Designer branches out

Chanté Bock is working hard to launch her solo clothing line this year.

21 January 2021 | Art and Entertainment

Chanté Bock; Fashion designer; “In terms of design it is going well, but getting the right fabrics is holding me back.”

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Walvis Bay-based designer Chanté Bock has decided that 2021 will be the year in which she embarks on her solo fashion journey.

“I really want to branch out this year. My brand has not been officially launched yet, so I would really like to achieve that this year,” she says.

Her first solo endeavour is driven by the concept of ethical fashion. “Ethical fashion starts from the design of a piece. I think it is not about the designer or even the product, but about the difference it will make. It’s about being conscious when you create a product, starting from the designing process, how you do it to what fabrics and materials you use, until the finished product and ensuring that it does no harm to the environment,” Bock explained.

This process is not without its fair share of challenges.

“In terms of design it is going well, but I think getting the right fabrics is holding me back,” she says adding that the pandemic affects
several suppliers’ ability to secure and provide materials from foreign markets.

According to her, the Namibian fashion industry as a whole is gravitating towards ethical fashion with a more homegrown-centred identity.

“We saw it last year, with many new brands starting, especially in jewellery and accessories. These brands have a more sustainable approach and in using Namibian techniques, you can definitely see it switching to a more local identity.”

The 25-year-old will be stepping away from her work with her friend Fallone Tambwe, under their brand FC Textiles, to pursue her own work.

FC Textiles was established during the throws of the pandemic when the two friends joined an entrepreneurship programme under the Goethe Institute.

Bock says that fashion has always been important to her.

“From a young age I would make paper dolls and draw outfits on them. In high school I designed outfits for my friends and family, but never made them. After school I enrolled for a double major in fashion studies and textiles at university,” she says.

She notes that making it in the Namibian fashion industry is not.

“It’s such a small industry and there are some individuals who really know what they’re doing.”