Ina Barkhuysen, A Fashionable Inspiration.

To champion local art and design is at the core of Odd Café’s personality. This involves the process of scouting for artists of all kind – musicians, painters, photographers, designers of all sorts. The artists are not only helped showcase their work but also, provided for them, is a meeting place for a cross pollination of ideas and/ or solitude – as the creative process may dictate. In this very regard, Odd Café hosts its inaugural Fashion Workshop featuring Ina Barkhuysen. Aged 71, with a generous dollop of style, she just finished her BA in Fashion Design and is set to move and shake the world of fashion and style in Joburg.

Barkhuysen is continuously flipping the model, as she did when she enrolled with London School of Fashion in Rosebank, Johannesburg4 years ago. She says fashion has always been a passion of hers and she remembers learning and loving to sew at a tender age of 13. That was in the 50s, the era when Christian Dior and Chanel ruled the global world of fashion and style. And yet for Barkhuysen, all these fashion houses have nothing on Giorgio Armani.  She is inspired by Armani’s elegance and classic lines and these influences are present in her work. “My work is classic and sways between social and formal. The point is to strike a balance between ornate and elegant, and, serviceable and comfortable.” For Barkhuysen, these are very important attributes that speak to the woman, especially the modern woman who oscillates between work, home and a vibrant social life. She says her work speaks to mature women from ages 30 and above although it may appeal to some younger women too. This means that her work is not only meant for model size women but the woman with curves too. Barkhuysen says that whenever a woman passes through a certain stage of her life: singledom, child bearing, mothering, the empty nest and the senior years, it is as if she is starting a new life altogether. Therefore, the rationale of her creative is to document the metamorphosis of woman throughout an entire lifetime.

The design house will be called Krizilys and the collection to be showcased is two-fold: Ebony & Ivory and Putting on the Ritz. Ebony & Ivory will feature a lot of classics in terms of dresses revolving around the LBD, except with a touch of ivory. Putting on the Ritz will be clothing that is event specific, that is, for cocktail and tea parties, for balls and other glamorous events. Her work will be showcased for the first time at a fashion workshop at Odd Café in Greenside. The workshop will consist of invited guests who will not only view the collection but also discuss what their opinion of the clothing is. Barkhuysen hopes that getting fashionistas together, and allowing for a cross pollination of ideas will enable her to better her fashion offering and to continuously be in touch with fashion loving women.

Being 71 and launching into fashion is not going to be without challenges but Barkhuysen is looking up with hope for a great launch into the cut throat fashion industry. With a multi-generational experience of fashion, Krizilys will take the fashion world by storm! More than that, Barkhuysen is the story of one such personality who continued to go after their passions even at a very mature age. It is the story of taking control of one’s own life and realising dreams and making every moment count. That is inspiration.

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