Lukhanyo Mdingi x Nicholas Coutts backstage at Generation Africa (c) Trevor Stuurman (113)


SA Menswear Week starts today at the Cape Town Stadium. We’re always excited about going to SA Menswear Week, because besides the fact that its menswear – cue ‘Two & A Half Men’ theme song – the platform has a high concentration of talented emerging designers like no other. From Rich Mnisi, to Julia M’poko, Jenevieve Lyons, Blanc and more – there’s no way you can walk away feeling like spending time at the shows has been a waste. While we anticipate that all the designers we’ve mentioned will blow our socks off, there are additional reasons why we’re particularly excited about the following shows:

CHULAAP by Chu Suwannapha


The label by the man dubbed the Prince of Prints, Chu Suwannapha, makes its second runway outing this season, after a strong debut exactly a year ago. Chu’s mix of Asian influences with the eclecticism of South African street style for his debut collection got the seasoned fashion editor critical acclaim, and earned him a place among the most talked about people in South African fashion – as if his prints weren’t enough of a talking point. Backstage after the show, everyone who is anyone in the fashion community flocked to congratulate him (and to snap selfies, because relevance). Chu had set the bar really high for CHULAAP. What we know so far is that the theme for this season’s show is “Make Art Not War” and it draws inspiration from the African landscape. We absolutely can’t wait for Saturday to see this come together in what we fully expect to be one of the best shows of the season.



Lukhanyo Mdingi x Nicholas Coutts backstage at Generation Africa (c) Trevor Stuurman (113)

Lukhanyo Mdingi is one of our most talked about emerging talents. International media is taking notice, and recently, the designer teamed up with Nicholas Coutts and they presented a collection at Pitti Uomo in Florence, Italy. We will get to see this collection at SAMW, and we’re looking forward to this collaboration between two emerging designers we have all the faith in.




AKJP never disappoint, but after they, alongside Lukhanyo & Nick, caught the attention of globally respected fashion commentators like Suzie Menkes and Guy Trebay (Vogue, New York Times respectively), we’re especially amped and absolutely have to see – in person and in its entirety – the collection they presented in Florence.




The fashion week establishment often sidelines streetwear. This, in my books, is a mistake, but it’s cool, because streetwear brands have a following that I estimate probably beats high end designers in this country by far. The best part about it, is that it’s a loyal following, too. We admire SA Menswear’s push to include streetwear brands on their line-up every season and we’re particularly excited about the Corner Store trio of brands, and what they will come up with in terms of styling their merch for the runway. We saw and enjoyed how Simon Deporess did that last year, and can’t hardly wait to see Sol Sol, 2Bop and Young & Lazy flip it for the ramp.

By Sandiso Ngubane

Images: Trevor Stuurman, Simon Deiner, Supplied

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