintour !!!
Thebe Magugu : She is actually very nice and her husband is South Africa. She was so kind to me when I was explaining my collection. Not only her but Naomi Campbell , Gigi Hadid, all these amazing people who believe in fashion .
Hazelbird Post : That’s really amazing and it’s not an opportunity that happens to everyone everyday. Naomi is currently one of the people advocating for African fashion to have a place in the global arena, so it’s great that she too liked your work. How do you think this experience will assist your career ?
Thebe Magugu : It has already assisted my career. Just by being on the top 8 I have received so many requests from international houses I have always looked up to and projects that are just coming up because of that .It’s an amazing experience .
Hazelbird Post : You haven’t been in this industry for a long time and some of us in the fashion industry have witness your growth from when you came to the scene. Do you look at where you were a few years back and think to yourself “I’ve made it “ or you still feel like you are still in your humble beginnings ?
Thebe Magugu : I don’t think I’ve made it and maybe that’s one of my negative traits because I am always looking forward to a greater accomplishment . I have such a grand vision of what I want and what I want to be in the world of fashion. I also know that God is working overtime for me . God and the sacrifices of other people , my mother . This didn’t just happen, it’s been years and years and as a child I knew this was what I wanted .
Hazelbird Post : You are obviously representing South Africa. How does it make you feel, knowing that you are one of the people flying the South African flag internationally ?
Thebe Magugu : Not a lot of people get this opportunity, so for me to represent South Africa makes it very special. It’s not just about me, it really easy about the country.
Hazelbird Post : What’s next ?
Thebe Magugu : I am starting to export . You can shop for my clothes in Paris and a few places around the globe so that’s where my focus is now.
Pics : Thebe Magugu