5 Minutes with Nicole Smith

remake design challenge nicole smith

Meet Nicole Smith, Remake Design Challenge FASHION finalist, who is in her 2nd year at CPUT. We find out what makes this coffee obsessed fahsion design student tick and discover what inspired her “TRANSPARENCY” capsule collection.

If your collection had a theme song, what would it be?

Rabbit heart by Florence and the Machine (SLOF- MAN n JOR-MAN dubstep remix).

One thing we need to know about you as a designer?

I like my clothes to have a wow factor. My designs don’t have an over the top aesthetic however I know when a person sees my clothes and are like ‘Wow! Where did you get that?’ I’ve know I’ve reached my goal when it comes to my design.

I can’t start my day without…


You are currently obsessed with?

COFFEE!!! and textured fabrics.

Name one designer you would most like to meet?

Gert Johan Coetzee.

If you could dress any celeb for a red carpet event, who would it be?

Jennifer Lawrence.

My own style is…

Slightly grunge, slightly girly. A mix of the two.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

To be myself and be confident about my work.

Tell us a little more about your ’TRANSPARENCY’ collection. What inspired you?

I was inspired by retro prints specifically the seventies. I don’t think that my clothing belongs to a particular style it takes a little bit of everything; grunge, chic, preppy etc.

 What challenges have you experienced by adhering to the competition principles of using sustainable design techniques?

Deciding on which sustainable design technique was rather challenging since each technique was rather challenging to make use of. I felt that making use of up-cycling would be the best choice for me since one of the first items of clothing I made was a sleeveless jacket which was made from old jeans. Even though up-cycling was something I had done before, finding the right fabrics from soft furnishings that suited the garments was rather challenging as well.

What’s on your horizon?

This competition has opened my eyes to how much I actually enjoy creating clothing, so I’m planning on interning and working in as many aspects of the industry as possible and getting to know all aspects of the industry as well as people in it, and from there I’d like to make use of these contacts and knowledge that I’ve gained and use it to build my brand as a designer. With being a finalist for the Live Eco Remake Design Challenge on my CV I think I already have an advantage.

What excites you?

Fashion excites me. Fabric excites me. Anything that moves me to want to create things, not just clothing, excites me.

How do your friends describe you?

Crazy, straight forward. ( Sometimes too straight forward)!

What is your most treasured piece in your wardrobe?

My platform black and gold heels. I wore them to my matric ball and they’re my go-to pair of heels when I dress up and want to look extra good when I go out!

Top tip when it comes to sustainable design?

Do what you feel comfortable with. Don’t try techniques you have no idea about. Also, think about our kids and their kids, you want look back in retrospect and feel good about what you contributed to their future.




Vote for Nicole as your favourite designer & win with vida e caffè 

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