Isabel de Villiers always wears a smile. One immediately gets the impression that she is a friendly, warm soul when you meet her. This is also portrayed in her inclusivity of every female shape, from size 32 to 48, in her collections that are regularly shown at SA Fashion Week. Jill and I first met this South African designer a few months ago in her in Cape Town studio. She has since moved to Pretoria where all her garments are handmade. Her aesthetic is bright, cheerful and incredibly comfortable. And we’re so proud to now have her garments for sale on Equilibrio.
WHO IS SOUTH AFRICAN DESIGNER ISABEL DE VILLIERS?
Q1. Tell us a bit about yourself. Where did you grow up and where did your love for fashion start?
I am a Sagittarius, part of a twin, left-handed and kinda short. I’m stimulated by art, music and travelling and grew up in Pretoria where I studied Fashion Design at Tshwane University of Technology. My love for fashion came from my love for art. I was always drawing and making things as a child. I wanted to be a creative entrepreneur. My dream is to live a creative life.
My favourite place on the planet is a small coastal town, Tofo, in Mozambique. I am passionate about all creative businesses and the balance between the two. I like sitting under a massive Kiepersol tree in my garden, learning new things, creating with my hands, daydreaming and I really, really like my job!
Q2. You were one of the first South African designers to make clothing for all the beautiful female shapes in South Africa. Was it a leap of faith? How did it all begin?
We launched our brand in 2012 catering for all shapes and all sizes. It was a conscious decision. I am inspired by the shape of a women’s curves. Being an inclusive brand is a true reflection of us as women and the many shapes and sizes we take on in our lifetime.
Q3. Your latest collection is bursting with colour. Have you always loved working with colour?
My love of colour stems from my love for art. I am fascinated by colour therapy and the colours we tend to choose subconsciously when we are happy, moody, in need of confidence or when we need to be brave. We all lead colourful lives, let’s celebrate them!
Top left: Isabel De Villiers Fit & Flare Dress, Grey, size 32-48, R1,200.00 – R1,500.00 BUY
Top right: Isabel De Villiers Fit & Flare Dress, Red, size 32-48, R1,200.00 – R1,500.00 BUY
Bottom left: Isabel De Villiers Summer Frill Dress, Charcoal, size 32-48, R990.00 – R1,100.00 BUY
Bottom right: Isabel De Villiers Printed Cocoon Dress, Pink (also in black), size 32-48, R1,400.00 BUY
Q4. What’s your favourite garment in your collection?
I love our signature Laser Cut pieces. They are a labour of love and super fun to wear. It’s a tossup between the Laser Cut Kaftan Dress and Laser Cut Boxy Dress every morning when I am getting dressed.
Top left: Isabel De Villiers Panel Dress, Blue (also in yellow), size 32-48, R1,500.00 – R1,600.00 BUY
Top right: Isabel De Villiers Boxy Dress, Red (also in black and blue), size 32-48, R1,600.00 – R1,999.00 BUY
Bottom left: Isabel De Villiers Kaftan Dress, Yellow (also in black), size 32-48, R1,500.00 BUY
Botton right: Isabel De Villiers Boxy Dress, Red (also in red and blue), size 32-48, R1,600.00 – R1,999.00 BUY
Q5. What’s the most popular garment in your collection?
Our Summer Jumpsuit is a winner for all shapes, all sizes. We are known for our jumpsuits and they remain a customer and studio favourite, season after season. Flattering fit, versatile styling options, pockets, elasticated waist and easy to wear fabric. Cut from BonBon fabric that has a wonderful stretch in it. It dries in under half an hour and doesn’t crease. It’s soft on your skin with beautiful drape qualities.
Top left: Isabel De Villiers Printed Boxy Top, Pink (also in black), size 32-48, R799.00 BUY
and Isabel De Villiers Printed Culottes, Pink (also in black), size 32-48, R990.00 BUY
Top right: Isabel De Villiers Printed Boxy Top, Black (also in pink), size 32-48, R799.00 BUY
and Isabel De Villiers Printed Culottes, Black (also in pink), size 32-48, R990.00 BUY
Bottom left: Isabel De Villiers Summer Jumpsuit, Navy (also in black), size 32-44, R999.00 – R1,200.00 BUY
Bottom right: Isabel De Villiers Summer Jumpsuit, Black (also in navy), size 32-44, R999.00 – R1,200.00 BUY
Q6. Who is your typical customer?
We design with a certain woman in mind: she is confidence, power, strength and beauty. Our aim is to uncomplicate fashion by designing pieces that are easy to wear, flattering, fit into your busy life and last a lifetime.
Q7. Have you started making plans for next season yet?
Yes, we are currently in the research and design phase of our winter collection. Very excited about this one! It’s going to be all about sleeve detail and oversized pockets.
Whether your silhouette is tiny or curvy, Isabel de Villiers has made a garment for you. Don’t miss the chance to own one of her limited edition pieces. See our full collection of South African designer, Isabel de Villiers, here.