Arts & Leisure

Top designer sets goals sky-high

Chris Theko

Lesotho’s street wear fashion designer Katiso Tsoho is one of the most sought-after designers in the country

He established a clothing line in November 2018. However, he says he had never imagined himself as a fashion designer with a high quality clothing line that is greatly in demand. 

Joachim garments is a street wear clothing line that was founded by this self-taught fashion enthusiast. 

Tsoho says his upbringing was not a glamorous one but one vested on the simplicity of a family that lives from hand-to-mouth. 

“I did not always have everything I wanted growing up, nothing was easy at all so there were pretty much struggles of life here and there” Tsoho says.

“I never thought I would be a designer at all, I have always thought I would be in sciences and mathematics because in high school I was that guy who was always good with sciences” he recalls.

He says it was only later in his life in particular when he got to tertiary that he started having the love for fashion.  Tsoho says the love was sparked by his interest in dressing differently and that sparked a thought in him that he could dress himself up.

“I got to tertiary and you know how it can be, now you want to dress in a different way so that is what got me thinking of creating my own clothes and eventually realised I can do it for other people as well,” he says. 

“I got inspired by so many things but as far as I can remember, top of my list is Kanye West and Virgil Ablo, yes those are the people who inspired my fashion” he adds.

He said he looks up to people like Jerry Lorenzo who is an American fashion designer who founded the American luxury street wear label ‘Fear of God’. 

For him, the fashion industry appeals to him the most as it is and open field which does not conform to some stereotypes of blue-prints and rules hence he can play around with ideas and come with whatever he wants. 

“Most times I just create whatever my mind tells me to because there are no boundaries so I can go anyhow I want and that’s the fun part about what I do” he prides.

Attributing his success in the industry to being a hard-worker and a very persistent person, Tsoho says he is one to never quit or leave a place without getting what he wants. 

He says the Lesotho fashion industry is now at a point where people even beyond our borders are beginning to take note of the industry’s existence. 

“We are at a time where people are starting to be open-minded about fashion and trends. Back in the days when you dressed different people would call you names but now people understand that fashion has no boundaries.

“I am very proud and humbled by all the people I have had the opportunity to dress, famous or not I think they all appreciate the different horizon of our fashion and the different way of what fashion is,” he says, adding that his clothing label was part of the Vodacom Lesotho local brands and threads competition.

The competition was for clothing labels where the general public voted through social media from September to December 2020 and he came out in second position. 

He said the competition brought the much-needed exposure to every single brand and mostly for his brand adding that people who did not know him now know about his brand and his name. 

“People started noticing the brand even those who did not know about the brand, they started paying attention to the brand and we also got a lot more clients as a result of the exposure from the competition,” he concludes.

He says his vision is to see his brand grow bigger than where it is now to go beyond Lesotho and reach the entire African market and beyond as he says the sky is the limit.       

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