Angela Kakooza is a fashion designer by passion and a lawyer by profession. Her passion has taken the better of her and tonight she will be showcasing some of her designs on the runway. She has dubbed her show the Kaza fashion Show where she will be exhibiting her “inhale and exhale” collection.
She says: “I want to showcase the clothes I have been inspired to design. I was looking for a way of showing those designs off, and sharing them with fashion lovers, so this is the best way.”
Seven models, four girls and three boys will flaunt Kakooza’s urban contemporary designs. The 29-year-old designer explains that her designs are a fusion of urban styles and contemporary fashions. “Urban is western style while contemporary is what trendy people like wearing. I like twisting urban styles with kitenge to give it an African touch,” she explains.
Kakooza says making custom made designs to suit her client’s tastes and preferences makes her different, plus her prices are very friendly. She adds, “I do not want to charge people an arm and leg for good clothes.”
Her items range from Shs25,000 to Shs150,000 depending on the fabric and designs.
Kakooza discovered the designer in her when she was 12 years old. “My dad used to buy the same (matching) clothes for my elder sister and I. I thought they looked good but I always wanted to look different, so I would get a pair of scissors and cut them to look different. So from that age, I learnt how to knit as well, but I did not have much interest in fashion. I resorted to buying clothes and changing their style to suit what I felt was cool at the time,” she recounts.
Little did she know that she was unintentionally harnessing her designing passion. When she grew older, she became aware of trends and as she cut and sewed clothes, her sisters took interest. Eventually she started designing clothes for her sisters and friends.
“The first design I created was a dress for my friend for her graduation party. That was six years ago,” she recalls. In 2012 when Kakooza’s contract at NGO called Retrak Uganda ended, she decided to rediscover passion.
She started making shirts for her male friends. “They liked my designs. That is when I figured that I could earn from fashion, so I started an NGO called Inspirational Children Uganda and alongside it I started designing and selling clothes to earn a living. So I earn a living from fashion and give back to the community with the NGO. I get to enjoy both passions at a go,” she further explains.
The young designer describes herself as a versatile one with abilities to design clothes for the runway as well as those that can be worn to the office. “At the moment my clientele is working class women and weekend clothes for men and children,” she adds.
She likes working with vibrant colours and different prints of kitenge fabric, satin, silk, and chiffon.
“I sit in my office on Bombo Road and sketch designs I feel my clients and friends will like. I then get my assistant seamstress and we start making the clothes with my instruction and when I advertise to my clients they actually love them,” Kakooza explains about her work. Why did you choose to call your line Kaza? I ask her. “My father’s name is Kakooza, my sister has a construction company called Ooza so we are trying to exhaust our father’s name, and I also wanted an African feel to it.”