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A Peep into Some of South Africa's Hottest Designers



April 25, 2007.



By Belinda Otas



From its early days when it was hosted in a tent on Johannesburg's Mandela Square with little over 17 designers; many of them unknown to the local media and consumer or the international fashion watchdog. Today, the Sanlam South Africa Fashion Week is one of the most celebrated Fashion Week on the Calendar in Africa with international recognition of its designers.


In keeping with its trend of hosting two seasonal each year, this year, the Sanlam South Africa Fashion Week (SSAFW) hosted its first Autumn/Winter collection.


Lucilla Booyzen explained the new addition to the calendar as, “If you consider international fashion calendars and markets, there have always been two fashion weeks per annum – Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter”


She said: “Having worked with South Africa’s top designers since the inception of fashion week 10 years ago and by fully exploring the idea of a winter collection with these designers, we believe that the next step in the progression of SSAFW is for our designers to add a Winter component to their annual showings.”


She also believes that "by expanding SSAFW’s focus to now include Winter, we will be getting closer to realising our ideal of sustaining and building local brands whilst at the same time equipping designers with skills, experience and knowledge to compete in international markets.”


The Winter Collection had an array of designers, who showcased a highly focused, pared-down range of items in their individual collection, making it a signature capsule collection for the two day event.


Designers who showcased their collection at the inaugural SSAFW Winter Collection were Abigail Betz, Amanda Laird Cherry, Jacques Van Der Watt for Black Coffee, Bongiwe Walaza, Clive, Colleen Eitzen, Ephraim Molingoana for Ephymol, Julian, Karen Ter Morshuizen for Lunar and Terrance Bray amongst others.



The Collection


Abigail Betz


Known for her signature of femininity, her collection and romance, her collection revealed interplay of dresses in opulent but light weight fabrics.




Amanda Cherry


An evocative range for a new culture and it revealed her ability to traverse the boundaries of multi-cultural tailoring.




Bongiwe Walaza


A collection of afro-inspired elegance in a rich array of brown tones, once again, showing her strong sense of femininity and displaying her signature use of Shwe-shwe fabrics with her innovative and flawless tailoring.





Colleen Eitzen


Collen Eitzen showcased an eclectic signature style which she puts down to inspiration from everything she is surrounded with.







An evocative collection of bespoke menswear for the discerning modern man.






Julian’s collection was sensual and adoring, winter has never looked more glamorous in black and grey.




JJ Schoeman


A showcase that entailed a fusion of African and Euro-centric look.





For more details on the SSAFW Winter Collection, visit:



Belinda Otas is a London-based freelance journalist. She can be reached at belindaotas@thenewblackmagazine.com


Please e-mail comments to comments@thenewblackmagazine.com

Review:Sanlam South Africa Fashion Week

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