De­signer gives back to South Africa

Weekend Argus (Sunday Edition) - - NEWS - NABEELAH SHAIKH

FROM show­cas­ing on the cat­walks of Italy to be­ing a de­signer for the Miss World pageant, politi­cians and celebri­ties, Haroun Han­srot has rubbed shoul­ders with some of the best in the fash­ion in­dus­try.

Han­srot, 51, who has been a fash­ion de­signer for more than 10 years, has also been us­ing his skills to em­power oth­ers.

On com­plet­ing school, even though Han­srot had his heart set on pur­su­ing fash­ion, his par­ents pushed him into study­ing to­wards a psy­chol­ogy and French lit­er­a­ture de­gree at the then Univer­sity of Durban Westville.

“That only lasted for two years un­til I de­cided to en­ter a fash­ion il­lus­tra­tion com­pe­ti­tion to win a bur­sary to study fash­ion,” said Han­srot.

He was awarded a bur­sary to study at the Reiner Academy of Fash­ion. Dur­ing his time there he emerged as the top stu­dent of the year and was also awarded the ti­tle of de­signer of the year.

This paved the way to his suc­cess in the fash­ion in­dus­try.

Be­fore he knew it, Han­srot was on a flight to Italy, to be­gin an in­tern­ship at the pres­ti­gious Ac­cademia Ital­iana Arte Moda Col­lege after be­ing awarded another schol­ar­ship.

In Italy, Han­srot started to ex­pand his fash­ion net­work and made con­tacts in the in­dus­try in­stan­ta­neously.

“I at­tended many shows there with the likes of de­sign­ers like Ar­mani and Ver­sace,’ said Han­srot.

After his four-year stint in Italy, he re­turned to take on the in­dus­try here at home.

Han­srot show­cased at sev­eral ma­jor events lo­cally and in­ter­na­tion­ally. He shared the ramp with de­sign­ers Gavin Ra­jah, Ver­sace and Zuhair Mu­rad at the Pos­i­tive Rocks fash­ion show held by Sun In­ter­na­tional, and was the only Durban de­signer to show­case there in 2006.

He later be­gan de­sign­ing for other ma­jor events in­clud­ing Miss South Africa, the Durban July and even the Miss World pageant, where he judged the top swimwear and top model cat­e­gories. He was also fea­tured on Top Billing on sev­eral oc­ca­sions.

“I was part of the of­fi­cial Miss World de­signer team for two years where I got to work with Ju­lia Mor­ley, the owner of the pageant. I par­tic­i­pated in in­ter­na­tional fash­ion weeks in Goa and Mau­ri­tius shar­ing the ramp with de­sign­ers like Manish Mal­ho­tra,” said Han­srot.

When he’s not de­sign­ing for pri­vate clients, he uses his time to em­power dis­ad­van­taged women by teach­ing them to do bead­work and hand­work.

He also re­cently joined his close busi­ness as­so­ciate and friend Nafeesa Joosab to start an or­gan­i­sa­tion called Haute Events, which fo­cuses on bring­ing in­ter­na­tional fash­ion and life­style show­cases to South Africa.

“What we also plan to do is to pro­mote lo­cal fash­ion tal­ent and we want to take South African de­sign­ers as well as cre­ative artists abroad to pro­mote them and help with their per­sonal de­vel­op­ment,” said Han­srot.

Han­srot cur­rently runs a ready-to-wear fash­ion line called H&S in col­lab­o­ra­tion with busi­ness­woman Sor­isha Naidoo.

PIC­TURE: SUP­PLIED

Han­srot walks the ramp of a fash­ion show in Durban with one of his mod­els.

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