BA Honours in Fashion: Putting 3 years of undergraduate knowledge accumulation into practice

posted on August 1st, 2018 by Lissa Leandro Correa Mendes

LISOF facilitated a meet and greet between 3rd year students and industry. The two minute interviews were inspired by speed-dating, to help break the ice and ignite a conversation for future communication. Students were able to chat to industry role players (hosts) from various fields such as fashion retail, design and media. 

“Not only was it a wonderful event but such a wonderful opportunity for us to meet the future fashion trendsetters. Very few (if any) educational institutes offer their students a unique opportunity to meet with future employers and I think what you have done for your students is really remarkable.” – Kylee Robertson, Commercial Manager, Media24 Lifestyle

The LISOF BA Honours in Fashion is a Post-graduate learning programme that will provide intensive and focused specialisation in Fashion. The course has been developed by leaders in fashion and retail with a view to giving you the most progressive and relevant education in the business. The focus of this programme is applied research (i.e. research in action) in order to solve real ‘problems’ that exist in the field (work integrated learning) If you are considering a strictly academic piece of research you will be allowed to pursue this avenue as well. Alongside building research capacity, this programme deepens a theoretical and practical understanding of your specialisation choice in Fashion. Work-Integrated learning is of utmost importance to this course therefore you will be exposed to retail partners to work a period of time with, to learn in the field knowledge. Selected students will receive a stipend while they intern at various fashion industry companies.

“An evening well spent at the LISOF Networking event. We were so impressed with the display of talent, passion and overall academic excellence of the students we engaged with. We are delighted to be partnering with an institution that mirrors our vigour an absolute enthusiasm in changing the face of fashion retail South Africa.” – Aisha Nakidien, Recruitment Consultant – Talent Acquisition at The Foschini Group

 Why the LISOF BA Honours in Fashion?
  • Deepens learner’s expertise in the discipline of fashion
  • Creates depth of learning
  • Creates a knowledge focus for the purpose of specialisation
  • Creation of new knowledge
  • Specialisation enhances the graduatedness of the learner and hence employability
  • High level theoretical engagement and intellectual independence
  • Focuses on complex problem solving abilities
  • Critical reflection of theory and practice
  • Facilitates knowledge transfer within the workplace
  • Knowledge transfer within and across disciplines
  • Higher order engagement
  • Critical and analytical abilities

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Fashion Business Studies

  • Critically evaluate retail practice
  • Researching real-world business constructs for the purpose of theory application
  • Opportunities to complete comparative analyses with business processes in other industries
  • Marketing and branding
  • Business models
  • Supply chain processes and relationships
  • Economic competitiveness
  • Product development practices
  • Reverse marketing
  • “Fitness for purpose”

Fashion Cultural Studies

  • An in-depth focus on the culturalisation of fashion at a philosophical level
  • The production of the own voice
  • Psychoanalysis of fashion
  • Perception and opinion
  • Marketing, culture and philosophy

Research Methodology

  • Fundamentals and principles of research
  • Research methods
  • Primary and secondary research
  • Qualitative versus quantitative analysis
  • Action research
  • Grounded in the world-of-work
  • Proposal presentation

Research Dissertation

  • Grounded in the institution where the student is placed
  • 2 elements to be considered:
    • What excites and interests the student
    • What adds value for the host institution
  • Research will focus on ethical practices with a focus on global trends that will add value to the host institution (practice)
  • Opportunity to engage with hosts and the process of knowledge transfer
  • “Putting 3 years of undergraduate knowledge accumulation into practice”

Here are some examples of 2018 topics for research by BA Honours students:

  • The psychological effect of costume in film on the viewer and what the process entails as a costume designer to achieve a possible response on a psychological level within the viewer.
  • Researching the modernisation of costumes within films and how fashion within period films are being conceptualised and therefore re-incorporated into current fashion trends. The reason being is to better understand the film industry as well as costume design for this is an interest of mine.
  • Fashion campaigns and the influence on South African consumerism
  • To examine the relationship between culture and buying of clothes.

