By: J. Ebrahim
Fashion Week is amongst the many prestigious events that São Paulo hosts along with other world-renowned fashion capitals such as Milan, London, Paris and New York. The 45th Edition of São Paulo Fashion Week was held between the 21st and the 26th of April at Pavilhão das Culturas Brasileiras.
Designers, models, influencers, and guests were welcomed both by the paparazzi and the many fashion-enthusiasts present, who appreciate and love the language of fashion.
On the 25th of April, Salinas showcased its latest collection, including an attention-grabbing assortment of simplistic and fresh beachwear. The next shows were by Beira and Cotton Project, featuring comfortable and earthy tones for everyday wear. The main show was by designer Lino Villaventura, where he exhibited his stunning, avant-garde and futurist collection. His design of the garments was extended all the way to the makeup of the models, as well as his choice of the music being played. The show concluded with a standing ovation in appreciation of the talented designer, who articulated his vision flawlessly. The evening closed with the show by Apartamento 03, whose design contrasted with the warm tones of the decorating Kashmir carpets. The lighting created the perfect ambiance for the different designers and captured the imagination of all!
During the intervals between shows, I met with two incredibly talented, renowned African designers, Chesney Williams and Tayla Shan, the cofounders of AFI Privé (African Fashion International), which curates and retails the finest African fashion. AFI Privé, which originated in Johannesburg, South Africa, “work[s] with African artisans to create pieces infused with style and heritage”. Their love and passion for fashion is clearly shown through their works, as they fluently “translate the continent into tangible fashion pieces,” creating works of art.
Williams and Shan showcased their collection at South Africa Fashion Week prior to coming to Brazil in order to get inspired and “experience the fashion and culture of Brazil”. When asked about what motivates them to become designers, Williams said that she loved how fashion makes people feel, allowing you to express your style. Shan added that she fell in love with fashion when she realized how you could create something great out of a piece of fabric. Their thoughts on the São Paulo Fashion Week was that it was “a very eye-opening experience, seeing the different culture[s] and how they interpret it into their fashion.” Overall, their thoughts on Brazilian Fashion were: they “love how they use their fabrics, taking something simple and making it into something amazing by creating their own textures and flowing silhouettes”.
South African influencer, freelance art director, and stylist Tinuke Eboka, along with GQ South Africa’s best dressed man, and founder of Afrocentric Gentleman Menzi Mcunu also attended the São Paulo Fashion Week. During an interview, Mcunu expressed his thoughts on fashion, stating that “style with substance is important. (…) It’s taking yourself and celebrating your heritage, culture and identity and being proud of who you are in that sense”.
São Paulo Fashion Week was a melting pot of people from a variety of ages and nationalities, who showcased their personality and uniqueness through fashion. From the words of Coco Chanel, “Fashion fades, only style remains the same.” What’s your style?
South African designers and influencers mentioned: