Ecological sustainability, women’s empowerment, inter brand collaboration and proudly local production investment are some of the dynamic developments that mark SA Fashion Week’s 25th Spring/Summer Collections set to kick off on 28 April 2022.
Twenty iconic names including Ephraim Molingoana for Ephymol, Amanda Laird Cherry and Palesa Mokubung of Mantsho as well as cult Kasi brand, Loxion Kulca, now designed by Olé Ledimo, will launch their 2022 collections to the media, buyers, selected VIP’s and a limited edition of public tickets through Quicket, alongside exciting new stars including 2021 New Talent winner Artho Eksteen as well as Fikile Zamagcino Sokhulu and Sipho Mbuto who both participated in the Fashion Bridges collaboration with Milan Fashion Week last year
Hosted by SA’s favourite social personality, Maps Maponyane, the 24th New Talent Search will again open the event with a line-up of six of the most promising young designers to watch. This year’s contenders are:
• Thando Ntuli - MUNKUS
• Nichole Smith - Ipikoko
• Mikhile du Plessis - MeKay Designs
• Calvin Lunga Cebekhulu - Czene.24
• Sanelisiwe Gcabashe – Gjenelo Couture
• Mimangaliso Ndiko - Sixx6
Other highlights of the first day is the CRUZ COLLECTIVE featuring Sokhulu and Mbuto as well as another new generation notable, Michael Ludwig Studio.
Day two opens with The OPPO COLLECTIONS which brings Artho Eksteen, Ezokhetho, the genderneutral signature, The BAM Collective, and the much revered, Amanda Laird Cherry, together in a celebration of technology and perfection that will speak to OPPO’s Reno 5 mobile phone as the quintessential tool with which to capture the ethos of contemporary living as “the new spectator sport” which happens where everyone, everywhere engages, interacts, captivates and comments. “We are excited to go into our second year of partnership with SA Fashion Week. This is an important partnership for OPPO, as it gives us the space to connect with our customers and it shows our commitment to empowering local talent through our technology to curate a line of sustainably resourced fashion that represents both the heartbeat and heritage of our country. We are looking forward to our second collection and what our designers will come up with this year. For us, it is all about the creative collaboration that translates South African culture into design, which is the essence of what the OPPO brand represents both locally and globally.” says Avashnee Moodley, Head of Marketing at Oppo South Africa.
This is followed by the high-profile trio of Cape Town-based Helon Melon who wowed audiences in 2021 with her all-white, sustainable collection, fashion forward Judith Atelier, an ardent supporter of South African mohair and perennial fashion week darling, Palesa Mokubung of Mantsho. Every follower of ethical fashion will be delighted by the four designers opening day three. Joanna Hedley of BeachCult and Belhauzen, are both Cape Town-based designer brands committed to clean fashion.
BeachCult offers swimwear and apparel with unique fits and one-off prints made from sustainable and recycled techno swim fabric and is designed and produced wholly in South Africa. Equally, Johannesburg-based Kayla Stamboul of Kayla Stam proudly supports women empowerment with a fully female-owned supply chain while Pretoria-based Isabel de Villiers is a body-positive activist who will unveil her current, size-inclusive, collection.
The SAFW Collections Men on Saturday 30 April throws a spotlight on the excitement that is contemporary menswear design in South Africa with the power trio consisting of Ntando Ngwenya who merges conservative and postmodern techniques to create a distinctively new clothing presentation, Thato Mafubedu’s Afrikanswiss denimwear and the much-loved Loxion Kulca brand currently under the baton of Olé Ledimo.
An exciting new collaboration between designers Fabrice Moyo of Franc Elis, menswear brands Floyd Avenue and Ephymol, with KwaZulu-Natal-based and proudly South African shoe manufacturers Eddels, Evox and Hopewell Footwear respectively, marks an exciting grand finale for the Spring/Summer 22 Collection, says SAFW director, Lucilla Booyzen.“This mutually supportive opportunity for synergistic brands to benefit from each other’s creativity, reputation, reach, and of course, budget, is certainly an example of the type of undertaking that would allow us to map creative ways to bolster the creative design industry going forward,” she believes.
The South African Footwear and Leather Export Council (SAFLEC) is proud to be making industry history with its inaugural association with SA Fashion Week this year, says Nerisha Jairaj, executive director of SAFLEC. “We are thrilled to be flying our “Made in South Africa” banner with the debut of three of our most exciting footwear brands for men on this high profile and prestigious platform so that a wider audience may discover the remarkable capability of fashion South Africa.”
According to Booyzen, SA Fashion Week recognises the pivotal role played by its corporate partners, collaborators, and supporters in sustaining the creative fashion design industry.“The SA Fashion Week has engaged with like-minded stakeholders for the past 25 years, both to develop and maintain its position in the industry, but also to leverage and share the spotlight that our platform provides to boost awareness and real bottom line results for our partners.
The investments made over the years for example, by The Mall of Africa, OPPO, CARLTON HAIR, M.A.C. as well as luxury brand Cruz Vodka, have contributed directly to building the creative fashion design industry we have today. It is this investment that has enabled us to unearth, nurture, support, market and sell the designer collections, and which allows a brilliant young designer to become a jobcreating contributor to the country’s GDP,” she says.
Mall of Africa is proud to host the South African Fashion Week (SAFW)’22 Spring Summer Collections, for the third consecutive year, and remains devoted to supporting local South African fashion designers by providing the platform for exposure to the consumer market, says Michael Clampett, Asset & Property Management Executive for Attacq Limited.
According to Vanessa Campbell, consumer marketing manager of M.A.C. the beauty brand’s cult status among South African consumers speaks volumes of the efficacy of its partnership with SAFW. “It has allowed us to position M.A.C at the forefront of trend setting but also as local, relevant, and tailored to the unique needs of the African consumer now.
Maishe Mambolo, brand manager of Cruz Vodka, believes that fashion reflects the culture of a country. “It’s about more than clothing. Fashion becomes the attitude you wear. People in fashion have an appreciation of art, design, and culture with an affinity for beauty and Cruz Vodka reflects these values. The brand’s return to SAFW for Spring/Summer 2022, marks the renewal of a valuable and bold partnership that celebrates a shared love of fashion and the avant-garde and allows Cruz Vodka to express its connection with the world of creation, it desires to re-write the rules, to inspire, to experiment and to invent,” he says.
The SAFW’22 Spring Summer Collections will be showcased from 28 – 30 April, Parkade G5, Entrance 24.
Information on each designer can be found on www.safashionweek.co.za. along with biographies and contact details.