Every Fashion Week is an opportunity not only to see and be seen and interact with the local fashion community, but to also to acquaint ourselves with the latest local fashion trends. Sometimes is the case of a trend that is uniquely important as it speaks to us as South Africans or it's an interpretation of an existing international trend - either way, it's important to know.
Fashion Weeks in South Africa are not fraught without their own challenges but there's always something to learn. So let's see what this recent SAFW taught us:
A South African fashion week would be incomplete without print - from Rich Mnisi honing in on his expert use of playful prints, to Clive Rundle clashing prints and fabrics haphazardly - print is here to stay. What we witnessed here was a borrowing of SS18 punchy colour coupled with artful print styles.
Tailoring came to the foreground with atypical details like asymmetry, fluid silhouettes and high-low hems. MmusoMaxwell typified this runway trend by incorporating a handful of their signature unorthodox technical details.
Undeniably red was the colour of fashion week. Solid crimsons played across many designer’s palettes particularly from Erre - who are known for their monochrome fashion - who updated their aesthetic with an inclusion of rich red hues.
Bigger proportions, sweeping skirts, extended sleeves, wide trousers and all-around drama was a unmissable theme for most of the collections showcased. Mantsho exemplified this trend with cinched waists holding mountains of fabric and embellishments. When Irina Stetco's first look came out with her extraordinary headwear, you could feel that punches would not be pulled.
As we've previously seen at AFI Johannesburg Fashion Week black and white again came across the runway. Ever popular and versatile black and white was favoutire for designers like Judith Atelier, Outerwear and Fikile Sokhulu.
Long Live The Belt Bag
Belt bags continue their seemingly immortal reign as the go-to fashion accessory especially for men with a bevy of menswear designers featuring the it bags in abundance. Artclub and Friends' printed belt bags were a statement accessory and must-have for any fashionista wanting to update their look with a little streetwear flair.
If anything was learnt at SAFW for AW19 was that outwear doesn't have to mean boring. Coats were colourful at Danielle Frylinck and beaiutuflly printed in florals at Thebe Magugu and Clean and minimal at Mmusomaxwell.
It's In The Knitwear
One big trend of the event had to be creative knitwear with designers from Ode to Russian designer Helen Rodel giving us vibrant knitwear pieces or knitwear that was unconventional with asymmetry and playful proportions
Black Coffee, Amanda Laird Cherry and Keys Fashion are just three of the many designers that brought a a welcome dose of romance and impact through the use of layered and dreamlike tulle. Amanda Laird's Cherry cerebral use of the traditionally feminine fabric was noteworthy and wonderfully unexpected.
Feeling Sky Blue
Lastly we noticed sky blue being used in a few designer's collections like Thebe Magugu and Cindy Mfabe. The bubblegum-friendly colour added a different sort of contemporary dimension to winter dressing which felt both fresh and trans-seasonal.