Gale-force winds during the scheduled Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town 2017 (MBFWCT17) in March nearly blew away the hopes of about 40 designers, after a full 24 hours of shows had to be called off at the main venue, a marquee in Camps Bay.
The African Fashion International has proved how resilient it is by joining forces with the best creatives in the industry for the triumphantly successful rescheduling of the outstanding shows on 7 and 8 April.
For designers, being prepared for the fashion shows is rather like an Olympic athlete preparing for a final – finding that the event is postponed is potentially devastating in business and creative terms.
Cape Town-based designer Stefania Morland says the rescheduling initially “took the wind out of my sails. Then we got to the new venue – and I loved it!”
Johannesburg-based designer David Tlale, whose Interns’ programme also showed at the rescheduled event, agreed that “the new venue and the energy there were really amazing.
The space is beautiful – the industrial feel is very global, exactly the direction we should be taking.”
Cape Town Fashion Week showed just how much style the Mother City has to offer to the fashion world and that we too can be taken as seriously on the runway as many of the “well known” fashion capitals like Paris or Milan.
With trendy fashionistas everywhere, an amazing venue and decor and lets not forget the copious amounts of great food and drinks flowing it was bound to be a fun filled fashion evening.
#MBFWCT17 showcased over 20 different designers all with their own unique aesthetic but there were five that just stood out…
1. Orapeleng Modutle:
The Autumn/Winter collection by Orapeleng Modutle was an absolutely beautiful display inspired by a “Rose Garden”.
The collection transported viewers to a royal garden wedding and he executed that intention perfectly.
The garments luxurious floral appliqués were contrasted by the beaded detailing, setting off the tone for a perfect garden wedding.
The Collection offers classic styles for brides as well as the bridal party.
Feminine, floral and flowy, Orapeleng Modutle Style Avenue started the show with strains of a string quartet…
…in a cloud of powdered blue with beautiful beading and origami floral hair detailing.
Bold, floral prints followed with dramatic two pieces and sparkly gowns.
It was such a beautiful sight with a relaxing ambiance that honestly made one feel as if you were gazing into a seraphic garden…
If you’re a lover of a well made and impeccably tailored suit; then Carducci is one show you have had to have been at.
The Carducci brand started off the show with an inspiring video and voice over on how much time, effort and love goes into created their pieces.
Sourcing high end fabrics from places like Italy; it is evident in the quality of clothing showcased that night.
The Carducci show looked as if each male model had just stepped out of the streets of Milan.
The inspiration for this Collection is the longevity of tailoring and weaves the story of how tailoring has evolved in South Africa.
“The collection can be described as an ode to the artistry of tailoring through the ages, and showcases modern styling with traditional tailoring”.
Ami Yomekpe, the multi-faceted Ghanaian designer and CEO and founder of Afro.Mod.Trends is the creator behind the Art Deco African inspired collection.
Her latest Collection, entitled ‘The African Gatsby,’ represents the imagined idea of a Gatsby party in all its glamour and splendour set in the 1920’s, with a modern African twist.
Featuring African inspired fabrics from Printex Limited, this Collection displayed the silhouette of the feminine form with luxurious attention to detail.
Last night was all sorts of AMAZING! The African Gatsby is here!!! #mbfwct17 @Regrann from @littlemisslouch – taking us back to the #twenties with an #african twist, @afromodtrends is #elegant and #eclectic 🖤 these #signature #flappergirl #silhouettes fused with #unique #ghanaian prints gave us something we haven’t seen before…and we LOVED what we saw! #africangatsby #aboutlastnight #day1 #MBFWCT17 with @reapink @njabulomkwnz @zebrasquare001 👯🖤🎥👯#capetown – #regrann
4. Stefania Morland
This show was absolutely breathtaking.
The collection was inspired by Frida Kahlo. As we all know, Frida knew that life is theatre, and fashion was her costume.
Stefania Morland brought us beautiful, bright colours and eclectic accessories with an interesting choice of fabric pairing in her feminine silhouettes.
The crowd was in absolute awe when the final gown was brought out with the most exquisite headpiece, that looked like a true piece of Mexicanidad art.
5. MaXhosa by Laduma
Entitled The Coronation of MAXHOSA the collection featured innovative MAXHOSA signature patterns that wowed the crowd.
Setting the scene for the Xhosa monarchy, the show began with a Xhosa libation and a montage of past shows. Opening the show were international supermodels Nina Milner and Ajuma Nasanyana in a plethora of print that Laduma is renowned for.
“The Coronation of #MAXHOSA” AW17 collection.
The collection features signature patterns that have proven to be successful for the brand over the past five years. The collection seeks to demonstrate how a monarchy’s authority wings would dress up like at a contemporary Xhosa coronation ceremony. Long live #MAXHOSA💪🏿!!! Photo by: @merchantsonlong
Showcasing a new addition to his Collection with embellished tracksuit pants, regally displaying authority wings and symbol, it was a visual feast of print.
Demonstrating a Utopian scenario of a contemporary Xhosa monarchy, models stepped out in regal traditional dress to impress.
He had a full house of people watching his show, a 10 minute standing ovation…
Laduma also had the crowd in his hands as they flooded the runway after his show to get a closer look at the garments and to take close up images of the installation.
Adapted from MBFWCT designer alerts