The fashion show that marked the launchof the new fashion category in the annualPresident’s Day cultural competitionsfailed to live up to expectation. The show, whichwas attended by invite only, was held last Thursdayat Boipuso hall in Gaborone.A total of 20 designers from around the countryshowcased three garments each. For some ofthem, it was their fi rst showing ever. The show attractedpeople from across all age groups and thisevoked mixed reactions.Speaking to Time Out, one of the attendantswho did not want to be named expressed herdisappointment in the work that was exhibitedsaying “Iyo!
I have never seen so much Germanprint in my life! Some of the clothes on the rampwere not pleasing to the eye at all. I don’t knowif it was because the designers lack talent or theyhaven’t been exposed to the trends in fashion.And because of the fact that all the designers whoshowcased their work were from all corners of thecountry, this raises the question of whether we stilllag behind in talent and creativity when it comesto fashion in Botswana.”The organizers of the show however, had a differentopinion. Representative of the Fashion DesignTeam that went on a nationwide tour to selectthe fi nal 20 participants of the competition, GorataMubu said “the show went very well, especiallylooking at the fact that it was the fi rst one of itskind.
Any mistakes that we might have made towardsthe organization will certainly be correctedin the next one . But so far the fashion designteam, the designers, the models, the department ofArts and Culture and everybody else involved ishappy.”Quizzed about the negative response from someof the audience, Mubu said; “The people whowere unhappy with the show are people who haveprobably been to bigger shows than this with internationalartists on the entertainment lineup. Butthey have to understand that this time around thiswas something different. The work they saw onthe ramp was from people who lived different lifestylesin different parts of Botswana so of courseit won’t be the same. But in any case, constructivecriticism is always good, and we welcome it.”Clad in all-black décor, Boipuso Hall exhibitedglitz and glamour but the crowd was cold and unresponsive.
Taking to the stage for entertainmentwas jazz singer and member of Women of Jazztrio, Kearoma Rantao who only managed to movethe unresponsive audience with her lively secondand third performances.Popular house band, Team Distant, also gave athrilling and energetic performance to the delightof the younger audience. The master of ceremonyon the night, Benson Phuthego, whose tagline was‘This is Botswana,’ also entertained the audiencewith song and praise poetry.Former Big Brother Africa contestant and reigningMiss Tourism, Motamma Sesinyi attended theshow and had this to say; “This has been a greatinitiative by the government and I am honoredto be here to celebrate the creative minds of mycountry.”