Zimbili Shezi is the designer behind the ZimbyLees Apparel ladies wear label.

She discovered her love for fashion during her school years but followed her parents’ wishes and studied nursing. Unable to turn her back on her passion, she enrolled at and graduated from the Sizanani Academy of Sewing and Fashion Design in 2013.

She describes herself as diligent, reserved but responsive, unassuming and amicable and says that her designs are inspired by nature.

She loves designing tailored ladies wear and, specifically, beautiful designing corsets. Her favourite design – which she wore herself – comprised a pale gold pencil full length skirt with a back slit, and a beaded centre back panel and a corset top with a square neck, beaded along top edge and shoulder straps.

Her favourite local designer is David Tlale. The local celebrity that she would most like to dress is Zanele Mbokazi, and the international celebrity Michelle Obama because both embody sophisticated elegance.

The latest fashion trend that is influencing her work right now is a return to the 70s. She is incorporating the ‘forget symmetry’ philosophy and the latest fashion colours – “grey, including shades like riverside, airy blue and shark skin with a spark of colour with shades like lush green, bodacious, porters clay and aurora red – in her DFF show collection.

Ultimately, Zimbili would like to own her own ladies wear studio in Durban.
She would also like to build up a company making in excess of R100 000 per month.