HERITAGE DAY GIVEAWAY

Wednesday, September 19, 2012



What's your fashion heritage?  This is the question 36 Boutiques, South Africa's most popular online fashion boutique is asking ahead of this year's Heritage Day on 24 September.  I like this campaign. It's paying homage to the fact that, in the words of Trend Forecaster Li Edelkoort, Africa is the next big destination for creative inspiration in fields like decor, fashion, business and textiles.  In the next ten years, the world is going to be investing in an Africa it was too quick to view as a place of entropy in the past. Finally.  

Our own introspection as a continent begun a few years ago with brands like Sun Goddess referencing traditional Xhosa silhouettes in their designs; there was also that craze in a few years ago where 50% of designers at Fashion Weeks were using Shweshwe fabrics which is actually of German heritage (Ijarumani).  By the mid 2000's labels like Lalesso were using Kenyan cottons and fabrics and most recently, designers like Laduma Ngxokolo with his incredible Maxhosa Xhosa inspired knitwear and Loin Cloth and Ashes wax print clothing are gaining some international adoration.   

On their recent visits to South Africa, fashion icons Solange Knowles and Yukimi Nagamo of Little Dragon were proudly wearing Loin Cloth and Ashes, Babatunde and Maria McCloy products - all made out of African Wax Prints and Tanzanian fabrics.  Our moment has arrived and it's high time to embrace it if you're too afaid to ''look different''. I hate it when we wait for the rest of the world to see value in the things that we take for granted and then we suddenly start taking ourselves seriously.  Our country is blessed with 11 different languages and countless cultural groups which are abundant in beauty and heritage.  

Sorry this is such a long post, I didn't mean to be so wordy but it got to me.  So the whole point to my epic poem is that 36 Boutiques is currently running a Heritage Campaign where they have special deals on local labels that proudly display their heritage at first sight.  Check out their site for some sweet deals on clothing and accessories from Lalesso, Loin Cloth and Ashes, Jeanine Binnerman, Island Lily and Jin Jin.  That's if you are a member. If you're not, please get onto the site and sign up for shopping. 

If like most of us your purse is looking rather thin because pay day is ONLY next week, then you might want to enter this competition for a R1000 gift voucher from 36 Boutiques.  It's simple. What does Heritage day mean to you.  Inclusion of the word braai in your response results in immediate disqualification.  Bonus points for any fashion references.  Leave your answers in the comments section please.  Here is 36 Boutiques' website www.36boutiques.com 

10 comments:

Ms Tanya said...

Finding myself astonished @ this...Heritage Day! Wow...Being young and recently found myself so intrigued by the evolution of fashion itself. The shift to Africa has started and I've been about catching vibrant prints that have inspired the africanvirgin in me, falling inlove with my roots, being an african woman.
Yes, Lots have drawn on international trends for the 'what to wear' 'how to wear' 'when to wear'...think about it, "there's so many ways of wearing a 'Duku' (a cloth worn by women around their head, mostly to show respect), which is one of the most fascinating part of not only my clan The Zulus' but of so many others.
And now, oh boy its Africa on the world stage especially on this day, it means showcasing the best of the best prints yet!, the cultures, the traditions followed, the food!! Traditional dishes from places like Congo, Ivory Coast, Khenya are found all over our exquisite restaurants serving the most breathtaking meals with ancient african receipts, it will bring with it an explosion of music, art, dance, lifestyle and destinations only found in hidden leaks of unfolded concave's all over this continent. Heritage day is mere reminder of lessons instilled in us, where we are, what we've got to offer, what we've got to teach, Ubuntu, Batu pele, oneness, the rainbow nation, that's what I was taught in school and carry that with me as my elders lead. Embracing the differences, Humble down in a show of respect. That time of the year to boost and pride my uniqueness! That's what This Upcoming Heritage Day means to me :)

Ms Tanya said...

