This year Originally Kasified Clothing has been showing women’s collection starting with the Autumn/Winter collection that they showcased earlier this year at Soweto Fashion Week, which I absolutely loved. but by far this Spring/Summer collection inspired by elements of Art is my favourite.”Not only was it a part of this year’s plans but also because I’ve always wanted to make a womens wear collection since I’ve started showcasing at SFW and other shows. It gives me an ability to tell a story through the style that I’ve created in a more realistic and understandable way” , says Afrika Mabena the designer. He wanted to show his other creative side.
The collection is telling a story of a young woman who loves shopping. A clean example of someone who just got paid, looking all nice and classy, feeling herself and comfortable in her outfit. And all this happens in a mall, heading to her favourite shoe store, to pick up her favourite shoes…the rest of the story is just the imagination of how this fun concept ends. Afrika used lines, shapes and colours. The colour combinations of the outfits was amazing, it was the right amount of black and white and the equally amazing touch of mustard and burnt orange. the stripes and the blocks draw you to the collection and the colours keep you there. I imagine that it was fun for the models to wear these outfits and there is no doubt in my mind that I would have had a blast on the runway. There is nothing more sexy than an outfit that makes a woman looks stylish and still allows her to have fun and I believe that Afrika Mabena achieved style and fun in this collection.
All photos by Eunice Driver
Taking inspiration from the multiple cultures in South Africa, TN Collectiv’s bridal range Collectiv Culture caters for the western woman looking for a modern twist on traditional wedding dresses. Instead of creating looks that already exist, Collectiv Culture has taken what is currently available for brides looking for traditional wedding dresses and reinventing them by using different techniques, finishes and embellishments in order to introduce a new class of traditional wedding dresses. Without completely westernising the dresses, the core aesthetic for each culture was kept without compromising the traditional look so that they can be clearly translated, while staying true to the fashion needs for the modern bride. Part one of the range drew inspiration from the Ndebele, Xhosa, Tsonga, Swati, Zulu and Setswana cultures. Besides having a past working experiences with the all of the women in the bridal campaign, they are beautiful, hardworking and successful women in their own right. Making them the perfect embodiment of the brand and the ideal models for the campaign.
I feel like the collection was specifically made for these ladies as I cannot imagine another person wearing the wedding gowns that they are wearing. Before I was drawn to the dresses, I was first drawn to these ladies and felt that they belong in those dresses and nowhere else. I love that these wedding dresses have evolved with time but there are still embracing our cultures. I think it is safe to say that Africans are moving away from “White Wedding” and I love that. We are beautiful and our cultures are too beautiful, it really warms my heart to see fashion designers like Tuelo Nguyuza showing the African bride that they don’t need to walk down in a white wedding gown in order to be considered beautiful.
Photos by According to Jerri
Accessories: by NtoZinhle Accesorise
My favourite shows at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Joburg was Couture D’Afrique which featured 12 designers from the rest of Africa. I truly enjoyed Senegalise fashion designer Adama Paris‘ show with amazing headwraps and layering like I have never seen before. I loved the patterns and the styling really represents the modern woman that the brand is aimed at. Seeing that collection made me want to get myself a gele and I can safely say that it was one of my favourite collections from the show.
SORAYA DA PIEDADE
Soraya Da Piedade a fashion brand from Angola caters for everyone from women to men to kids. I loved the simple yet sophisticated garments showcased at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Joburg. The kind of woman who wears Soraya Da Piedade is a woman who knows and loves her body, the kind of woman who loves to look great and still feel comfortable and I feel that the collection at MBFWJ16 was comfortable and sophisticated.
Tanzanian menswear brand Sheria Ngowi showed the most amazing suits. I loved the cuts and the choice of colours and the way the colours are mixed together to form a great looking suit. A suit doesn’t always have to be one colour, you need to switch it up and a decide on scandals instead of formal shoes. With this collection Sheria Ngowi showed that a tie doesn’t always have to accompany a suit and that sneakers also complements a suit very well.
CISS SAINT MOISE
What caught my attention about Ciss Saint Moise ‘s collection were the details on the suit. It seems details are what makes Ciss Saint Moise stand out and have always been a signature of the brand. The involvement of Puma brought a new perspective on suits and sneakers and I must say that I have always loved suits worn with sneakers and no ties because it does away with the serious look.
Rwandan brand Haute Baso‘s collection at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Joburg was casual and stylish. The kind of clothes a woman would wear on a date, a family gathering and practically anywhere chilled. i love that you can play around with the garments til you get the kind of look that you want.
All photos by Simon Deiner for AFI
Last night NN Vintage wowed fashion lovers with a star-studded showcase at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Joburg in Sandton. I was eager to see what NN Vintage had in store for us because I have always been impressed by their previous collections. I really relate to the garments and I am definitely the kind of woman who wears and understands NN Vintage. The African Queen trend has really taken over with women all over Africa embracing headwraps and really taking pride in their cultures. NN Vintage keeps up with the times and the collection is modern and played a lot with stripes, grays and a pop of colour just to brighten it up.
