Swakopmund-Statuesque beauty Leeandra Katjijenda says she creates her own catwalk dreams, by using her everyday reality of life as an expression of her creativity, instead of waiting for the “perfect” moment to come her way. Donna Collins crossed paths with her in Swakopmund
Better known as “Lulu”, the over 6ft something (in heels) and fashion enthusiast turns heads wherever she goes. Dressed from head to toe in daring trends, she says she is just a simple girl at heart hailing from Ovitoto in the Omatako Constituency of Otjozondjupa region and now living in Swakopmund. Lulu is gifted with the body of a model, dress sense of an international fashion model and looks that blend her Namibian heritage with clothes, hair and make-up straight out of a glossy fashion magazine.
“I was born with a passion for the creative and love dressing up,” says Lulu, wearing a bright figure-hugging orange one-piece costume, ripped cut off jeans, “killer heels” and a zany braided hair style with chunky beads on the strands. From something striking and modern to ethic vogue and trendy chic, everyday’s outfit is different for Lulu, who had her first taste of beauty pageants when she was only six years old, and since then has strutted the catwalks in Canada where she filled her days with modelling.
Influences from her travels to London and Germany have also rubbed off on her eye-popping fashion sense, and Lulu is no slouch when it comes to trying out new styles with funky accessories. She loves to mix and match, saying you do not have to break the bank to look good, you just need to know how to wear your clothes.
“I come up with my own ideas when I get dressed every morning, sometimes wild and sexy other times calm and smooth,” she smiles, “But I am always adventurous and I don’t follow the norm.”
She confesses that her life is all about beauty and fashion, and even though she is not out there in the world modelling for big names, she creates her own unique outfit ever day so when people see her they think she has stepped out of a fashion shoot. “I’m not a vain person, but this is who I am, and I live my life to be happy,” she prides.
In fact, Lulu is your girl next door, who has a day job in a pharmacy, a child who lives with “ouma”, and a humble apartment in the “hood”. But this does not let anything get in her way from turning each day into a fashion-forward moment. So much so that the costume she made for Halloween and wore all day at the pharmacy to greet customers behind the counter, was a work of art, and “great fun putting it together”. Lulu says she is always working on taking herself to the next level, and is going to learn the technique of make-up with beauty tips, as she wants to combine this with becoming a stylist to some of Namibia’s top fashion-conscious ladies.
Meanwhile, Lulu is just going to carry on being her wonderful fashionable self, and believes that the right moment will come along where she will fill her creative dreams to an even more exciting level.