Finding myself astonished @ this...Heritage Day! Wow...Being young and recently found myself so intrigued by the evolution of fashion itslef. The shift to Africa has started and I've been about catching vibrant prints that have inspired the africanvirgin in me, falling inlove with my roots, being an african woman.
Yes, Lots have drawn on international trends for the 'what to wear' 'how to wear' 'when to wear'...think about it, "there's so many ways of wearing a 'Duku' (a cloth worn by women around their head, mostly to show respect), which is one of the most fascinating part of not only my clan The Zulus' but of so many others.
And now, oh boy its Africa on the world stage especially on this day, it means showcasing the best of the best prints yet!, the cultures, the traditions followed, the food!! Traditional dishes from places like Congo, Ivory Coast, Khenya are found all over our exquisite restaurants serving the most breathtaking meals with ancient african receipts, it will bring with it an explosion of music, art, dance, lifestyle and destinations only found in hidden leaks of unfolded concave's all over this continent. Heritage day is mere reminder of lessons instilled in us, where we are, what we've got to offer, what we've got to teach, Ubuntu, Batu pele, oneness, the rainbow nation, that's what I was taught in school and carry that with me as my elders lead. Embracing the differences, Humble down in a show of respect. That time of the year to boost and pride my uniqueness! That's what This Upcoming Heritage Day means to me :)

Thando said...

***This is NOT a competition entry***

You raised a good issue here one that disturbed me from the day of its inception, the Braai Day thing is such a distraction, who ever came up with the idea really killed the soul of heritage.

A part of me sometimes believes that it was deliberate act of killing Heritage Day (I like conspiracy theories... lol).

I didn't think it would catch on but it did. I guess its up to us to remind every one what Heritage day is all about.

I guess this competition is a good start.

** What I have personally observed is that the most successful nations are the ones that are in touch with their Heritage.

MsUndersin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MsUndersin said...

Growing up Ive never had any understanding of what Heritage Day is, or all about. Being born on the 23rd of September I always saw it as "The Government respecting my birthday to make the next day a public holiday" naive and dumb if you ask me. But over the years Ive went to the extent of finding out about this holiday that makes celebrating my birthday oh-so great.

Heritage day to me means celebrating the diverse cultural heritage that makes up our country a "rainbow nation". In this case the rainbow does not only refer to the different races we find in our country, it also refers to the rich bright colours that are used by the Ndebele's when decorating their homes, the red ochre that is used by AmaXhosa to colour their faces, the gold bangles that are used by Indians when wearing their Sari's, the colourful patterns you find on Tsonga womens' skirts. It is the day to celebrate the contribution of all South Africans to the building of this country.

And Ive been particularly happy with the way the fashion industry has "borrowed" from all the cultures from the Leopard print vest's which are still very much a trend among Zulu's to the colours that brighten up Ndebele homes.The prints that have been used for decades to convey messages are now interpreted to add playfulness and colour to solid items, the Ndebele abstract prints are a perfect example. The Tsongas and Zulus have been wearing and making statement necklaces, they have not just come up as a trend now. It goes to show how rich and creative all South Africans are, from just looking at the simple things in our culture and heritage.
Colour is something we South Africans love, you often hear us referring to a Sunday lunch as 7 colours.And as such Heritage day draws nigh and my plans to celebrate my birthday are underway, I will sit back and smile, taking in the beauty and wonder that is our country with a clear and full understanding of our Heritage.
Phambili maAfrika

Klodi said...

***This DEFINITELY a competition entry***

My fashion heritage is simply a celebration of the diverse cultural influences that have led to me being the woman I am today.

I love colorful Zulu beads that always add some excitement and texture to any outfit or garment as either an accessory or detail. They always remind me of my gogo and childhood in Zululand.

I was very lucky to attend an international school where I made lots of East& Western African friends. These people really had a fundamental impact on my view of fashion, heritage and our continent. They helped me fall in love with our own prints, exposed me to silhouettes outside of stock standard western shapes and I'm proud to say I owned a peplum top way back in 2002 already!

