This morning a close friend asked me why I don’t go by my Christian name, which is an English name I will not divulge, rather than Sandiso. It’s not that I don’t like my Christian name. My momma gave it to me. I love it, but not using it has nothing to do with whether or not I want it but a lot more to do with my own affirmation of my African identity.
I am reminded of this as I try to ponder why people prefer calling this week’s #SkattieFav and her sisters by their last name. Yoliswa Mqoco is one of the absolutely fucking awesome Mqoco Sisters who go by the name Queens of Wilson. I thought they had stopped going by the latter because I rarely see people using it, but this isn’t the case. “Wilson is my late grandfather and the ‘Queens’ part we added because that’s what mom always calls us. So together it’s: The Queens of Wilson. But I think people like calling us ‘The Mqoco Sisters’ more.”
Jokes aside. We initially wanted to feature Yoliswa because fabulous, but after chatting to her via email (she uses heart emojis and things! How fab?) we absolutely had to make a #SkattieFav instead, which is to say a lot because, generally, #SkattieFavs happen to be people we know personally. While we haven’t had the opportunity to meet Yoliswa and her dope sisters Nandipha and Thobeka, reading our email correspondence with her, it’s as if her personality jumped right out of the email and into my heart. What a Queen indeed!
Yoliswa is a student at Lisof, the fashion school, in Pretoria, where she hails from but also often finds herself styling music videos, rich housewives from Sandton and doing some personal shopping. She calls herself a ‘fashion enthusiast’ but still wants to do more!
“My whole life is centered around fashion,” she says. “It’s all I can do and to be honest, it’s all I know. I adopted the term ‘fashion enthusiast’ in the overall description of myself because I think that sums me up quite nicely. I currently want to strengthen my bond with fashion even more because I feel what I do is not enough. I have so much more to give to the South African fashion industry and fashion community.”
Her ambitions include styling entertainers here at home in South Africa and to move overseas, eventually. Social media fame, which she has acquired, was never part of the plan, but it came and she’s embracing it. 5,5K insta-love ain’t no lie! “I never thought it was ever possible. All I wanted to do was inspire women to change their ideologies on personal style through showing my personal style and my relationship with fashion through social media. I didn’t think in a million years that I would have had this much of an effect on people just because of social media. It’s honestly so fucking humbling. Walking in the street having people come up to you telling you how much you inspire them? Jesus! The most beautiful thing to ever happen to me.”
Queen dem gal!
Follow Yoliswa on Twitter and Instagram: yoliswa_xo