Despite the fashion industry in the country still making baby steps, Malawian designer Nellie George Donga is steadily carrying the Malawian flag across the international scene with her heart winning designs under the brand Nells Creations.
Following her premier at Bingu International Conference Centre last year in June, when she joined Ghanaian designer and actor John Dumelo and local designer Lily Alfonso, Nellie stole the show with her talented and creative designs and managed to secure an invitation to exhibit in South Africa at the Retro Vintage Fashion Week.
Due to her impressive designs Nellie has been invited again this year to represent Malawi at the Tshwane Fashion Festival, a two-day fashion event that will host 10 international designers from across African countries like Botswana, Kenya, Tanzania, Swaziland and more as well as 10 South African designers.
Nellie spoke to Nyasa Showbizabout her preparations for the upcoming Tshwana showcase.
“I intend to exhibit modern African attires mixed with polka dots in addition to the use of flex material as part of go green conscious campaign and will be colourful and appealing with the use of our very own chitenje product, ’’ she explained.
Aside the Tshwana fashion festival, Donga further disclosed that she is yet to represent Malawi for the first time in Ghana in May at the Mercedes Benz African Fashion Week in Accra, after she was picked as one of the three designers out of 20.
“This is a breakthrough for my passion to see the talent that God gave me in designing and serves as an opportunity for Malawi and more particularly myself to showcase my designs and put Malawi on the map,’’ said Donga.
However the designer mentioned that she is in need of support from companies and other well wishers for the two festivals to be a success. She requires travel sponsorship mainly on air tickets, monetary support for logistics and incidental expenditure as well as press briefings.
Nellie also shared with Nyasa Showbiz on how she intends to give back to the community and reach out to the people living with albinism through NGOs like the Association of People Living with Albinism in Malawi (APAM) by particularly making brim hats for them and other necessities such as umbrellas and lotion.
The designer also plans to come closer with the little ones and donate school uniforms to drive the passion for education into the young ones and make sure they remain in school.
With talent that blossomed from a passion for sewing for her dolls and then herself and family, Nellie’s interest in fashion took her into fashion short courses in England after completing her business administration course and now goes full throttle in designing.
Nellie owns a boutique Nells Secret Possessions situated in Lilongwe Area 47/3 next to Seventh Day Adventist Church.