So needless to say this all left me with a much greater appreciation for the bold, bursting prints of our continent and how we've weaved our heritage into our prints and fabrics.

My favourite local designer has to be Anisa from L.C.A. She always strikes the balance between colour, sophistication and femininity throughout her pieces.

Should I win this voucher it's going straight to an L.C.A. item to help me pucker up until pay day!

ps. Let's not get me started on African food coz we all know we'll be here till next year!

Sonwabile Maqubela said...

I do not have much to say. Heritage Day for me and so many of my friends is not only a reminder of the elements and the quirky (I should stop using that word!) and the not so quirky elements that are an intrinsic in our very nature. I don't believe it is about being Zulu, Sotho or Xhosa at all! Patterns such as the Bushongo from the Congo, resonate with me because my uncle, grandmother or my mother surrounds herself with these artifacts making me, a part of that world. From my ride from UCT in a taxi, through Mowbray, the freshly braided girls coming out of the THOUSAND hair salons, through Observatory, the rastafarian chicks, barefoot laughing away in green, red, yellow and black floor length skirts, all the way to Cpt taxi rank where colourful prints are the order of the day! when I look at models like Alek wek and Iman I find that your Africaness can definitely shine through even the most western of designs! That is my heritage day!

janita said...

As an Afrikaans person in South Africa, my heritage is one of adaptation and invention. My forefathers came to this country and created their own culture, language and art, and also had to adapt or die... As the old saying goes "'n boer maak 'n plan". Although my ancestors played some ugly roles in the history of this country, I'm proud of being one of the very white (I'm a redhead, so I don't even tan) bits in this stew. I think my true heritage is a fighting spirit, delicious and inventive cuisine and poetry and music in a language that first came about with people trying to understand one another better.

It's difficult to pin my culture to fashion, but it is easy to pin my upbringing to fashion. I grew up in the "platteland" with some very stylish parents. They both believed in timeless pieces, and whenever we went to Cape Town, we would spend hours at Habits picking out the "just right" items that my mom would wear for seasons to come. My father also had a surprisingly keen eye for a straight Afrikaans male, and my best fashion pieces were things that he very keenly picked out. My parents taught me the value of "cost-per-wear" and buying investment items. When I was a student, I used to often shop at second-hand shops and modify my own old clothes to make them more "me" and more fashionable. This spirit of inventiveness out of necessity is a signature of being South African, and is something I see around me every single day. (I think the iconic voortrekker "kappie" is a great example of this - the African sun really burns if you are white, and a plan had to be made...) These days, even though my budget is still tight, I've adopted my mom's philosophy of investing in great and unique pieces from SA designers. (My favourites are Amanda Laird Cherry and Colleen Eitzen) It's mainly because the prints, colours, cuts and fabrics just suit me and work in our climate. I like to wear prints and bright colours, not because they are "African" but because they suit me, and I am an African...

Kgomotso said...

Heritage Day to me, should actually be a day of reflection, understanding and pride. I would hope that like myself more of us would use the day not only to dress up in our brightest seshweshwe dresses, but also a day to spend with family, especially our folks, our aunts, our uncles and reflect not only on our collective heritage as a people but also our individual heritage. A day to sit down, make a yummy homegrown lunch, and ASK QUESTIONS. Our heritage is in the people who made us, those before us and they won't be with us forever. So after jacking your Mom's or granny's old kente cloth wrap skirt or those Zulu beads you've beeeen eyeing, ask them who came before them, what they did and who they were. This is what Heritage Day should be for all of us. (kgomotso mokoena @lovekgomsa)

Ms K said...

Great post and I love the outfit and accessories in this picture. As 36Boutiques doesn't ship internationally, I will sadly not participate in this competition.
http://www.africanprintsinfashion.blogspot.com/

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