CEO Shana Rosenthal with LISOF Alumna, Shayna Goncalves who was a the guest speaker at the BA Honours in Fashion meet and greet

Shana and several 3rd years

Academic Head, Ashleigh Cohen with Shana

Fashion Show Producer, Jan Malan with LISOF Alumna, Caileigh-Jayne Davis

The SA Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 18 Countdown: Looking at The Last 3 Years

posted on March 26th, 2018 by LISOF

Our countdown to SA Fashion week 2018 Autumn/Winter has begun, and the excitement is REAL! To get into the fashion festivities, let’s take a look back to what the designers of SA Fashion week brought to the runway in the last three years.

‘SA Fashion week is committed to developing excellence and growth in a sector that contributes significantly to the South African economy. We unearth, support, promote and nurture South African fashion talent.” Lucilla Booyzen- Founder of SA Fashion week


2015: Feathers, faux fur…Fabulous!

The designers of SA Fashion week 2015 Autumn/Winter collection brought an excellent combination of feathers, faux fur and sheer fabric into their signature looks.

Photo via W24

Left: Black lace corset under a faux fur coat. This look is paired with a feathered head piece, simple black heels and a round clutch. Simple make-up is a must with this bold look. Middle: Black lace over an all-black top and bottom with a feathered head piece. Right: Faux fur over a sheer white ensemble paired with black heels and black hat, accessorized with beady white necklace.

Chunky knits paired with denim definitely became a showstopper, as designers featured these looks on the runway. The chunky scarf added to a denim ensemble, ties the entire winter look together.

Photo via W24

Teal was the colour of choice for 2015 Autumn/Winter. The beautiful colour was often paired with bold prints for a truly feminine winter appearance. Everything about this look captures a designer’s heart. The above the knee skirt paired with blue pumps gives this look a feminine finish.

Photo via W24

2016: Printed Patterns For The Unexpected Silhouette

Geometric patterns, artfully printed; allows for an unexpected and perfect silhouette. The designers of the 2016 SA Fashion week autumn/winter collection gave a whole new twist on fashion. 2015’s emergence of sheer was once more incorporated into the looks that walked the 2016 runway.

SA Fashion Week 2016 Autumn/Winter top designers included House of Olé, Ephymol, Amanda Laird Cherry, Rubicon, Mantsho (Palesa Mokubung) Colleen Eitzen and Clive Rundle. A special was the Gert-Johan Coetzee which was available on to shop on Spree straight off the runway.

Photo via

Designers incorporated jewel tones such as green, brown, red and blue, to give the perfect autumn/winter feel. The sheer fabric casts the perfect silhouette.

A geometric inspired print for matching top and bottom pieces became the ultimate ‘cosy’ winter look. Large folded collars and oversized sleeves made an inspiring appearance, especially as paired with the geometric print.

Photo via

Adding a pop of colour to the black and white geometric inspired print makes this look come to life!

2017: Untamable Street Style

Last year included a host of young and ambitious designers including Ageo by Arnold Phasa, Danielle Frylinck, I Just Am, Ipikoko, Turner Studio, Kentse Masilo, Liu Liu and Mmusomaxwell. They took to the bold look with strong graphic prints. For Mieke’s collection, they were paired with printed lycra leggings and a simple white headpiece which took the runway by storm.

Photo via

Street style was another inspiration for the 2017 SA Fashion week autumn/winter collection. The streets of South Africa were definitely painted chic!

