LARA KLAWIKOWSKI A/W 2017 at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2017

Our Autumn/Winter 2017 collection showcased at African Fashion International’s Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2017 was inspired by historical architecture in the Cape Town CBD – the detail in windows, doorways, staircases and intricate mosaic floors of City Hall and surrounding buildings.

I became intrigued by the way urban Capetonian women dressed centuries ago, and imagined a contemporary interpretation, referencing the elements of historical urban Cape Town fashion and the architectural geometry of the city. I was inspired by the diverse cross-pollination of fashion and cultural influences in South Africa historically, that still exists today.

The collection employs various manipulated material surfaces creating artisanal fabrics, tactile woollen embroidery and appliqué, quilting, signature re-fabrication and delicate hand-woven tulle weaves. All materials used were uniquely re-fabricated and hand-woven at our studio in Woodstock, and combined to form structured, light-weight garments with refined textural details offering winter warmth without bulk.

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2017 Invitation

We are excited to invite you to our Autumn/Winter 2017 showcase at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2017! Tickets are available for purchase online here


Dark beauty backstage by A Fashion Friend. See more backstage photography from MBFWCT here

LARA KLAWIKOWSKI at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2015

Tickets available here

LARA KLAWIKOWSKI at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2014

LARA KLAWIKOWSKI S/S 2014/15 collection WeAreWhatTheySee was inspired by the unusual beauty of warped frozen perspectives of flowers in ice-cubes, how each plane of an ice-cube is a unique view of the same object within.

I explored how different states of water change the perspectives and textures of objects. I was intrigued by these visual mutations, the beauty of hydration and dehydration, the effects of excess and depletion, and their juxtaposition, how the addition and subtraction of water can conceal, reveal and accentuate the details and lines in leaves and flowers, and how leaves and flowers have been used in traditional clothing.

I was fascinated by the way a 3-dimensional flower acquires a 2-d perspective inside an ice-cube, the same way we put people in boxes and flatten them into our 2-d perceptions. Regardless of what we are, what we wear, what we project, we are reduced to someone else’s opinion and have little control of their perception of us – WeAreWhatTheySee.

See the runway photos here

Thank you CTFC for supporting the show!

LARA KLAWIKOWSKI - Backstage at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2013

Fine art photographer Gregor Rohrig was backstage at LARA KLAWIKOWSKI at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2013 and took these beautiful photos…

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2013

LARA KLAWIKOWSKI showcased a collection of womenswear entitled ‘BlindSight’ at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2013 last week, in the AFI Next Generation Show supported by the Cape Town Fashion Council.


After visiting the Institute for the Blind and seeing the creative work they do, I became very aware of how dependent my career is on my sense of sight. I was intrigued by the idea of an imaginary state of blindness and what I would see in this state. I imagined seeing a canvas of pure white or pure black and shades in between, depending on the strength of the lighting in my environment.

I was inspired by how the visually impaired see a texture by feeling it; how a sharper contrast in texture gives a more vivid image in the mind’s eye. I have used traditional cane-weaving techniques as inspiration for delicate woven panels with subtle geometry and mind-consuming texture, and haphazard pleating/sculpting to enhance the contrast in 3-dimensionality and mimic how the visually impaired may encounter unexpected shapes and re-construct them.

As a conceptual designer I create fashion as art. The S/S 2013 collection is a move to make a more commercial and accessible range, whilst retaining artistic details of my couture designs.

See the runway photos of the collection here


Lara Klawikowski runway looks from Arise Cape Town Fashion Week 2009, photographed by Simon Deiner and we-are-awesome.