Africa Fashion Guide
A social enterprise promoting sustainability within Africa's fashion and textile industry.


May 17th, 2012

YDE – Where Fashionistas Meet – RETAIL PROFILE

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At Africa Fashion Guide we will be focusing more and more on retailers on the Continent.

To start with we have we have asked Tshepy our South Africa contributor to profile a local store and break down what it does for you our readers.


With fashion being one of the fastest growing industries in South Africa, more and more retail shops are now stocking on locally made designs to sell at their shops. The Young Designers Emporium (YDE) is one such shop and it has proved to be a haven for designers especially young designers who have just finished their fashion degrees and are looking for a platform to showcase their talents. Founded in 1995 by Paul Simmons, the YDE concept was first thought of as a means to showcase the local talent of South Africa’s clothing and accessory designers and it has been nothing but a huge success since then. This is a store for the young and trendy customers of both sexes offering a lot more than just cutting edge, sexy, chic, expressive, edgy, underground and original clothing and accessories to customers who follow both local and international trends.

Though there are many stores in the country that have recently followed the trend by also selling locally designed clothes and accessories like Edgars stores which are selling Thula Sindi’s designs, Legit stores which are about to introduce designs in their shop designed by fashion veteran David Tlale, and Mr Price stores (which recently launched their finest designs from the 031 Fashion week designer Cindy Armstrong) YDE strictly sells locally made designs that are not only trendy but very affordable too. Renowned for their window campaigns, the YDE window campaign always puts across what could be a boring retail message in an irrelevant and surprising manner that will with no doubt turn heads in the mall environment.

“It is awesome to know that there are shops like this which sells locally designer clothes that are very affordable especially for young people like us students. We love to look good and most times it comes at a hefty price but not at YDE” says university student Tessa Mbambo.

Since its first store opened in Cape Town seventeen years ago with 10 designers, 19 more shops has been opened in prime retail shopping centers across South Africa with more than 90 local fashion designers who supply the YDE with merchandise such as clothing, footwear, jewelery, accessories and bags. The are roughly 13 men’s clothing designers including Absurd, Billionaire, Gerrard Lua smith, Loots, Port, Ruald Rheeder, Scorpio, Trigger, Vntage 66, X&O Mens and 43 ladies clothing designers including Blackeyed Susan, Blake, Bombshell, CX, Dare Clothing, Flava, Funk, Icon Ready2Wear, Khosi Nkosi, Rock CoutureRuby Diamond and Sperstar among others. They also have around 37 designers offering footwear, bags, accessories, jewellery and home-ware including I love shoes, Diva Red, Havainas, SWA shoes, Vaporize, Estiago, Rush bags, Storm bags, F.U.G, Viki-Lou, Chameleon Crafts, Lulu, Birlin Eyewear among others.

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YDE takes designer merchandise on consignment and designers are allowed to set their own prices depending on the market. The designers do receive a monthly payment for their sales, monthly display fee and sales commission payable to YDE and they are also offered access to systems which allow them to view sales and stock information on a daily basis.

The Young Designers Emporium is at the forefront of supporting local fashion. The new Rising Talent initiative is part of this philosophy. Should a new designer wish to join YDE, they would need to contact Karin at the YDE head office on 021 460 2805.

For more info contact

Photos courtesy of YDE

Author: South Africa Contributor – Tshepy Matloga


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