Photo via

Through the past three years, designers have reimagined the way we see fashion. Each year South African designers push their limits to produce the unimaginable and recreate their meaning of fashion. There is no doubt that South African designers of 2018 SA Fashion Week will raise the bar once more…

The Best of Paris Haute Couture Week

posted on February 1st, 2018 by LISOF

All things beautiful and handcrafted, Paris Haute Couture Week has come and gone, leaving us breathless and lusting after high fashion pieces. From Christian Dior to Maison Margiela, we’ve also been inspired to take our design aesthetic to a whole new level. Check out some of our top moments below…


We expected all the usual elegance from this classic design house, known for their tweed and well tailored suits. This year, we also saw the addition of a short suit (groundbreaking!) and some bright pleats. Floral appliqué was everywhere and the finale was a truly breathtaking all white feathered tuxedo-meet-ballgown.

Photo via Vogue Runway

Maison Margiela

High shine, but not with the usual sequin sparkle. Light reflecting plastic and holographic overcoats shone on for this show, with a futuristic treatment applied to beautiful garments. It’s the well-loved Margiela magic, and we’re so here for it.

Photo via Vogue Runway

Iris Van Herpen

In a way that only she can, Van Herpen did the extraordinary and un-thinkable, creating waves in mid air. Delicate mesh dresses were covered in 3-D printed elements, creating a futuristic aesthetic with a heavy influence from the natural elements.


With multi-textured floor length gowns, in black or with tiered coloured skirts, Givenchy looked to shapes and silhouettes. There was a clear emphasis on fabrics, which allowed beautiful pieces to catch the light.

Photo via Vogue Runway

Christian Dior

A simple mostly black and white colour palette, with anything-but-simple designs. Well made suits in a rich satin and a polka dotted tulle dresses were among the 72 looks on show.

Photo via Vogue Runway

Welcome LISOF Class of 2018!

posted on January 31st, 2018 by LISOF

You know how it goes…new year, new opportunities!

LISOF has opened for 2018, and already we’re been off to a great start. This year, we’re focusing on finding brilliant talent, innovative creativity and an exciting event to showcase the best local and international design (more on that soon!)

After the success of our 2017 Fashion Show (and a well-deserved summer break) we’re ready to get our creative juices flowing, and get stuck into the year. Our new year registration is underway, and with our First Year Orientation, we showcase just what we do here. Along with the buzz of new students creating the absolute most out of recycled materials, there were new friends being made and only a little bit of (healthy) competition.

The winners ! #fashionshow #lisof2018 #lisoforientation

A post shared by LISOF (@lisof_fashion) on

Our highlights included a Calvin Klein inspired logo band on incredible drop-crotch, plastic bag trousers and some serious flare with a Lady LISOF outfit. Overall, the standard was high and ensured that all students got a feel for campus life at LISOF.

It’s safe to say, we’ve got a feeling that this year is going to be a good one. Stay tuned to our Instagram, Twitter and Blog for more news to come!

Congratulations LISOF Fashion Show 2017 Winners

posted on December 5th, 2017 by LISOF

Pitsi Kewana: Best Commercial 3rd year Range

What was the name of your collection and why?

The collection was called “Dr Jekyll & Ms Bloom”, and it was based on the idea of two personalities living in one person, but unlike Dr Jekyll & Mr Hide who were at odds with each, Dr Jekyll & Ms Bloom work in synergy & bring out the best in each.

Why did you select the fabrics you did?

I really wanted to draw on the historic tailoring elements that are inspired by Dr Jekyll. I wanted to use modernized tailoring & play with pattern-making principles to create new shapes & silhouettes. Using fabrics like Melton & suiting helped create shape & structure, and that was balanced with softer fabrics, like satin & cotton voile, to bring in elements of the Ms Bloom personality.

What finishes made your collection different?

There are certain elements that I really loved. From the accordion-type pleating in the sleeve of my 3rd look, to the deep pleats in the jacket of my last look. I think the application of tailoring principles really brought the collection together & made it look clean & luxurious.

What do you plan to do next year?

I’m hoping to get a job in fashion, possibly doing buying, and also working on my own range. I’m looking to enter either AFI Fasttrack or SAFW and see what happens from there. Mainly I just want to continue doing what I love – & that is making beautiful clothes for beautiful people.



