Luiz ‘DeLaja, the Fashion Designer born in Brazil but currently living in South Africa, Cape Town.
Monday morning with 30 degrees in Cape Town and I decided to get lost searching for Luiz’ new shop in Greenpoint. When I come across these small houses with different colours near the Cape Quarter mall. I passed by a blue house and I heard “Oi”, which means “Hi” in portuguese from Brazil. I finally had found the place!
This is not the first time that I interviewed Luiz. Last year I interviewed him just before Cosmopolitan Lingerie Fashion Show, so I was able to get a look at the pieces he created before they were presented at the show.
This year was different. Compared to last year, Luiz had so much work to get done before the big day that I was only able to interview him after the show.
“Last year I only did four sections and the finale. This year I had to do the whole show, which was nine different sections plus the opening. So it was in total roughly about 30 items as opposed to last year where we had 16”, he says while remembering all the work it gave him during the past two months.
Yes! It takes that time to prepare a fashion show. Luiz says that usually the first month is getting the ideas and concepts together, but the lingerie only comes a month before the show and then he needs to adapt his pieces to it and come up with even more ideas. But where does all that inspiration comes from?
Last year, Cosmopolitan Magazine did a photoshoot based on Absolut Vodka and the Swedish House Mafia. See if you remember this:
The 2012 Lingerie Fashion Show was based on that photoshoot which was a collection in black and gold. That collection was extended this year and the inspiration came from Skyy Vodka.
“If you noticed in the opening we had glass, blue lights. A very icy feel, I worked with a lot of glass, perspex, little blue LED lights in the head pieces …” said Luiz.
‘DeLaja believes that it is all about being creative, pushing boundaries and not do the same over and over. So he decided to present a new piece this year, the butterfly wings.
“The butterflies were a struggle because it was the first time I did something like that, I’m used to very structured wings and feathers, but it came out amazingly well.”
Like I mentioned on my last post, I did not like the show’s location this year, so I decided to hear Luiz’ opinion on this.
“I was a little bit sceptical about the location this year. Firstly because there were a few things we lost with the location. We didn’t have full control in terms of lightning because it was very open. Secondly, the backstage was really small compared to the space we had last year.
But when I look at it again, a lot more people got to experience it without being invited guests and that’s what marketing is all about. We need to realise that it is not meant to be an exclusive show for the Jet-Set. It’s meant to be a show for the consumer too and putting it in a space like that (a mall) gives it more accessibility to the final consumer.”
I totally agree with him. But I’m still uncertain about the smell of chips coming from McDonalds.
But enough talking about the fashion show. Luiz ‘DeLaja also has other projects and his main concern at the moment is his new shop in Greenpoint!
“Now we will have two retail shops if not more and an online presence. It’s a lot of responsibility, but it is also a dream I always had. Getting the shop going is one of the key priorities.”
I looked around and we could see how the shop was still getting prepared. Luiz says he is a perfectionist and until everything is in place, he will not open it. But he believes that in three weeks everything will be ready.
Here is a photo I took from outside the shop.
If you want to visit, here is the adress and contacts:
51B Waterkant Street
Cnr Waterkant and Napier Street
You can also check Ministry 4 style website to take a look at Luiz’ creations: http://www.ministry4style.com/
- Luiz worked with Adidas this year. He had created costumes for Adidas’ presentations for the World Cup in Brazil 2014.
- Luiz is off to Brazil in November for Fashion week in Rio. He was invited to go watch and we know that he will come with even more ideas and maybe collaborations for his collection of footwear. He says he wants to start reconnecting with Brazil.
- The majority of the artists or creators keep their best pieces unless someone is really willing to pay for it and will do justice to it. Luiz says “I’ve been getting lately offers of people that want to buy pieces or rent them. It is hard to assign a price to a piece because you need to look at the price of the material and at the time it took me to create it, so it’s a bit tricky.”
- Luiz is thinking of, one day, bring all his pieces together in a show based on “This is what I did till today”.
- The pink wings you saw at this year’s Lingerie Fashion Show can cost from R7000 to R8000.
- Luiz has a surprise coming for the Opening of the new shop in December. He asked me to keep it a secret, so I’ll leave you with curiosity.
See you soon,
Melissa De Sousa Nunes