Fashion industry mourns passing of SA fashion designer Coenraad de Mol
The local fashion industry is devastated and in shock after the passing of leading South African designer Coenraad de Mol.
De Mol passed away on Tuesday.
“Coenraad was a highly gifted and knowledgeable industry leader who derived great joy from the creative process which he expressed in his cutting-edge De Mil menswear label which was most recently seen at the Cape Wools and Mohair SA Designer Challenge show at SA Fashion Week in October 2019," said Lucilla Booyzen, director of the South African Fashion Week.
"He was a perfectionist, exceptionally generous with his expertise and took great delight in his role as design and production technology tutor of SAFW’s 21 Steps to Retail Designer Programme”, she added.
De Mil was established in 1997 and moved into male-inspired, gender-neutral clothing in 2007. The designer said he did not regard gender neutrality as just a theme but “It’s what I do,” he would say.
His designs catered to those who don’t have a place as well as those who choose not to be boxed-in by societal norms or conventions.
Photographer Eunice Driver expressed her sadness on SA Fashion Week's Instagram post saying: "What a loss for humanity and SA fashion".
While Paul Tilsley took to Twitter to pay his respects, "Devastated. It turns out this was his final bow. Cenraad de Mol, known for his label DE MIL, at @safashionweek AW20. Coenraad passed on last night. A real friend, gone. A real creative force, lost to this world."
The industry has lost both a rare and visionary creative as well as a caring and committed friend, employer, mentor, and to many.