The South African fashion industry, like many other industries globally, is currently going through a rough time. However, this industry has generally been flourishing over the years, with many fashion designers establishing their own labels and clothing boutiques mushrooming everywhere. This has created healthy competition and we are in awe of the grand design garments that we see displayed.

This feature celebrates a fashion designer and boutique owner, Siyamthanda Celeste Bottoman who took the plunge and left her stable job as a Phlebotomist to pursue her love for fashion, a year ago. Growing up she had a keen interest in fashion designing, but always thought venturing into the science or medical field would be more financially rewarding.

While working at a local private hospital – Netcare Blaauwberg in Cape Town, she found the courage to start an online store selling bags and accessories. Surprisingly, the stock was sold out in one day, which made her realise that the business had great potential and that it could be lucrative in the future. To date, she is a flourishing boutique owner with a flair for fashion.

“When I could no longer manage the demands of both my work, the business, being a mother and wife, I decided to resign from my job. I had to make a choice to venture into business on a full-time basis, seeing that it was growing beautifully. So, I started customising clothes and restructuring my business such that walk-ins and other businesses in clothing could also buy in bulk from us,” says Siyamthanda.

This bold move gave birth to L’mad by Celeste, a clothing boutique that offers a wide range of customised clothes for infants, kids, women, and men. They offer customers a choice of buying from their customised catalogue or tailor-made. Their custom-made clothes vary from street swag, African print, urban, simple, elegant and luxurious garments. L’mad by Celeste are always on the edge of the latest trends. You’ll find an eclectic mix of designs for any occasion.

Siyamthanda is a fashionista in her own right who is as dashing and colourful as the wardrobe she designs and curates. With her collection, you can expect remarkable cuts, fascinating prints that are reasonably priced. She has a keen eye for fashion and her fearless style and boldness in her creations are what make her brand stand out.

Siyamthanda has also expanded her business and has established a section where they customise school and work uniforms, homeware from beddings, curtains, cushions and also manufacturing these items for other shops.

“I aspire to be a very successful entrepreneur who will inspire and help other entrepreneurs one day. I have so many ideas written on my diary that I would like to turn into business ventures someday in property and logistics. For now, I’m focusing on learning more and building my own business. I am firm believer that with God on my side, nothing is impossible in life! Looking back, I have come a long way and I’m grateful about the decisions I’ve made. Moving forward, I see the light at the end of the tunnel, and with time, patience, perseverance, focus,  I am surely getting closer to my destination,” she concludes.