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