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We have our eight finalists for the 2015 ELLE Rising Star Design Awards in association with MRP… and eight unique and innovative collections in the making. While we wait in anticipation to see our finalists' collections, we get to know them a little better over the next four weeks. Today we chat to finalist, Alexia Hechter.


Tell us a little bit about yourself. 

I am currently studying at Elizabeth Galloway Academy of Fashion Design. I spend the majority of my time focusing on my studies and future, which I thoroughly enjoy. I’m a diligent worker, always striving to produce work that is at a standard I can be proud of.

Where did you hear about ELLE Rising Star? 

I have been hearing about ELLE Rising Star since I started getting interested in studying fashion design.

What is your collection about? 

WOL 'Ontwerp' is a loungewear/sleepwear range. The idea that I have for the range is to create a fully organic sleepwear range using strictly natural fabrics. My main focus when designing is comfort.

What inspired this collection? 

I find inspiration in the mornings, when I'm still wearing pajamas, drinking coffee outside on our farm in Mpumalanga or gazing at the view of the mountains from my balcony in Stellenbosch.

The fabric you will use includes?

The fabrics I plan to use are wool duvets, cotton knit, cotton rib blend, light weight wool, sheep leather off-cuts, bull denim, and wool.

How does your collection stand out? 

It stands out because I have chosen to do sleepwear. I have a different approach.

Describe one key piece in your collection. 

One of the key designs in my range is the poncho. I have acquired offcuts, that normally would be burned, and have used them to assemble the poncho. I use leather from different kinds of sheep, which will create an interesting texture.

Your favourite trend right now? 

One of my favourite trends is an elemental macro trend on WSGN (a fashion trend forecasting website). It is a duvet dressing trend.

You can't go a day without... 

Coffee and good music.

Who is your dream customer? 

Anyone who loves staying in pajamas.

South African designers on your radar? 

Jane Sews, Adriaan Kuiters, Non- European, Jenevieve Lyons, David Tlale and Marianne Fassler.

Your vision for your future label? 

I want to open a small store in Chrissiesmeer, Mpumalanga as soon as possible. I aim to make a commercial sleepwear range to sell in local stores.

Stay tuned as we introduce our next 2015 ELLE Rising Star finalist on Monday! 

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