Batya Bouzaglou

Fashion Designer

Emerging fashion designer Batya Bouzaglou explains how her interest in fashion began: "As a kid, I loved dressing up my Barbie dolls, shredding and painting their clothes to suit me, and them, and I just never stopped. Only now the Barbie's are just really, really tall.� Bouzaglou went on to get her diploma in fashion design from the Spero Villioti Elite Design Academy and has earned her stripes working as apprentice to Villioti, who has, himself, been a mainstay of the South African fashion industry. She showcased at Audi Jo'burg Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2009, one of Johannesburg's premier fashion exhibitions. She won the Bridal Africa Young Designers Award 2009 and was a semi finalist in the Durban July Young Designers Competition and a semi finalist in the Miss Earth Young Designers Competition, both in 2006. Currently she is living in London, working in the distribution department of fashion agency M&L Harris, which specialises in high-end clothing. "My mentor once told me every designer needs to work in retail at some point to learn what people actually want to wear, what people actually buy. And what better place � to experience fashion consumerism at its best, than in London � says Bouzaglou. She intends to return home in September and aims to create a label that is "a little sinister or edgy�, incorporating "unconventional cuts and sharp colours �. �Lynley Donnelly

Lunch spot: Espresso, Parkhurst, Johannesburg