Thandiwe Tembo, a fashion designer and engineer in the making, says , “School should not be a barrier to other things people want to do but rather be used as a starting point for one to achieve their dreams,”Thandiwe Tembo, a fashion designer and engineer in the making, says , “School should not be a barrier to other things people want to do but rather be used as a starting point for one to achieve their dreams,” A Zambian local fashion designer Thandiwe Tembo says school should not be a barrier to one’s development and fulfilment of their talents.
Thandiwe, who is also a third year engineering student at the University of Zambia (UNZA) says school should be used to develop a person’s talent and not limit their creativeness.
“School should not be a barrier to other things people want to do but rather a starting point for one to achieve their dreams,” she notes.
Thandiwe says she has a passion for both engineering and fashion designing, but further notes that engineering will just be a base she will use to build her fashion designing empire by giving her the much needed finance.
“My passion is not only engineering, in fact, fashion designing has always been my number one hobby. I would say engineering will just one of the modes I will use to finance my fashion empire. I want to run my own clothing line, and I will not make use of my degree, but my talent,” she laments.
Thandiwe says that she started sketching her own designs in 2009 when she was still in High school. She later started sewing her own designs in 2011.
“I started thinking of doing my own clothing designs after I noticed most of the tailors were failing to get my designs right. They just couldn’t get my concept, kind of irritating if you ask me,
“Thus I discovered the only way to do it was by learning the skill, the art of fashion. Whatever design I envision in my mind, I could now put it on paper and later have a full design,” Thandiwe says.
When asked how she manages school and designing at the same time, Thandiwe says, “It is all about determination and discipline. You just have to divide your time wisely and make sure to do the right thing at the right time.”
“I make sure all my school work is up to date during the week. I have reserved the weekends for designing and not forgetting church,” she smiles as she explains.
Thandiwe has for the past two years been participating in Zambia fashion week, a platform for local designers to show case their designs. She says the Zambia Fashion Week has exposed her to different ideas and people from all walks of life.
“I have been participating in fashion week for the past two years and my clientele has really grown. People who own boutiques have even been approaching to supply them with my designs,” she adds.
Thandiwe hopes to own and run a boutique that will stock all her designs. She believes this will be possible by the end of next year, 2015.
Thandiwe tips ladies to always go for clothes that cover their body fully, as she puts it, ‘simplicity is always the best.’