JOHANNESBURG ‒After seven years away from the glare of the runway spotlight, Mafikizolo frontwoman Nhlanhla Nciza makes a comeback at next month’s Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Jo’burg.
The musician has enjoyed success with her band that saw them pick up prestigious awards including a BET Award nomination.
But now she is focusing her energies on NN Vintage. “I’m relaunching the label. It has always been there, but not in the spotlight.
“We have been through so many things, including recession that affected my business, and with all the money I had I wanted to build it from scratch,” she said.
Nciza said she was now at the helm as a designer and worked with two seamstresses.
“I’ve done all the designs. Sometimes working with other designers they don’t understand the vision.”
Her travels have exposed her to trends that she would bring to the local runway.
“I’ve realised that people are proud of their culture (and) wear their African prints proudly. In South Africa we are proud to only wear tradition to special occasions. South Africans need to embrace African prints and fabrics more. Let’s not wait for Solange (Knowles) to wear print to appreciate it.”
Nciza revealed that when Mafikizolo goes to perform on the continent she stages a private NN Vintage fashion show.
She said this strategy helped to grow her clientele. The collection, called Evolution, is made up of 34 garments and will feature fabric and accessories sourced in Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania and Ghana.
Nciza’s show is scheduled for March 7 at 6.15pm at Melrose Arch in Johannesburg.