Michola Sahlertz- Best Artisan 3rd year Range

What was the name of your collection and why?

The name of my Collection is ‘Nature Reclaimed’ -Manmade Structures that are abandoned and nature takes over them. And my sub-theme is ‘Origami’. The idea behind my range is that we as humans cannot exist without nature, even when we tear nature apart, it will still take over and in the end, we can only value the part nature plays in our lives. Bringing colour and joy to our everyday life.

Why did you select the fabrics you did?

I used suiting to bring in the structure and stability of ‘man-made’ objects and used cotton voile as well as mesh to showcase the softer, more inorganic side to how nature takes over. I used these fabrics in a neutral colour palette of navy, grey and white to also emphasise structure and the rigidness of man-made ideals.

What finishes made your collection different?

The finishes I used were the 1400 handmade felt flowers-all in different colours- progressing more and more in the pieces as the range develops. With the last piece being made up of only felt flowers and mesh.

What do you plan to do next year?

I am looking into starting my own business next year, but will be working part-time at local designers to gain more experience and to learn from those wiser than me.



Juanie Ferreira – Overall Winner

What was the name of your collection and why?

Unfolding structure. Rules are usually put in place as a way and means of providing structure. However, this collection is a metaphor for my design process, where experimentation with bending the rules unfolded into new possibilities of innovation. In terms of aesthetics, the collection is strong and structural, in combination with folds and drapes.

Why did you select the fabrics you did?

The fabrics that I selected were certainly unconventional. I revel in exploring the unknown and the unconventional and in so doing, ensuring that I do not limit my creativity, keeping it innovative. The combination of the various textures of the curtaining voiles, waffle weave toweling, ramie linen and stretch cotton viscose made my designs come to life. The voiles were also selected for its transparent property.

What finishes made your collection different?

I played around with design elements by, for example, exposing pocket bags and making them subtle features in stead of hiding them, such as tailored jet pockets that were constructed into and becoming part of soft folds. Some details were exaggerated, shifting it from functional to decorative, such as trouser pockets extending to the hemline. I payed close attention to construction details and quality, by finishing off exposed seams and hems with binding. There was also a LOT of hidden handwork involved in the finishing off of the final garment.

What do you plan to do next year?

I will continue to pursuing a career in design and position myself in a place where I am doing what I love every day.



The future of fashion takes to the catwalk

posted on November 25th, 2017 by LISOF

LISOF, Africa’s most progressive fashion design and retail education institution, is presenting its 23rd annual fashion show on 23 November 2017. The event also marks the 10th anniversary of the school’s Pretoria campus.

“Nobody with an interest in the future of fashion can afford to miss this show,” says Shana Rosenthal, CEO and founder of LISOF. “Our students are working on the cutting-edge of design, and the industry is sure to sit up and take note of the talent on show this year.”

The first-year design students will showcase a collective range called Afrique Nouveau. Second-year students took their inspiration from global and local issues with their theme of Urban Refugees. The third years were given free rein to draw on their personal journeys and come up with creations that reflect individual themes.

The LISOF fashion show takes place in Pretoria’s trendy industrial chic 012 Central. “We couldn’t have asked for a venue that fits any better with our brand and our students’ talents,” says Rosenthal. “The atmosphere and ambiance will be the perfect backdrop for the style and standard of design that set our learners apart from their counterparts.”

Adding to the style and glamour is the contribution from regular LISOF fashion show sponsors MAC and ghd. As in previous years, these brands will ensure that the models’ hair and make-up complement and enhance the skill and artistry of the garments they wear.


“Registration for next year’s courses is open now, hence the fashion show is a great opportunity for prospective students and their parents to get a taste of what we offer,” says Rosenthal.

LISOF presents short courses, higher certificates, bachelor degrees and a BCom Fashion degree, the only qualification of its kind in South Africa.

