Fashion devotees can look forward to a modern ramp that welcomes new designers, bridal couture and a CSI initiative to make children smile
16 July 2015 – African Fashion International (AFI) promises that Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2015 will set the trail ablaze with exciting new developments and enhancements to one of South Africa’s most anticipated fashion events of the year.
New designers showing for the first time, the launch of bridal couture by David Tlale and a corporate social investment (CSI) initiative that will warm the hearts of fashion friends are just some of the many new additions Fashion Week guests can look forward to this year.
AFI introduced these exciting highlights and revealed the collection of designers participating in this pinnacle of fashion excellence at an exclusive media event hosted at the luxurious, The Table Bay Hotel.
“We always look to provide a platform for up and coming designers to enhance and drive their careers in fashion. This year two new exceptionally talented designers, Goose Homme Prorsum and XIPIXI, will take to the ramp for the first time to launch their Spring/Summer collections,” says Sizwe Nzimande, group marketing executive of African Fashion International (AFI).
“Mercedes-Benz has now been involved in the world of international fashion for two decades, with the number of alliances and initiatives growing continuously. For Mercedes-Benz South Africa, the partnership with AFI and in particular for the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town is the ideal platform to showcase the modern luxury that our products embody,” says Selvin Govender, Marketing Director Mercedes-Benz Cars, South Africa.
“Trend-setting design, pioneering innovations and modern luxury are firmly embedded in Mercedes-Benz’s DNA. The parallels between fashion and cars are obvious, because the design process for both requires creativity, the highest levels of craftsmanship and technical expertise, but also courage if you want to establish yourself outside the international mainstream,” he concludes.
As the new home for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town, The V&A Waterfront’s The Watershed and North Wharf will welcome these two new designers as they open the event together on Friday 30 July 2015 at 17h00.
Goose Homme Prorsum sets out to master the art of comfort by instilling sophistication in street style and smart casual men’s clothing. The label offers a complete trend-focused collection inspired by rich Italian culture, infused with the brand’s interpretation of the ‘African Dream’.
XIPIXI means ‘cat’ in Southern Mozambique’s Shangaan language, home of the label’s creative director Antonio Macheve Jr, and refers to the universal colloquial nickname for men. XIPIXI ‘aims to give the international gentleman the opportunity to confidently express himself with aesthetically fine garments and accessories, primarily using genuine African fabrics from Southern and Western Africa, particularly from Mozambique and Mali.’
The label has already released three collections over the last three years, with its fourth collection, entitled ‘Chamanculo’, named after Macheve Jr’s home suburb in Maputo, showcased at the Oxford Africa Conference recently.
Hot on everyone’s lips is the news that David Tlale has created a show-stopping bridal collection that he will unveil on Saturday 1 August 2015 at 10h00. Having taken Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York and Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Paris by storm, the organisers are extremely proud that David Tlale will launch his first bridal collection at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town.
Renowned for his undeniable knack for showmanship, his elaborate designs and his defiance of convention, Tlale’s first bridal collection is sure to remain true to his principles of couture that embody beauty without pretense, shunning harshness for poise and grace.
“We will also reveal an inspirational CSI initiative by renowned swimwear designer Dax Martin, which shows great commitment to our country and its children,” says Nzimande.
Proving that at the heart of fashion the most beautiful thing you can wear is a smile, designers Dax Martin and Gayle Johnston have partnered with Operation Smile to bring hope and smiles to young children with cleft palates and cleft lips. Clefts are the fourth most common birth defect in the world, with babies born with this deformity having twice the odds of dying before their first birthday. However, a surgery that takes as little as 45 minutes and costs approximately R5, 500 can change a child’s life forever.
To help the many families that cannot afford the corrective surgery to save and change their children’s lives, Martin and Johnston have designed an exclusive active wear collection that Operation Smile will sell to raise funds for surgeries.
“We will be using our swimwear show at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town to launch this initiative, which will see a range of co-branded active wear inspired by the swimwear show – made available to consumers in South Africa and abroad via Operation Smile’s website. All profits acquired online, from the sale of the active wear, will contribute to funding Operation Smile’s initiative,” he says.
Adding to the excitement on the men’s fashion front is the wonderful news that Leigh Schubert a well-established designer of women’s wear, will be introducing menswear to her collection for the first time at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2015.
Schubert started her own signature label in 2002 after years of working in the commercial retail and manufacturing industry, and has achieved great critical acclaim for the collections she has showed in South Africa and Australia. Her collections for men and women will show a heavy Asian influence with graphic monochrome prints and Japanese shapes, softened with draping, birds and flowers, and hardened with blacks and Rock ‘n Roll elements. Schubert will show her collection in collaboration with Ruff Tung at 19h30 on Saturday 1 August 2015, at The Watershed.
“Our aim is to always thrill our customers with new must-have wearable pieces,” says Schubert. “We’re including a menswear collection in response to the numerous requests we’ve had from our clients’ husbands, who have long admired the timelessness of our previous collections.”
Tickets prices for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town range between R100 and R250 depending on the show and can be purchased at Webtickets (www.webtickets.co.za). The official schedule for Mercedes-Benz Cape Town Fashion Week 2015 is:
Thursday 30 July 2015
17h00 – Goose Homme / Xipixi at The North Wharf
18h10 – Marianne Fassler at The North Wharf
19h20 – Stefania Morland at The North Wharf
20h30 – Habits at The North Wharf
21h30 – Adriaan Kuiters at The North Wharf
Friday 31 July 2015
18h10 – Lalesso at The North Wharf
19h20 – Michelle Ludek / W35T at The North Wharf
20h30 – Dax Martin at The North Wharf
21h45 – Ruald Rheeder and Craig Native at The North Wharf
Saturday 1 August 2015
10h00 – David Tlale at an offsite venue to be confirmed
15h00 – Lazulu / Imprint at The North Wharf
16h00 – Danielle Margaux / Lara Klawikowski at The North Wharf
17h10 – AFI Next Generation at The North Wharf
18h20 – Tart / Shana at The North Wharf
19h30 – Leigh Schubert / Ruff Tung at The North Wharf
20h45 – KLûK CGDT at an offsite venue to be confirmed
About African Fashion International
African Fashion International (AFI) presents African fashion and creative talent in a manner that makes fashion from the continent globally relevant and ensures that the world has market access to African product and design. Through the organisation’s promotion, curation and support services, AFI ensures that the international community responds positively and commercially to African-designed products that are readily available, unique and on-trend.
Through its various Fashion Week, Incubation and Retail Platforms, AFI opens up the continent to commercial projects, both locally and internationally, increasing the geographic spread and market access to the continent’s design equity, fashion apparel, accessories and crafts.
AFI showcases the best designers from the continent, offering them access to the domestic and international market share, while also growing a platform meant to support the sustainability of the African fashion industry through job creation. AFI also remains committed to growing a new legion of designers through its Incubation Projects Fastrack™ and Next Generation programmes.