1:21 am

The Science and Art of Slowing Your Roll |

Backtrack to December hols 2014 and the freshly matriculated Refiloe rotting in front of the TV and daydreaming about her future varsity girl self. Three things were certain at that point in time. I was hella bored, I was anxiously waiting to start my pathway towards becoming the thing I always planned on being (a Civil Engineer) annnd I just started watching a new reality series on E! (Fashion Bloggers)- Cue eyes opening wide, mind ticking and brand new facet of 'future varsity girl self' being born.
The person whose name has been typed onto the pages of this site one too many times, the only POC on that whole show, the smartest, youngest and full blown university student at the time- Margaret Zhang literally burst onto the screen and manifested the self that I hoped to be as soon as I landed on the shores of Cape Town. Of course I had to become a blogger! How else was I supposed to exhaust all this surplus creative energy that was no longer going to be used up in the St Mary's art studio? How else was I to maintain the fine balance between extreme left brain and right brain thought while studying something that mostly articulated itself through the former?
It was decided after episode 1. 
Two more episodes in, it was decided that I have to be BIG and FAST.  

Moving slightly closer to the present (first year and second year), it came to my attention that little old Jemma and I were not the only passengers on the BIG FAST train. While it did take a little bit of a while for the culture to develop, a wave (tsunami?) of us began to recognise the gross expansion of the creative industry as it metamorphosed from the stereotypical category of Hobby to that of Career right before our eyes. I think I can stop typing in the past tense because that wave is still picking up right now.

More and more of my friends are recognising their closeted creative passions and the potential financial rewards they stand to gain from the changing marketing strategies across a number of brands. Future ambassadors, stylists, creative directors and content creators are being converted from whatever else they were doing before- which I love and advocate for as we do need some MAJOR changes to these industries and the ways they handle our demographic and generation. I love that we're inventing new career paths.

What I don't particularly like, however, is the anxious general feeling that has sprouted as a result. While I'm sure the early twenties have been associated with confusion and self discovery for a long long time- we have a plethora of films like Reality Bites to vouch for that- what I am sensing is a frenzied hunger for immediate "Margaret Zhangness" which is obviously possible but certainly does not take away from a more viscous flow towards ones hopes and dreams. Our peers are doing the most, getting the gigs of their dreams and thus fuelling our impatience to finally 'make it', but this hunger for immediacy (which I've definitely felt too- hence the name of the affliction) may potentially detract from real sustainable growth and maintenance of that success. There are a couple of currently highly relevant people in the creative industry whom I struggle to see as still relevant in the next 5 years and I do think that's mostly attributed to minimal work on brand sustainability and/or skills.

So a little bit of thought and a lot of talking to my mates has allowed me to draw the conclusion that is forever splashed across the TL but not taken as seriously as I think it should. Work hard-cool. Hustle harder-cool, but do get comfortable with the fact that 1: every dog has its day and 2: The state of absorption, skill growth and self cav is thee most important bit of all if you are in this for more than your allocated 15 minutes.

I'm trying to get this degree and carve out and craft my long term contribution to my other love-fashion. I'm currently comfortable with a warm simmer and the opportunities to occasionally bang out some beautiful images with the help of my extremely talented and beautiful friends.

So that's that.

Hope you like them.


Photography: Aubrey Ndiweni
Creative Direction and Styling: Tshiamo Ramano and Refiloe Mokgele
Models: Qiniso Van Damme and Sihle Ludziya

Oufit Details

Look 1 on Qiniso
Beret: Vintage
Sunglasses: Balenciaga
Shirt: Vintage
Bag: Model's Own
Skirt: Mr Price
Sneakers: Nike

Look 1 on Sihle
Sunglasses: Coton On
Shirt: Selfi
Trousers: Models Own
Sneakers: Reebok

Look 2 on Qiniso
Dress: River Island

Look 2 on Sihle
Shirt: Vintage

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