Cape Town Fashion Week always manages to seduce me with ideas of a fairytale fantasy life where everybody looks good and I never get a spot of pigmentation anywhere on my skin. Ever. It comes and goes rapidly – and when it’s all over, the charm is hard to let go of. I was fortunate this year to be invited to David Tlale’s fashion show as he did my dress for my matric farewell and I’ve kept in touch with him ever since. I was also extremely excited to see a friend of mine (Simphiwe Skosana AKA “Sims”) modeling for David Tlale’s new line at his show! I recorded the day as though I was writing a diary entry –
“After days of anticipation, my cell phone suddenly lights up and begins to vibrate. The name displayed on the screen reads ‘David Tlale’. I press my finger against the green-phone icon on the screen and bellow ‘Hello?’ into the receiver, at an attempt to ensure that the man can hear me – but almost deafening him in the process. ‘Hi Raeesa. How are you?…’ He trails off into details about the next day. When he’s done speaking, I gingerly wish him well and hang up. The details which David so graciously provided me with were the details for his fashion show at MBFW. I arrive at the sombre realization that I have no idea what to wear to said fashion show. I then proceed to feel like an idiot when I wake up a few hours too late the following day and I STILL have no idea what to wear. I swear I must be the world’s laziest fashionista sometimes. (There, I admitted it. Don’t chew my head off, please). I am so late, in fact, that I skip breakfast (I NEVER skip breakfast, okay?), and just barely manage to get dressed and do my make up before I’m off to the CTICC. My friend Michelle and I wait in a rather empty VIP lounge before I discover – to my horror – that everybody seems to be departing to the venue on shuttles. I race out with Michelle, get to the outside area where all the shuttles seem to be arriving, and find out that I shouldn’t worry because another shuttle is on its way. Great.
Once I’m at the venue (Nelson Mandela Bridge), I settle myself down and begin to feel much calmer. You know that saying, “No front row, I don’t go”? Well, certainly everybody is seated at the front row for this show, because there is only one row of seats on either side of the runway/highway. Michelle and I scope the area and take out lots of pictures together. I am craning my neck to see where David and my friend Sims might be, and although I can’t make out Sims from any of the other models, I most certainly can’t miss the man in a black shirt with lengthy chains glittering in the distance. The show begins after a while, and we see performers singing and dancing traditional African songs with their drums. I already know that I am going to experience something that will be imprinted on my mind for a long time. As the first model walks down the ‘runway’, I hear a lady to my left gasp the words, “Well that’s certainly bold!” while I excitedly yelp to Michelle, “Dude, those shorts are sick!” (That’s a compliment, for those of you who don’t know). Models come and go, and I am in complete awe of the silhouettes, the fabrics, the charisma with which everything is planned out. When the show is over, I am confronted with a peculiar thought. I find myself wishing that everybody in the globe who regards Africa in synonymity with poverty and filth should see what I’ve witnessed today. We truly are a beautiful nation.
Now, did I get all that from just a fashion show? Indeed, I did. See, whether we choose to believe it or not, fashion is sewn into the fabric of our everyday lives. When we make the decision not to wear that tee shirt with those jeans, or to wear our hair in a certain manner, we are expressing our individuality through fashion. As long as we wear the clothes we prefer each day, we are conveying our style to the world. And you may be no enthusiast on the latest trends out there, but even your tepid response to fashion is a statement in itself about your own style. Now to sum this up – what have I gathered from David Tlale’s show???
‘qui est à la mode!’.”
Michelle wore a Boy London cross necklace, Swatch Watch & Ted Baker London bag (from what I recall lol)
You can (kind of) see my Swarovski necklace up close here…
I wore a Forever New dress with brocade detail, Swarovski necklace and earring set, Falke tights, and a vintage clutch.
Sims strutting his stuff!
Mish and blogger Aisha Baker
David Tlale with us