Young Designers Competition 2024

Through the African Lens

The Allfashion Sourcing Young Designer Competition,


now in its seventh year. The competition offers young designers an opportunity to showcase their skillset through their interpretation of a design brief – put together by Cyril Naicker.


The competition is open to designers who are graduating this year or have recently graduated (in the past 5 years) or are currently part of a design internship program. The competition features prizes valued more than R270 000,00.

A R15 000,00 cash prize for the winner, as well as a Legal Business Toolkit/business start-up kit designed by legal practitioners from ENS valued at R250 000,00; and R5 000,00 for the runner up. The ENS Legal Business toolkit,which must be used in 18 months, includes the following:

1. Start Up Amplifier Guide which includes a “how to” legal guide for a small business looking to get started. The Guide introduces pertinent legal aspects for a small business to consider for the establishment and operation of the company. The “how to” guide includes a summary of various areas of legal regulation, among others, tax, foreign exchange, capital markets and financial regulation, corporate governance, labour and employment law, consumer protection, national credit, protection of information, information technology, intellectual property, project finance and Environmental Social Governance (ESG);


2. up to 10 hours of legal service, including consultation with specific attorneys, to tailor the selected agreements to the winner’s needs

3.   Basic contracts linked to the “Start Up Amplifier” Guide, being:

  • reciprocal confidentiality and non-disclosure agreement
  • standard employment agreement
  • intellectual property assignment agreement
  • website terms of use
  • e-commerce compliance checklist
  • website privacy policy
  • POPIA simplified guide
  • Sustainability/Environment Social Governance (ESG) Statement
  • Purpose driven memorandum of incorporation 

To enter, young designers work toward the design brief and if selected as a finalist design an on-trend, retail ready- o-wear look, that will inspire and align with a sustainable future.



Design Brief


In a world where global trends often lead South Africans to seek inspiration from European influences, this design brief encourages fashion design students to transcend the boundaries of imitation and delve into the vast realm of creativity Through the Lens of Africa. The challenge is to create a sustainable fashion collection that not only celebrates the rich heritage of local craftsmanship but also fosters a commitment to the environment, emphasizing the use of eco-friendly fabrics.


1. Cultural Preservation:

Explore the vibrant tapestry of sustainability by intertwining cultural preservation with contemporary fashion design. Showcase how traditional elements can seamlessly coexist with modern aesthetics.

2. Biodiversity Celebration:

Reflect the diverse and bountiful African landscapes in your design. Draw inspiration from local food sources and biodiversity to create a collection that not only looks visually appealing but also symbolizes the importance of preserving the planet's natural resources.


3. Eco-Friendly Fabrics:

Prioritize the use of eco-friendly fabrics in your collection. Dive into the world of sustainable materials that align with ethical and environmental considerations, showcasing how fashion can be both stylish and planet friendly.

4. Craftsmanship Showcase:

Highlight the significance of local craftsmanship in your designs. Let each piece tell a story of skilled artisans, traditional techniques, and the timeless beauty embedded in African craftsmanship.

5. Leather in an African Context:

Explore the use of leather within the context of African culture. Showcase its significance while considering sustainable practices and ethical sourcing, ensuring that the collection respects the environment and aligns with the values of cultural integrity.

6. Flora Fusion:

Immerse in the rich biodiversity of South Africa's rich foliage, blending indigenous plants and vibrant greenery into contemporary fashion designs, highlighting the harmony between nature and style.



▪ Take us on a visual journey showcasing your design process. Include photographs, fabric swatches, and any other elements that provide insight into the genesis of your designs.

▪ Explain how you arrived at each design choice, emphasizing the fusion of tradition and innovation in your creative process.

▪ Demonstrate a thoughtful selection of eco-friendly fabrics, providing a narrative that goes beyond style, highlighting their cultural and environmental importance.


▪ Sustainable fashion collection inspired by the African Lens.

▪ Design portfolio showcasing the design process, fabric options, and prints.

▪ A detailed explanation of the cultural and environmental significance embedded in each design choice.

▪ Emphasis on a harmonious narrative that sustains both tradition and the planet.

Challenge your creativity and imagination to their limits, unveiling the vast reservoir of inspiration that Africa offers.


Phase one


Entries Open: 21 May 2024
Entries Close: 10 July 2024

Our focus is to understand who you are.

Please can you submit the following:

• A motivation statement of no more than 500 words stating your knowledge of designing with the African Lens in mind.
What does this mean to you?

Judging criteria: Points allocated to understanding the brief in their communication. TDid they understand the brief?

Please design a garment with the following in mind:

1. Efficient design to minimise waste.
2. Show us methods in which mending, and repairing have been used.
3. No denim must be used in any of your designs or outfits or accessories.
4. Design towards a slower future

Judging criteria: points allocated to meeting all 4 elements.



