Natasha Jaume and Carina Louw

ERRE’s Natasha Jaume and Carina Louw share what it takes to make this leather and silk organza creation, nominated as Design Indaba 2017’s Most Beautiful Object in South Africa

COMMIT Accept – and commit fully to – the fact that creativity is a hard task-master and that to create any beautiful object, real hard work and determination is required. Five people worked on the dress at various stages, with every petal being handstitched onto the dress. But in the end, after clocking up more than 100 hours, the beautiful object was finished. @ELLEmagazineSA 143 INSIDE WORD COMPILED BY: HOLLY MEADOWS / IMAGES: ANNE-LISE VAN NIEKERK, BEVAN DAVIES PLAY An important part of creativity is to have fun with ideas. We played around with the hundreds of cut-off pieces of leather lying around in our studio by hand-stitching them onto pieces of fabric in various ways.

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GET INSPIRED Russian composer Tchaikovsky once said, ‘Inspiration is a guest that does not willingly visit the lazy.’ We are true believers in this statement and we always do extensive visual research in order to find inspiration for our collections. The inspiration for this dress came from our travels to the gardens of the Alhambra palace in Spain and the gorgeous Babylonstoren gardens in Franschhoek. REFINE At this stage unnecessary details are eliminated and the fit, fabric and design are refined until the whole creation is perfect.

DESIGN Take time to work on every aspect of the design. For this piece, we created organic floral pattern-inspired designs of blouses, dresses, jackets, leather capes and accessories, and over 50 rough sketches, before we chose the final design.

TEST In order to create a beautiful object, you have to experiment. Only through testing your ideas can you see possible results. For example, we wanted the dress to appear airy while maintaining a silhouette that was structured and strong. We tested various textiles in order to achieve this eect.

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