In SLA contributor Kendi Sapepa’s last article the stylist profession was explored. What would be better than to follow up with an actual stylist?
Botswana’s Tsholo Dikobe has put her country on the map through her artistic and creative nature. Tsholo has recently been nominated for the Abryanz Style and Fashion Award, in the ‘Best Dressed Celebrity’ category.
Kendi recently had a chat with the renowned stylist, award-winning fashion writer, and curator
Hello, Tsholo, please tell our readers a little more about yourself?
I’m from Botswana and on the Voice On Fashion column in The Voice Newspaper, I give an overall forecast of the world of fashion.
Furthermore, together with my partner, Gaone Mothibi, we feature established and upcoming local talent from in and around Botswana, and also around Africa and the world.
How did you get into styling?
Growing up, when words failed me, I spoke fluent volumes with my clothes. I grew up knowing that I had a special relationship with clothes because I wore them quite differently and uniquely all the time. When it was civic day at school, I was always the centre of attention!
Fast forward to my early university days, I started dancing and working with some of Botswana’s top musicians and artists. My love for dancing required great costumes on stage, and looking the part. I was always invested in how we’d execute our looks on stage and how the final presentation will be received by the masses. This is how my styling career started.
You call yourself a Fashion Artist, please tell us a little more about that title.
I do any and everything pertaining fashion. I believe the world of fashion is my oyster. Also, I document and report about the world of fashion for the biggest and followed fashion column in Botswana, The Voice On Fashion.
I blog about my fashion experiences and life at The Khoi-fro. In addition, I style renowned musicians and public figures in Botswana. I direct shoots for advertorials and more! Hence the term fashion artist. It’s a million fashion things in one.
Please explain to us what your job entails? How does it works? What are the day to day activities etc?
The world of fashion is an exciting yet disrupting pursuit. It’s exciting in the sense that no day is the same. You get to experience networking with great people and icons in the field and learn so much.
Moreover, styling people is a great joy. From being responsible for how a person looks at themselves after you have styled them —the feeling is always great. The visible inner dialogue change that you get to experience with a client is a fulfilling feeling.
From a technical aspect, I organise photos shoots, co-ordinate shoot outfits and develop a creative communication. Moreover, I develop a fashion trend report or fashion calendar for upcoming fashion seasons.
You get to be responsible for deciding the creative influence and direction of a trend/product. There’s also supervising the work of photographers, models, clients, for a high end fashion editorial.
Would you say that your field is fairly easy to get into?
It is, but what you need far beyond anything else is passion and dedication.Tsholofelo Dikobe: The world of fashion is an exciting, no day is the same. Click To Tweet
Are there other avenues someone could take with your experience?
The world of fashion has many fields. There is the business side of fashion which involves fashion entrepreneurship and management.
For the business-minded people, one can get into retailing, buying or merchandising. You have to know your area of interest and act accordingly.
Often, some companies will encourage lesser known people and newcomers to work for free, however offer experience and exposure, what is your take on this?
I believe there is an entry level to any career or profession. But the entry level should come with a monetary incentive.
An entry level does not mean exposure. Exposure in my books just means it is unpaid work, which is daylight robbery.
What would your advice be to people who are looking to get into styling?
Learn and know the history of your craft. Identify a gap and creatively close it.
Where can people see your work?
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