‘Batho Fashion Week’ Taps Into Fashion Tourism

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Players in the fashion industry converged at the Kazungula Bridge over the weekend for the second edition of the Batho Fashion Week, a two-day long clothing affair that seeks to tap into the power of fashion tourism.

The event brought together 12 designers, among them those from Namibia and South Africa – who showcased their unique, modern and traditional products, while at the same time having an opportunity to share their ideas and experiences in the fashion industry. The fashion week has been described as a demonstration and contributor to diversification of the tourism sector through value chain development and development of the economy. 

Speaking at the official opening, the event’s Founding Director Emmanuel Kayenda said through the event, they intend to diversify the tourism sector and fill the gap within the fashion tourism. “Our mission is to tap into the yet unexplored realm of fashion tourism and turn it into an economic powerhouse for Botswana,” he said.

Kayenda noted that the event is an entity on its own as it employs close to 72 individuals and seven companies all together. He stressed that the event plays a big role in the development of the economy and creation of employment opportunities.

Environment and Tourism minister Phildah Kereng has said the event is a demonstration of the tourism diversification model which talks to incorporating culture in making Chobe and the rest of Botswana destinations of choice.  She also appreciated that the event gave other creative industry players such as make-up artists, videographers, photographers, decorators and models an opportunity to earn an income.     

Meanwhile, the Weekender had an opportunity to engage with some of the international and local fashion designers about the importance of the fashion show.

The Director and Founder of MTC Windhoek Fashion Week, Luis Monana said that their aim is to collaborate with Batho Fashion Week so that they can have designers, models and local talent from Botswana coming to experience their fashion show in Namibia. He stated that collaborations between fashion designers in the region is key in growing the industry.

Founder of Collections by BK Proctor, Bokang Proctor said attending the event as a fashion oriented brand was an opportunity to share experiences and learn more about the fashion industry. Proctor has assured that he will be showcasing his products in the next edition.

Lorra Royals Marketing Assistant, Godfrey Mo said having been part of the fashion show gave them an opportunity to meet other international fashion designers and network, and believes this help the market their brands better internationally.

“I am delighted that we also got an invitation to participate at the next coming MTC Namibia Fashion Week billed for November this year,” he said.

The designers included Lorra Royals, Baru’s Designs, Olep, Ruth K, Mommy, Sitwala, Bantu Gold, LT Peculiar, Sweetness, Pinky Creations, Mumsy and J Kweendom. A total of 30 models also presented a captivating and extraordinary Spring-Summer collection with a fusion of African culture.

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