In its 26th year, SAFW continues to stick to its vision for sustainable fashion. The top fashion design platform held its Spring Summer 2023 fashion showcase over the weekend.
SAFW organized with the support of Mall of Africa, Mr. Price, Cruz Vodka, Oppo, Carlton Hair and M.A.C make-up took place from 20th to 23rd April in a series of 11 shows. During the event, 39 collections from different designers were showcased. This top fashion design platform saw designers and models from the neighbouring Mozambique Fashion Week, the I ponti della Moda projects taking part in it.
Director of the SAFW, Lucilla Boyzen said that regional and intercontinental collaboration such as the one with MFW allows all parties to knit networks of beneficial mutual support. Boyzen further stated that they allow the SAFW to share skills and insights, open unexplored business opportunities and untimely, to extend the sphere of their respective creative visions to beyond their familiar borders.
This year’s SAFW’s SS23 saw the return of fashion chain Mr Price as the headline sponsor of the New Talent Search. Boyzen said that this marks another exciting development. This year’s entrants were challenged to demonstrate their talent for print demonstration and unreserved commitment to a sustainable fashion future. “The support of a leading fashion mover and shaker such as Mr Price gives immeasurable impetus to the determination of our new generation of designers to clean up fashion’s act with an unequivocal commitment to sustainable and healthy practice.” Said Boyzen.
Donavan Baney, MD of Mr Price said that the fashion chain has been a long-standing champion for discovering and supporting local designers through Elle Rising Star and their Creative Collabs Design competition series. “As two industry players driven by our love for fashion, we are so excited to partner with SAFW and provide further opportunities to South Africa’s next generation of designers and a platform to amplify their talent,” says Donovan Baney, Managing Director of Mr Price.
The Mr Price New Talent Search 2022 winner, Thando Ntuli , closed off the show with her Isikhathi/ Time collection whilt 2023 entrants saw the likes of Mmabatho Silika of Silika, Kuhle Phumzile Zondo of E Mania and to mention a few.
The value of a designer platform such as SAFW, extends to the industries that are integral to the whole “look and feel” of a given season too, says Booyzen. “The new hairstyle and make-up looks presented on the seasonal collections ramps are equally critical to the serious industry observers.”
According to Boyzen, South Africa is often viewed as the fashion capital of Africa, given its rich cultural can Fashion Week, they have seen this come alive from working with some of the country’s top creative talent. The partnership has enabled us to create opportunities for young designers to access.
SAFW’s commitment to the organic development of the local design industry by developing and introducing new creative talents to the market, is evidenced in the line-up of the five menswear signatures showcased this year.
Founder of MFW, Vasco Rocha, says that collaboration between fashion minds represents a significant chance for sustainable fashion and job creation. “The cross-border regional meeting of fashion minds represents a significant opportunity to advance a responsible and sustainable vision in the development process of the fashion industry in both Mozambique and South Africa. It is an initiative that will undoubtedly help create jobs for young people and encourage entrepreneurship and innovation in our collective industries,” says Vasco Rocha founder of MFW.
Rocha concludes by saying that promoting cultural and creative industries is a powerful way to boost the local economy and empower communities.
“Mall of Africa has had the privilege of hosting the South African Fashion Week for the past three years. In this time, we have been delighted by the exceptional calibre of fashion design talent at its seasonal collections.
We know our consumers are increasingly wanting to express a contemporary, yet uniquely African, fashion identity, and therefore draw enormous reassurance from the prospect of adding many more local success stories like Laduma Ngxokolo’s iconic Xhosa-inspired signature, to our tenant mix,” says Leemisa Tsolo, head of Asset and Property Management – Retail of Attacq Limited, the owners of Mall of Africa.