It’s the last day of the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town, and sticking to my routine I’m late once again. No worries though, I’m right on time for the Thula Sindi show. My admiration and respect for this designer goes back quite a bit so I’m rather excited to be going to one of his shows.
Thula only recently returned from Africa Fashion Week in London (That’s actually a thing), so I was intrigued to see what this jetsetter of a designer had in store for us little South Africans. I invited my friend Luke Tyler, an actor who has starred in movies such as Dark Tide, Dredd and recently in Spud 3. We’re both being Librans so naturally we arrive fashionably late, rush into the dark hall, fumble to our seats and try play it cool. We made it just in time and the models started strutting their stuff.
If there’s one thing I took from the show was that ‘it’s all in the details’. The texture was amazing – with lace and embroidery incorporated into the collection. I’ve rarely seen denim and lace work well together, but Thula made it look good. The clothes exuded sexy powerful femininity with outfits that embraced the female form. The collection was the right kind of sexy – you can still look good in clothes that fit well, and show off what you got without revealing too much. The overall collection and show was a good mixture of fun and formal, with great outfits for a hardworking woman.
After the break we went to the next show. We got to our seats and found cute little white boxes on them. I thought “fuck yeah, must be candy”. I was wrong though, in the box was a pair of undies, mesh ones nogal. Well while most were thinking about when they’d ever wear them I was thinking “undies for who? These are my new twerking shorts”. They were from Tart, which reminds me I need to email and thank them for my new booty-shaking attire.
The prints in the show were amazing; they were reminded me of pixelated African prints. The colours were great too – bright blues and yellows brightened up the rest of the grey, black and white pieces. The overall collection had a laidback feeling to it with long flowing maxi-dresses and casual sporty luxe pieces. Despite the relaxed feel to the clothes, there was a definite fierce undertone. It’s like we all know that really nice person but you just wouldn’t want to mess with them y’know. I think Tart played it safe with this collection, but still produced winning pieces.
Up next was Lazuli who told Flair360Fashion they wanted to create an identity of a modern woman; classy and sophisticated with an effortless feel. The mom and daughter trio did exactly that. They produced a collection that was effortlessly beautiful. You know it’s good when you get goosebumps watching a show. Each piece looked meticulously put together and the models looked heavenly wearing them. A lot of soft white was featured, giving an airy and innocent aura to the clothes. One of the many stand-out pieces was an embroided pants suit (you read that right), it was the perfect balance between power and soft femininity. All of this made Lazuli’s spring/summer collection one of my favourites from the Cape Town Fashion Week.
We swiftly moved on to Lalesso which started off with some swimwear that caught us unaware. The clothes soon followed and the prints were banging. The designs were fairly simple, most of them dresses, so the prints basically stole the limelight. The clothes were all very casual, the type of thing you’d throw on after a dip in the pool, or something you’d wear on a leisurely walk on the beach. I have nothing bad to say about the Lalesso collection, they used prints well and the clothes were simple and wearable.
Up until now, I was very disappointed to see empty seats in so many shows. If fashion is so important, and if Cape Town is one the biggest fashion destinations, why aren’t all the shows filled to the max? It’s probably something that the organisers need to work on, but I just felt that with the talent that South Africa harnesses, we need to expose it to more people.
The next show however had all the seats filled, and of course it was because the next designer was Craig Port. I’d recently interviewed him and admittedly fell in love with the man. He is no doubt a legend in the South African fashion industry, and he just cemented this fact with his show.
He told us his collection was inspired by David Bowie after he recently visited an exhibition about the singer in London. Now who wouldn’t be excited after hearing that? I was still with Luke and we missioned our way into the show and got comfy as the show was about to begin.
Perfection! That’s what this show was, pure and utter perfection. Other designers should take note of what goes into a fashion show like this. His monochrome theme ran throughout, the clothes weren’t only trendy for now but also forecasted what will be trendy and the clothes were immaculate. The menswear in particular was great; it was definitely made with the stylish man in mind. The collection was versatile too, with trendy sport luxe pieces and also great formal wear.
The womenswear was fairly simple but definitely on point with monochrome pieces and hints of leather. I am obsessed with a monochrome striped dress that made its way down the runway alongside four other dresses. Overall I loved everything about the collection. Craig is obviously revered in the industry because he deserves it.
As if I hadn’t received enough great fashion for the day, along came Fabiani, locked and loaded and ready to blow my mind. The theme was nautical – one of the biggest trends for men at the moment. The quality of the clothing and the styles were magnificent. I honestly had trouble keeping it together in my seat. I realised a man in a Fabiani suit is a man I can’t say no to. My female perspective might be flawed, but even Luke agreed, the clothes were outstanding. After this show my interest in male fashion has skyrocketed as well as the need for more well-tailored clothing in my life.
My Fashion Week experience had come to an end, I saw fashion I loved and fashion I loathed, but that’s what it’s all about isn’t it? Fashion is creative expression and because we’re all individuals our tastes will differ. Just being surrounded by like-minded people made it a great experience. I will definitely be there next year supporting local talent, being in more awkward situations and reporting back on what’s the latest in the fashion world.
If I could change anything about Cape Town Fashion Week is I’d advertise it more, allow all types of people inside and make sure all shows are filled to the brim, because its events like this that spur the love of fashion in someone. I would also like to see people dressing up more; I didn’t see any ridiculousness which is what one would expect from a Fashion Week. Other than those minor issues, I think everything else was great. I am honoured to be a South African when I get the chance to see such amazing talent being showcased. Well done to all those involved, it was great to be a part of it.