What stood out for me is that the showcasing was more than the fact that the Queens are proud of who they are. African queens love each other, they dance together, the have fun together and they generally encourage each other. African Queens uplift each other and provide opportunities to each other. That is what the African Queen trend is all about and I believe that the celebrities who walked for Nhlanhla Nciza’s show cemented the fact that African Queens support each other and they are happy for the other’s successes.
All images by AFI
Nandi Mngoma and Inga Madyibi made their label debut at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Joburg last night in Sandton. It truly was a great collection with lots of colour from the garments themselves and the choice of make-up. It’s a chilled back collection for a woman who loves to look great but still look simple. I loved the collection and the accessories complemented it very well. The Cleopatra inspired wigs were also highlight for many, especially me as I imagined what I would look like in one. It will be interesting to see Nandi and Inga grow as fashion designers because last night they certainly proved that they have the talent.
All photos by AFI
For the second time this year Intern By David Tlale had a show at Mercedes- Benz Fashion Week Joburg and as always the six interns did not disappoint. Comparing their show in March to their show yesterday there was significant improvements and we all expected nothing but the best from them seeing that they are being taught by David Tlale one of Africa’s best designers. One designer who stood out for me was Ntando Ngwenya whose collection was inspired by what he sees as AfroFuturism taking African fashion to the future.
This collection is the highlight of my creativity, staying away from the norm of basic clothing to architectural lines. – Ntando
Ntando says he is taking African fashion to the future and there is a new approach to pattern engineering that he has discovered and that is the seamless front cut. He used sports luxe to put the message accross. The use of lipstick on the male models was simply to re-enforce that in the near future men will be more comfortable with wearing make-up and the beauty industry is also now making beauty products for men. After his internship Ntando plans to go back in to business and improving his brand . With what he has learnt he believes that he stands a chance to stand out in the fashion scene In South Africa.
All photos by AFI
Fashion Design label Hauz of Lenze has released their SS16/17 lookbook and it is all about celebrating women.
As the Spring /Summer season unravels.Hauz of Lenze apologetically tells a story about his SS16/17 collection for the women themed “Enough is my new freedom” he uses fashion to express a feeling or experience that many fear to speak about because of fear of loosing that someone or the ‘What if I told the world’ but on this journey we see how Hauz of Lenze’ uses fashion to mend that caged and broken heart..letting him or her know that there is still love and I mean genuine love out there. She finally finds true love and remarries as the story unfolds.
He shot the door and walked away leaving me bruised…
Shattered and naked.
My self-worth, loyalty was stripped off minute after minute
Until there was nothing left in my personality,
I was almost losing the meaning of being a woman,
My feminity had reached its expiry date.
I felt empty, trapped in a world I called love..
Yet I never forgot about that strong and great woman I was growing to become,
That powerful woman lived inside a soul that had been insulted, emotionally beaten, called worthless names,
Waiting for that day resurrection would knock on her caged soul and set it free
That day when the power of light will cause darkness to lose its dignity,
Then the light will shine through her soul ones again bringing her hope and believe for a better life and a new journey to endless possibilities …
Today I stand next to my possibilities
Because that strong and powerful woman has been reborn..
And saying “ENOUGH” to all these bruises is the only way my new strong,
Powerful me can be separated from the “Darkness” I was ones called
Don’t let loyalty become slavery, let your story inspire and change lives..
ENOUGH is My New FREEDOM
Artists in Africa have been documenting their work in the best way possible. I love what their art does to me when I look at it. They produce art that is easy to relate to us African children and they capture it in the best possible. I have seen so much beauty in the work of these African artists, I have seen a beauty that I would have otherwise missed should I have been watching their subjects with my naked eye. One artist whose painting speak to my heart is Qhamanande Maswana a 24 year old Fine Art graduate from the Eastern Cape whose passion for art began when he was still in high school.
Culture is very much a driving force behind Qhamanande’s paintings, one cannot help but engage with the subjects in his paintings. My favourite painting is of a woman who looks absolutely amazing with flowers as her crown and her eyes are so intense and I feel like I can see what she is seeing even though she is facing the side and her cheek bones are beautiful bandla! Qhama says that he only paints when he is inspired and that he works hard at being inspired. I like that he just doesn’t sit and say today I am not inspired so I will not be painting. You have to get out and seek inspiration even from the smallest of things. Qhama boasts about being different from other artists because his work has a cultural feel to it which is inspired by his young days in the rural areas and he enjoys painting females because he grew up among females and he feels that the body gestures and expressions of females makes it easy to tell how they are feeling at that particular time.