Mood Board

Provide us with a mood board that defines you as an African Designer.

Judging criteria: Points allocated in their visual interpretation.



Illustration & Technical Drawing

A4 Garment drawing front and back of your garment. Your look can be suited for men/women/non-binary. Remember to include all design detail as well as all trims used and how you sourced these trims.

Keep in mind once again, designing towards a slower future.

Judging criteria: are any trims and design detail used that don’t comply with slow fashion?


Phase two

The semi-final selection takes place between 10 to 19 July 2024

Entries Close: 10 July 2024

You will be notified by the Young Designers Competition Organisers if you are qualified to move onto the next phase on the 22 July 2024.

The Young Designer Competition Organisers will then select your Technical Drawings and Fashion illustrations to come to life in Entry Element Three through the construction of your design.



Final Garment

Deadline: 4 September – delivery of Garments to MFSA Cape Town Offices.

1. Entry element three will allow for you to translate your thoughts, imagination, and concept into a final garment.

2. Don’t forget to reference your mood board as well as and your initial drawings/illustrations to ensure we see your vision from sketch to final garment.

3. Has all design details been maintained as per sketch in terms of trims etc.

Judging criteria: How close to the sketch is the final garment?

Has all design detail and trims been as close to original sketch and communication (written and illustrated?).


Final Showcase

Date: 11 September 2024

Venue: Cape Town International Convention Centre 2


You are required to create the runway look by providing your final design. Please include notes on hair and makeup, shoes, accessories, and overall look and feel to walk the runway.

The finals will be hosted live at the Allfashion sourcing event taking place at the CTICC on the 11 September 2024.

The finals will be filmed and reshared on Allfashion sourcing social media platform as well as media platforms.

The Young Designer Finals will consist of ten finalists who will showcase their designs on the runway at the AllFashion Sourcing Event. This will be followed by a Trend Talk – as this is taking place the Top 3 will be selected and called back to the runway after which the runner-up will be announced followed by the winner announcement.


These Terms and Conditions ("Terms") manage the relationship among all participants of the Young Designers Competition, Messe Frankfurt SA (Pty) Ltd ("Organizer"), and Cape Town Fashion Council ("CTFC").


1. Participant Consent: By participating, entrants agree to allow the Organizer’s usage of their designs and additional submission materials for promotional and related purposes.

2. Participant Liability: All participants accept all risk and responsibility linked with their participation in this competition and the usage of their submitted designs.

3. Design Alteration: Once the design is submitted, no alterations or changes are allowed.

4. Professionalism: Expected from all participants throughout the competition process. Failure to maintain professionalism may result in disqualification.

5. Regulation Compliance: Compliance with all rules and regulations for the competition is mandatory. Non-compliance may lead to disqualification.

6. Personal Expenses: All participants must bear any expenses related to the competition, including the costs of creation, development, and submission of their designs, and travel and accommodation unless specified otherwise.


1. Prize Grant: The competition winner ("Recipient") is eligible for a monetary reward of R15 000,00 and will also win the Legal Business Toolkit/business start-up kit designed by legal practitioners from ENS, to be used within 18 months or the prize falls away; the competition runner up will win R5 000,00 cash.


1. Liability Limitation: The Organizer, CTFC are not liable for any costs related to the creation or delivery of the Recipient's showcase. The fashion shows are shared, meaning the Recipient will present alongside other designers.


1. Decisions: The judges' decision is final and binding. No discussions regarding this decision will be entertained after the winners' announcement.

2. Loss or Damage: The Organizer will not be held responsible for any loss or damage to entry garments during the competition, though due care will be exercised.

3. Prizes: The competition prizes are fixed and cannot be negotiated.

4. Rights: The competition organizers reserve the right to disqualify any participant found violating the rules or engaged in any misconduct.

5. Terms & Conditions Changes: The organizers hold the right to alter these Terms and Conditions at any given time without any prior notification.

6. Travel and Accommodation: Participants must manage and finance their travel and accommodation for the Cape Town event unless otherwise stated.


1. Liability Limitation: The Organizer, CTFC and any of their associated companies, directors, officers, professional advisors, employees, and agencies will not be held responsible for: (a) any late, lost,

misrouted, garbled or distorted or damaged transmissions or entries; (b) any event disruptions, losses or damages caused by events beyond the control of the Promoter; or (c) any printing or typographical errors in any materials associated with the competition.

2. Indemnity: By participating in the competition, each participant agrees to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless the Organizer, CTFC against any and all claims, losses, damages or liabilities, including attorneys' fees, stemming from or relating to their participation in the competition or acceptance or usage of the Prize.

By entering this competition, participants confirm they have read, understood, and agree to these Terms and Conditions.

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