This year has proven to be a phenomenal time for South African fashion in terms of creativity and originality. The return of fashion after the pandemic came in strong for South Africa, with both local as well international brands reaching new heights, personal accomplishments and noteworthy collaborations. Below is our 10and5 list of five honourable mentions from this year that have caught our eye:
Thebe Magugu produced a limited edition range of heritage dresses that interpret eight South African official tribes, the Xhosa Dress, Zulu Dress, Pedi Dress, Vhavenda Dress, Tswana Dress, Tsonga Dress, Sotho Dress and the Swati Dress, on a free-flowing crepe Bohemia-style dress with bishop-sleeves and a foulard neckline. The dresses featured Cultural illustrations by Phathu Nembilwi that Thebe Magugu collaborated with. The dresses explored the sentiments of the SA heritage in a distinct way. From the women that modelled the campaign, the ornaments, the props and the colours used in the collection.
The brand name defines itself, in each collective work that is put out by the Maxhosa team, the prints define each article of clothing in a heritage way that represents the brand. ALKEBULAN AW/SS22 Collection takes on the notion of u’Buyel’embo (Back to our Roots), revisiting of our rich ancient history and showcasing how royal Alkebulans would be adorned in the Morden day. Laduma Ngxokolo, the founder of Maxhosa cut and sew techniques are the definitive detail in this collection.
Lukhanyo Mdingi’s SS23 named BURKINA serves as an exploration of new ways of defining textures, although; almost everything in his collections falls within that stereotype. The Burkina SS23 explores textures on a more deeper and intricate level, for this collection Lukhanyo went to Burkina Faso to learn more about the textures and techniques that are used when creating garments. This collection offers a variety of colours that mostly draw inspiration from African flags and intertwine that with his usage of wool and other textures that are originally from Burkina Faso.
The future of streetwear in SA looks a bit shaky right now but there are brands that still hold the premise of that subject matter, Richmanskyf is also one of them. The ‘Skyf Club’ T-shirt is the epitome of streetwear in SA. The reference point is made clear and it is not in hiding that it is a reiteration of the David Fincher film called ‘Fight Club’ logo. Memorable and beautiful to witness, one of 2022’s finest.
Rich Mnisi x Adidas
No matter how cliché it is that most South African fashion houses always try to embed African prints in some of their collections, Rich Mnisi still gets it right whenever he does it. In the collaborative work titled ‘HOMELAND’, a collection that supports a range of sports including running, cycling, swimming, and training. Rich dabbles within the spheres of loud prints that are different but go well together. He merged chaos and noise but blended very well into his clothes, the archival looks and the heritage of the Adidas Brand weren’t forgotten. The pieces put out has Adidas written all over them but also screamed Africanacity all over it.