The aim for my art is to engage the viewer with the roots and beauty of black people’s culture in South Africa as it has a modern and spiritual approach which is meant to take the viewer through the daily life of black Africans.I paint only when I’m inspired and I work hard at being inspired every day, if something touched my soul enough for me to paint it, the chances are there is someone out there who may feel the same because I think as an artist it is my job to inspire people What I enjoy doing the most is female portraits it might be because I grew up being surrounded by female siblings. Females, with their gentle, caring features filled with love. Their body gestures and facial expression makes it easy to tell what one was feeling or going through at that particular moment, and those expressions I capture to tell a story through my artworks.- Qhamanande Maswana
Qhamanande Maswana’s biggest highlight was when he was commissioned to do a portrait of Doctor Mangosuthu Buthelezi for the Fort Hare University Centenary celebrations and when he had a solo exhibition at the Arts on the Lain in Berea East London. As a consumer of art I tend to like art pieces that speak to me and pieces that I can relate to in one form and another. Qhama works hard in developing paintings that speak to both him and the consumer of his art and he loves to show the beauty that is in Africa. Part of his painting process goes into researching a specific theme that he wants to create as he does not want to just capture an image but he also wants to give the image life. Tools are also important for the painting process, pen and ink are great for strong detailed lines while oil paints are used to capture colour and form; and fast drying acrylic paints are for projects that need to be completed quickly.” Africa inspires most of my art, the beautiful people, their full lip and thick hair, their amazing skin tone. I am inspired by the strength of the people and I see royalty in all of them, my artwork speaks, not only for me but for people who were long silenced”, says Qhama.
You can order Qhamanande’s work from Qhama Maswana Art
Jenevieve Lyons always leaves us talking after every show and last night’s show was no different. The LISOF graduate has sure came a long way since her AFI FastTrack days. Her latest collection titled Deferential which she debuted last night at South African Menswear Week in Cape Town is all sorts of amazing. She says that the collection plays on the ugly, gender fluidity and juxtapositions. It is the new movement of anti “being” and anti categorization. So basically the collection is about not being and my take on this is that it is not just for men but for women as well. I love the layers and her amazing skill with the cut-outs. It’s a true work of art and that green grass had me looking forward to summer. The garments allow for easy movements and are suitable for all kinds of weather. I love that the kind of person to wear a Jenevieve Lyons creation is one who cares about looking great and is not bothered about what people think is masculine or womanly. The contrast of the colours draws you in and when you thought that was the wow factor, the tailoring and the creativity with the belts and the layering gets you. This is my favourite collection from Jenevieve thus far and judging from the people’s reactions on social media, I am not the only one. Which is a good thing because as a designer your current collection should be better than your last and that is what Jenevieve Lyons has nailed to the T.
All photos by SDR Photo
4 Girls About Girls is a mentorship campaign based in Soweto which was initiated to select a group of girls based in Protea South, North and Protea Glen . The program is designed to empower, educate and develop these ambitious girls through social development and community based projects that will build their self-esteem and self confidence as well as provide them with career assistance. The organisation has been involved in charity drives, old age home visits and fundraising events based around Soweto in collaboration with Protea South Methodist church. Currently, they are having another charity drive in Protea South and have identified a family that they will adopt and assist on monthly bases with clothes and food parcels.The community has also provided assistance with supporting the Nhlapho family with food and clothes. Production company Velocity Afrika has also been giving donations.
4 Girls About Girls was founded in January 2016 by Rephethile a young woman who has a passion for children and has been doing her best to mentor 10 high school student who are part of the program. The organisation will be part of the Student Expo that will take place on the 29th and 30th of July 2016 at the Glen in Johannesburg. As program gets bigger, there will be a need for more mentors and the criteria is quite simple:
+ Demonstrates a positive attitude and acts as a positive role model
+Compassion and genuineness
+ Have sincere desire to construct, empower, develop, build a relationship with mentees
+Have the ability to be a listen and speaker when expected
+Be sensitive to people of different educational, economic, cultural and racial backgrounds
+Ability to recommend alternatives and options
+Willingness to share skills and expertise
The program is for girls who have a clear understanding of their goals, motivated and ready to work at a relationship, be open minded and always willing to learn and proactive. At the moment 4 Girls About Girls could do with an additional mentor who would assist in preparing for potential events and assisting with organizing, planning and conceptualizing to generate exciting activities to allow the girls to engage more and be active more. 4 Girls About Girls vision is to invite more girls around Soweto who believe they owe it to the community to assist and be a leader. The girls have one main goal, the goal to be better and do better than their parents, they want their parents to be proud of their achievements and future plans . They have established themselves as different to the current youth but they’ve accepted their flaws and want to let go to become somebodies in their communities.
Having suffered and lived under the oppression of abuse and violence I always isolated myself from achieving what my heart desired, I was afraid to be at my best and do best, I was so consumed by low self-esteem and lack of confidence without blaming anyone With that being said the critical point that 4 Girls About Girls is sending out is that anything is possible even beyond all the negative situations that any person is forced into, anything is possible when you stay dedicated and passionate. I want these young girls to see themselves in me and even become better at everything they do, I want them to be able to stand firm for what they believe while achieving every little goal they desire or rather aspire to achieve. I want them to be go-getters without limitations or any excuses. I want my girls to inspire their peers and be a reflection of possibilities because I believe in them.- Rephethile
If you want to get involved you can contact the organisation:
Facebook Page: 4 Girls About Girls
Cellphone: 083 507 2758