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Harare Hustler designer on what makes him tick

by Janine Dube
03 Jul 2014 at 19:15hrs | Views
The apparel industry is very competitive and only the smartest and most innovative manage to last the course.

Terrie Mahati, a Zimbabwean designer based in the UK, is one such person and OneVybe Magazine got a chance to find out what it is exactly that has made him successful where others have failed.

Terrie's designs, which include Kunta Kinte, Top Kosso and Harare Hustler, have been worn by a wide selection of renowned musicians like Oliver Mtukudzi, Movado and Oskido.

On what inspired him to become a designer, Terrie told OneVybe: "The urge to look different amongst other people back in the 90's and my love of hip hop culture drove me to start designing my own t-shirts."

In the competitive market many have tried a similar business model to that of Terrie's but with modest success.

Asked what he has done differently to enable his business to have lasting success Terrie says: "This is an industry you have to passionately love in order to survive in it for a long time, whereas most people just jump into it expecting to make profit overnight.

"I also equipped myself before I got into the industry, that is, I studied graphic designing, apparel designing, pattern cutting and sewing to fully understand.

"Whereas most folks just buy plain t-shirts and get them printed, I design and get my clothing cut, sewn, stitched and sewn from scratch."

The designer puts a lot of time and dedication into his work and one of his greatest challenges, particularly from 1995 to 2008, have been people who have attempted to steal his designs.

Quality and innovation have seen him through and Terrie says: "I made sure I came up with some very creative designs on good quality garments that can compete on the international market.

"In order to beat the bootleggers and haters I contacted most stylists giving them t-shirts to give out to celebrities they deal with and that formula worked."

Terrie's t-shirts can be delivered all over the world and now there is a new Africa Division, which helps with distribution.

To buy Terrie Mahati's merchandise:
Facebook shop page: Harare Hustler Shop.
or call +27 81 752 0714 in Capetown, South Africa.

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