A relative newcomer to the fashion scene Aune Alexander is absolutely part of a new generation of designers turning the country’s fashion industry into a powerhouse of creativity.
Entertainment Now! had a brief chat with the Windhoek-based designer on how she plans to navigate her creativity in the competitive but fast-growing industry.
Born in Okahao, Alexander mentioned she always loved fashion from a young age and her debut in the fashion scene did not come as a surprise.
“I enjoy looking presentable; it’s honestly just something I’m passionate about. I do not have someone who inspires my tailors, but I do have this belief that motivates me to work hard – and that is the fact that I am not where I want to be in life yet,” she said.
The phrase “I guess it’s in my blood” is heard a lot when an artist comes from a family of successful people.
Although her talent may have been ingrained in her DNA, she said becoming a designer was purely out of determination.
“I am very passionate about fashion; I always wanted something of my own within the fashion industry. I take inspiration from home – my family. I have seen certain individuals within my family work from nothing to something – and that motivates me to build something of my own too,” said the final year student at the University of Namibia.
While many fashion designers toil their way through fashion schools and colleges, Alexander did not have much in the way of formal education in fashion design.
The self-taught designer started expressing her talent for design during the lockdown last year.
She said:“While on lockdown, I was busy with my schoolwork; I thought to myself, I should work on something because after my assessments, I had nothing else to keep me busy. I then started designing clothes.”
The first garment she designed was of her birthday outfit, which received awe-inspiring comments on social media – and that ultimately led to her new label ‘A.Alexander’, which she launched in August last year.
Her clothing line focuses on designing and making timeless garments, which include unisex and traditional items with a touch of an urban street style. Inspired by her own tradition and culture, she also uses African traditional fabrics to construct custom-made, contemporary women and men’s wear. However, she describes her style as versatile.
“This is quite challenging, as I find it impossible to put it in one box. I am somebody who wears and designs everything and anything – and just makes it look diverse. I can make use of my first piece – the black overall I wore on my birthday. I knew I wanted an overall, but I didn’t want it to look like the usual overall that everyone is used to; hence, I made mine look a specific way by the collars,” narrated the soft-spoken stylist.
Alexander makes readily available clothes of different designs and sizes; however, she also works with orders – should a client want something similar and they find it sold out or not available in their size.
Apart from designing, the multifaceted creative said she is also a manicurist, and she makes paper flowers for décor.
“I want to believe I am really good with my hands,” she candidly mentioned.
Giving her thoughts on the local fashion fraternity, Alexander believes Namibia has potential talents that only need great exposure.
“My advice to aspiring designers would be to expose ourselves to the public. Advertise our work as much as we can. The greatest way of doing it these days is through social media,” she said. – firstname.lastname@example.org