Local fashion designer Mothusi Lesolle of the House of iZaura will be smiling all the way to Buckingham Palace in the United Kingdom as he has been selected to showcase his work on February 19th 2018. Lesolle was chosen alongside 52 other young designers from commonwealth countries last year October under the program dubbed ‘The Commonwealth Fashion Exchange.’
An ecstatic Lesolle explained how this was the biggest achievement of his career. Lesolle stated that their pieces were to be made of eco-friendly material and his ball gown, which is already in England, is entirely made from linen.
As it is an exchange program iZaura was paired with Quazi Design from Swaziland which makes fashion accessories and art pieces from recycled magazines. When speaking on his inspiration Lesolle stated that, “I am a feminist and believe in the empowerment and education of women, I believe certain western practices have left Africans disadvantaged.”Lesolle further explained that Botswana and Swaziland (his partner) had a lot of patriarchal practices which had little or no regards for women in society like body shaming and virginity testing on women prior to marriage without questioning the sexual history of the male counterparts. Through the power of education Lesolle feels women were later elevated to the same level as men.
Regarding the dress, Lesolle said that he opted for the color white to signify purity which will be adorned with red accessories by Quazi Designs to put emphasis on the HIV/AIDS scourge which is rampant in both Botswana and Swaziland and continues to affect their progression as nations. “The dress silhouette will celebrate both the small and curvaceous women; it’s a mermaid shape with a flared top skirt to make the bigger woman embrace her curves in a society that does not readily celebrate her body. A structured corset in the shape of a shield which symbolises the protection that the royal mother gives to her kingdom and it is symbolic to a lot of Africa Nations as they have used it to battle many fights. To complete the gown we created the queens crown by making a head gear that is beaded with beads by Quazi design,” stated Lesolle.
Both Quazi Designs and iZaura aim at changing the perception of recycled materials by developing innovative techniques combined with locally sourced environmentally friendly and waste material. Lesolle says he found it fitting to work with Quazi design as they both believe in empowering society especially women.
iZaura is involved in a lot of charity work that is aimed at empowering the girl child and women in general.
The ball gowns will be on display at Buckingham Palace on the set date and will be worn by mannequins during a gala dinner. They will proceed to be displayed in museum all over the United Kingdom until April 2018, where the designer will designer will decide what to do with their product.