Organisers Plan for a Bigger Batho Fashion Week Next Year

  • Founder Kayenda says the idea is to tap into the yet unexplored realm of fashion tourism and turn it into an economic powerhouse for Botswana


With the second edition of Batho Fashion Week that was held in the vibrant tourist haven of Kasane recently a roaring success, the organisers are planning for an even bigger and better show next year.

The fashion week brought a lively display of apparels and haute couture, as well as modelling talent and a focused discussion to fashion enthusiasts and the community of the Chobe District.

“We are making progress and are planning to show something different in every edition,” the Founder of the Fashion Week, Emmanuel Kayenda, told Time Out.

Everlasting impact

“For next year we expect more designers, models, collaborations and celebrities for a show that will leave an everlasting impact on the community of Kasane. We are building into the value chain to ensure that every area is catered for.”

Batho Fashion Week is not merely a celebration of fashion but an evolution towards economic diversification. Its mission is to tap into the yet unexplored realm of fashion tourism and turn it into an economic powerhouse for Botswana.

The annual event addresses the demand for diverse nightlife experiences that are currently limited to daytime safari activities in the picturesque setting of Kasane.

The brains behind it, Kayenda, is himself a model signed with Boss Models and a fashion director who works out of both Cape Town and Gaborone.

Positive ripple effects 

“The event is strategically hosted during the peak tourism season, ensuring increased tourist attraction, extended visitor stays and positive ripple effects for the local economy,” he said.

More than 70 people and 7 suppliers were involved in this year’s show. It featured a total of 12 designers, 6 of whom were foreigners.

It came to light during the show that Batho Fashion Week has signed a MoU with Windhoek Fashion Week whose director is none other than Luis Munana of the Young, Famous and African reality TV fame.

Premier fashion destination

Munana was present in Kasane where tourism minister Philda Kereng urged the organisers to tap into the power of fashion tourism and turn Botswana into a premier destination for fashion enthusiasts from across the globe.

Kayenda explained: “It was a successful two-day event that showcased six designers each day and featured a panel discussion that focused on building sustainable fashion brands.

“The panel featured Munana, BK Proctor of Collections by BK Proctor and Nora Mcaslin of Nora Cosmetics. The highlight of the discussion was the value chain in the creative industry and the challenges we face as creatives.”

Igniting passion in the youth  

He added that the idea is to help commercialise the talent in young people and ignite their passion for fashion. Students of home economics and art from Chobe Junior Secondary School also participated in the show.

Every year Batho Fashion Week donates stationery worth P10 000 to the school in support of the creative goals of such students. “We are trying to sensitise on the importance of the practical subjects to say they are not options but core subjects,” Keyenda noted.

“Our unique approach integrates traditional craftsmanship with contemporary fashion, promoting knowledge transfer and ensuring that our traditional wisdom in textiles is passed on to succeeding generations.”