Connect with us

Snapshots

Studio 05 House of Fashion: Cecilia Mungofa

Fashionistas take an innovative approach to education – and revitalise the rag trade in the process.

Juliet Pitman

Published

on

Cecilia Mungofa of Studio 5 House of Fashion

South Africa’s clothing industry may be under threat but this was no deterrent to Cecilia Mungofa when she set out to start Studio 05 House of Fashion. “Quite the contrary. It made me want to do something to revive the industry,” says the stylish and statuesque businesswoman. “I knew that the best way to do that was through education, so my vision was to establish an educational institution that would develop the fashion talent of tomorrow.” Cecilia started the company with sons Nashville and Bruno, setting up shop in Rosebank’s vibrant fashion hub, which is home to rag trade icons like Sun Goddess and Stoned Cherrie.

“We started with little more than a room, a few tables and a white board, but what we did have was skills,” says Cecilia, who spent her career in the fashion industry working her way up in afactory from marker to designer. “Bruno came with web design skills and Nashville had been in advertising, so together with my knowledge of fashion, we were good to go,” shesays.

Early years

The initial “marketing campaign” –handing out flyers at traffic lights and running ads in local community newspapers– yielded a small inaugural class of part-time students. “But we quickly realised that we needed to include year-long courses in our offering so that we could be assured of regular monthly fees. To our short courses we added certificate and finally diploma qualifications,” says Cecilia. Doing so allowed the school to cover two bases: the part-time market made up predominantly of older students or those in corporate employment, and the full-time market of young students wanting a fashion career.

Getting the edge

One of the first things parents ask is how long the school has been going for. People want to know that the qualification they are paying for is worth something. A related consideration is whether their qualification will get them a job. Students at Studio 05 can leverage the school’s relationships with top fashion houses to secure internships that provide them with work experience. “We have relationships with both Johannesburg-based fashion weeks, and we organise our own shows to give students a taste for what it takes to conceptualise, design, develop and showcase their own work,” says Cecilia.

A programme called Designer Solutions provides graduates with support, access to facilities and work opportunities.“Many graduates don’t get to follow their dream because they don’t have access to facilities or infrastructure to get going. Designer Solutions allows them to use our facilities and equipment for a very competitive rate. This gives them a chance to get their own operations up and running. And we put them in touch with the local fashion stores with whom we have relationships so that they can gain access to the market,” says Bruno. Studio 05 is also in negotiations with one of South Africa’s biggest clothing retailers. “Graduate designers would be able to pitch their design concepts and then we’d handle the production of the garments in-house as far as possible,” explains Cecilia. Young designers would there by build a portfolio of retail lines while still being free to start their own fashion businesses.

Looking externally

Cecilia’s vision may have started with education, but it’s evolved into something far more holistic. She has a finely-tuned sense of the state of the industry and clear ideas about how it can become a thriving and healthy sector. Where these ideas lead, Studio 05 House of Fashion follows. “One of the biggest problems facing the industry is that the seamstresses who once worked in our factories are nearing retirement age and there’s no one to take their place.

The Department of Labour needs to develop these skills so we’ve partnered with them to be the service provider,”she explains. Studio 05’s fee is paid for out of the National Skills Fund. “But it’s more than an income generator,” says Cecilia, “It means we have access to a much-needed skills base that our graduates can draw on when they start their own fashion businesses.”This macro view, along with the ability to make connections and bridge gaps, can only strengthen the business’s reputation in the industry, establishing the credibility required to become a leader.

  • Studio 05 House of Fashion
  • Player: Cecilia, Bruno and NashvilleMungofa
  • Est2004
  • Contact+2711 447 5552 or www.studio05.co.za

Juliet Pitman is a features writer at Entrepreneur Magazine.

Snapshots

Pat Pillai On How He’s Helped Over 5000 Entrepreneurs Using 3 Key Steps

Live free of the opinion of other, but always in service, is one of the key principles Pat Pillai lives by.

CEOwise

Published

on

By

ceowise-entrepreneur-magazine-thumbnail-design-pat-pillai

Pat Pillai, is a social entrepreneur who after being a national news anchor for 15 years, is founder and CEO of LifeCo UnLtd SA, which invests in impact entrepreneurs and impact enterprises. LifeCo UnLtd SA has benefited over 112 000 beneficiaries in SA (5000 are young entrepreneurs; 124 are established adult entrepreneurs, of those 76 are impact/social entrepreneurs).

Related: Mike Sharman Talks About Retroviral’s Successful Campaigns And The Importance Of Social Media In Marketing

Continue Reading

Snapshots

How Mark van Diggelen Pivoted To Create A Global Gaming Platform

“The day you stop getting enquiries about your product, you’re know you’re on the wrong track,” says Mark van Diggelen, CEO of GameZBoost.

CEOwise

Published

on

By

ceowise-entrepreneur-magazine-thumbnail-designs-mark-van-diggelen

Mark van Diggelen is the CEO of GameZBoost, they created a white label mobile gaming platform that is currently deployed in 45 countries around the world. In addition, Mark’s mobile gaming tournaments have taken the industry by storm.

 

Related: Eben Uys Shares His Concept Behind Mad Giant Brewery And How You Can Make Your Business Stand Out In A Crowd

 

Continue Reading

Snapshots

Regine Le Roux Shares Why You Need To Be Proactively Managing Your Reputation

How and why you should be proactively manage your reputation and why it has nothing to do with marketing or PR.

CEOwise

Published

on

By

ceowise-entrepreneur-magazine-thumbnail-designs-regine-le-roux

Regine Le Roux is founder of Reputation Matters, and she has been looking after company’s reputations for over a decade. Regine also published her first book aptly titled ‘Reputation Matters’ the building blocks to becoming the business people want to do business with.

Related: Vuyo Tofile Of EntBanc Group Talks About Finding Solutions And Partnering To Offer The Most Value

Continue Reading
Advertisement

SPOTLIGHT

Advertisement

Recent Posts

Follow Us

Entrepreneur-Newsletters
*
We respect your privacy. 
* indicates required.
Advertisement

Trending