LISOF’s degrees in fashion and retail are well sought after in the industry, and its alumni can be found in key fashion and retail positions across the world, working in disciplines that ranges from design to marketing, styling to buying, and merchandising to photography.

LISOF x Tammy Taylor MRS SA COLLABORATION – Engineered Denim

posted on November 18th, 2017 by LISOF

by Caileigh Jayne Davis

LISOF has the reputation of being the most progressive fashion design school and retail education institution in Africa. Our alumni populate fashion and retail environments throughout the world and our degrees in fashion are well sought after in the industry. Being at the educational forefront means that LISOF doesn’t follow the crowd but leads it, whether it is through education or tackling hard topics like sustainability in fashion and shining light on to reengineering fast fashion.

A first of its kind in fashion, LISOF and Tammy Taylor Mrs SA have collaborated to create amazing ball gowns from recycled and pre-loved denim which the Finalist donated themselves. This collaboration brings to light the importance of sustainability, these one of a kind pieces will be worn by woman who showcase that being a pageant finalist is more than what people think, Tammy Taylor Mrs SA is a movement that shines the torch on real women. Real women with real lives, real curves and real problems.

With sustainability being a topic of the zeitgeist this collaboration will bring the importance of re-engineered fashion to the public domain, allowing LISOF to showcase the importance of sustainability in particular to reengineering denim and how we as a community can combat recycling in a fun and fashionable way.

Upcycling is an international trend aimed at decreasing wastage and supporting sustainable lifestyle practices. In the fashion industry, upcycling is being employed to transform old stock inventory into reengineered garments with a ‘slow-fashion’ appeal. Each garment that will be seen at the Tammy Taylor Mrs SA Pageant, has been designed specifically for the finalist wearing it, showcasing how a fast fashion pieces of clothing can be stripped back to is raw fabric and a designer garment created from this.

In the 21st century it is everyone’s responsibility to understand the importance of sustainability and do something about it. This collaboration is a step-in educating the public on the importance of understanding where your clothing is made LISOF CEO, Shana Rosenthal says that LISOF’s Reengineered Denim project wants to place the sustainability of fashion in the limelight. “LISOF has made it its mission to educate consumers on reengineered fashion. Just because you bought a jacket or pair of denim pants last year, doesn’t mean it can’t be this season upcycled denim reengineered designer must have garment.”

The months of hard work by our design team at LISOF Adriaan van Dyk and Balki Yaheda paid off when the finalists took the ramp on the night of the show. The crowd cheered, the ladies strutted and we were so proud of the designs, the hard work that went into this project and the topic of sustainably that was at the for front of the conversation.

Journey of ‘The Future Consumer’

posted on November 9th, 2017 by LISOF

by Artho Eksteen


Fashion and trends are two totally intertwined concepts that are impossible to function without the integral link between them. Trends are repeatedly influencing the fashion industry, while the fashion industry is simultaneously creating and amplifying new trends. This is not just applicable for the fashion industry but also other creative fields or companies wishing to establish a brand with impact, resonance and relevance.

WGSN is one of the leading trend establishments in the world. They combine cutting edge technology with the creativeness of the human mind to capture and make available deep insights into the passionate creative world. The WGSN conference “The Future Consumer” held in Cape Town on 9 November 2017,  continued to build on this reputation and provided a great opportunity to listen, learn, reflect and engage.

The WGSN speakers provided a global insight on how to adapt your brand to attract the future consumer. The conference featured a mix of international and local speakers, each with their unique perspective. Andrea Bell and Lisa White from WGSN discussed ideas such as emotions, how to implement this into your brand and how this is taking effect on a global scale.


The local guest speakers included Duncan McLennan and Michael Leslie from the Cape Town based creative agency ANDPEOPLE, and Brain Mtongana from Woolworths provided insight on the future of the South African brand and consumer. Other guest included multimedia and visual artist Trevor Stuurman and head of collaboration from Adidas, Luceny Fofana.

