Creative director, conceptual model and stylist Silvanus Ndiweda, aka ‘Kati the cotton eater’, is undeniably making a mark in the Namibian fashion scene with his unique crazy vintage style, which makes him Namibia’s first cotton eater.
Cotton eater is a name created by South African rapper Ricky Rick for those with an appetite for consuming new fashion, as they believe that ‘drip’ is the ultimate representation of who they are.
Getting inspiration from the rapper, Kati brought the style in the country, which is currently becoming everybody’s favourite.
‘’To me, cotton eating is a way of life, a dressing sense that defines a certain unique lifestyle; it’s a continuous state of mind,’’ he stated.
Born and bred in the dusty streets of Okuryangava, Windhoek, the cotton eating sense of fashion started as a hobby; however, as he started turning heads wherever he went, he decided to turn the hobby into a part-time career.
“Coming from a disadvantaged background makes me feel like everything I do is an achievement because not a lot of my brothers and sisters from Okuryangava got the opportunity to do what I do,” he said, adding that his journey to where he is now was bumpy, but dedication and hard work saved him.
At the moment, Kati’s style is flourishing in the fashion industry, with celebrities such as Top Cheri, Exit and ML becoming his regular customers.
He said: ‘’People whom I style always refer me to other people who are taking my brand to new levels. My style is different; I rock anything that has people turning their heads – anything that has people wondering ‘what is this man wearing?’ My style is smart, urbanand casual,’’ he further explained.
Asked where he gets his out-of-the-ordinary type of clothes from, Kati said apart from getting some vintage outfits from his dad and uncles’ wardrobes, he sources some pieces from foreign countries, while others are from thrift shops.
“I got into vintage fashion by paying close attention to how the older generations seemed so confident in the new age. I figured that style is in the hidden detail, and they felt good because they knew they looked good regardless of the times,” he narrated.
Being a brother to Koxa of the Tuko and Koxa musical duo, Kati said he also highly contributed to his brand, as he was always surrounded by musicians.
Talking about his future plans, Kati wants to build a solid foundation in his motherland before he takes his brand to the world.