Ample networking opportunities were created, taking place on the rooftop venue overlooking the trendy Cape Town city center. With attendees from across South Africa working in a variety of creative industries provided excellent networking opportunities and insight into the fashion and other creative industries within South Africa.

The WGSN conference created the opportunity to experience WGSN from a fresh perspective, other than the already excellent interaction from behind a computer screen that many in the fashion business cherish already. More importantly, meeting the people behind the research and platform exposed the human side of the agency and provided a more enriching and personal interaction. This conference was an outstanding learning platform for any individual wishing to be a part of the fashion and other creative industries today, but, more importantly, tomorrow.



Key takeaway: “We live in an everchanging world. Making sense of this all and understanding trends shaping the future are necessities to make an impact now and in the future.


Open Day Joburg 2017

posted on July 11th, 2017 by Lissa Leandro Correa Mendes

Book your place at OPEN DAY this Saturday at Blairgowrie campus. Join us to discuss careers in fashion, studying at LISOF and speak to lecturers about subjects such as Visual Merchandising, Design, Media, Buying, Computer Design, Business and more. Bring your latest report and you can write the free assessment test, plus there will be a Fashion Show on campus, showcasing student work.


Contact us for any further details: 086 11 54763


Open Day 2017

posted on February 23rd, 2017 by LISOF

Book HERE for LISOF Open Day 2017.

Write the assessment test and you will be able to enter the Converse Design-a-Sneaker competition* to win various prizes. Take a tour of campus to explore classes, speak with lecturers and learn more about the BA Fashion Degree, BCom in Fashion (Retail) and other courses offered. LISOF is known for acclaimed alumni Lisofians such as; Roman Handt, Rich Mnisi and Suzaan Heyns, but don’t forget that LISOF has built strong relationships with all the major South African fashion and accessory retailers too, that afford opportunities for current students to earn-while-they-learn. In celebration of the strong retail affiliations, Cotton On and Typo will have a Pop-Up-Shop at Open Day on campus!

Open day 2017

Poster cred:

Photo by: Fashion Photography Lecturer, Francki Retief

Creative Director: CEO and Founder, Shana Rosenthal

Styled by: Visual Head, Heidi Svendson

Make-up by: Head of Make Up and Course Developer, Janine Mc Nulty

Model: 1st Year student, Lindsay Kim Koch

Garments by: Bruny Dusabe from 2016 Industrial Romance collection

Poster graphics by: Computer Lecturer, Taryn de Munck

*Terms and Conditions Apply

  1. To enter the competition you need to write the LISOF assessment test first at Open Day.
  2. You need to bring along your latest academic transcript and copy of your ID.
  3. First 40 candidates will receive 1 Converse sneaker (either left or right foot) to create, refashion, draw and paint on in a limited time period! If all the shoes are taken, the candidate will receive a paper template.
  4. Theme of shoe design: WHAT DOES A LISOF CONVERSE LOOK LIKE?
  5. Candidates will then need to take a photo of their sneaker and post it on their own Twitter/Instagram/Facebook page. MUST tag Lisof AND use a specified hashtag (tbc) as well as a short caption explaining your design. The published post on Facebook MUST be set to public and profiles on Instagram MUST be set to public.
  6. Spot prizes will be awarded on the day and prizes for the social media competition will be confirmed shortly – stay tuned!
  7. LISOF reserves the right to vary, postpone, suspend, or cancel the competition and any prizes (which have not yet been awarded), or any aspect thereof, without notice at any time, for any reason which LISOF, in its sole discretion, deems necessary.
  8. Your entry into the competition means that you agree and understand that you will stand a chance only to win a prize and that there is no guarantee that you will be receiving any prize.
  9. By submitting an entry the contestant agrees to the publication of his/her name, sneaker image and or photograph of person on the LISOF website, social media platforms and marketing communications and materials.
  10. The prize/s is/are not transferable and may not be deferred, changed or exchanged for cash.


Watch a snippet of OPEN DAY Jozi 2017:



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