A fashion first for South Africa as New York Fashion Week’s finest were showcased at Cape Town Marriott Hotel Crystal Towers on Friday 11 October 2019. A global influx of world leading designers took to the catwalk at the inaugural New York Runway ZA.
The Red Carpet Creative Production in collaboration with Runway Prestige New York drew together the rich fashion cultures of the Big Apple and the Mother City under one roof. “A spectacular display of fashion luminaries” marks Red Carpet Creative CEO, Jade Allen. “We are honoured to have had the opportunity of presenting this first-ever collaboration on African soil. A cross-continental amalgamation of artistic expression, merging global fashion forward visionaries with varying style articulations.”
New York trends tended towards an eclectic diversity of styles, colours patterns and fabrics, commencing with a showstopping opening by acclaimed celebrity fashion designer, Michael Lombard. Using the highest grades of leather sourced from around the world Lombard vaunted Neo gothic eccentricity in bold designs with drastic angles, elaborately studded and embellished with space-age accents and accessories. “My collections are geared to make you feel you’re living your best life!”
Alluring Afro-centric attire for the successful businesswoman was next up by Else Hardjopawiro of VanElse. An integrated flavor of African and Pan African prints and patterns embedded within the sophisticated modern pieces with tailored pleats adding hints of Avant Garde expression. “By Accentuating certain parts of the female body makes my design radiate a feminine power” comments Hardjopawiro.
Color-blocking the runway was the House of Honee with electric tones of type peak, zesty lemon and blueberry, interspersed with metallic ensembles for a buoyant, head-turning juxtaposition. “I prefer the eclectic approach to define the bodies in a couchant and playful manner” adds Honee
The final showcasing NYC designer, Henry Picado for ESTE & CHLO, escalated couture elevation with his elegant evening-wear ensembles, including his piece designed for Lady Gaga. Integrating classic and contemporary hand-crafted garments articulating bespoke expression inspired by the glamour of Hollywood. Picardo explains: “Fashion is an art and we must find our own masterpiece.”
Representing the forefront of local fashion, capturing summer with captivating prints on soft-flowing fabrics, was BeachCult by Joanna Hedley. Her latest Midnight Safari collection featured the Prowling Leopard print by Emijl De Kock in a series of luxe swim and beachwear attire for him and her. A portion of the proceeds of the Prowling Leopard print are donated to the Endangered Wildlife Trust to help protect the precious animals of Southern Africa.
Delicious, citrus, floral notes, with long duster coats over skintight lycra with Crepe, linen, silk and feathers! “It’s everything you need to kick off the summer season” says Malcolm KLûK of KLûK CGDT commenting on the duo’s new fruity fabulous assortment. Wide culottes and the boxy dresses, oversized bows form 1980’s Dallas and Dynasty style with 2020’s styling. “Bigger, bolder and brighter” adds partner Christiaan Gabriel Du Toit, “think French aristocracy meets eastern European money, trailer park beauty and central park glamping with ghetto cool and suburban swank.”
ZEDMEN boasted bespoke tailored attire for the discerning modern-day gentleman. Comprising Custom-Made Suits from Europe and high-quality shirts cut from the finest Italian and German fabrics. Stand out features include firm collars, front panels and cuffs superior look. “Service, expertise and wonderful shopping experience are what we are all about” denotes ZEDmen representative, Willem Venter.
A grand closing! Modern natural fabrics in elegant and comfortable silhouettes embody Jacques LaGrange’s African Couture Ivory Warriors. Depicting timeliness beauty with natural ivory whites of the African Saharan summer. LaGrange is making his mark with a firm belief in locally produced, sustainable fashion for community upliftment through employment and skills training. “Keep it local and educate” marks LaGrange, whilst pushing quality boundaries to ensure international product standards. “Quality, fit and finish are key.”
Models were provided by FanJam and 3-D Model agencies.
The event was led by world renowned actress and television personality, Bonnie Mbuli as master of ceremonies. Opening to a Quoin Rock bubbly red-carpet arrival New York runway dazzled with celebrity guests including the likes of Project Runway presenter, Noni Gasa; Fashion influencers Lauren Campbell, Sanele Xaba and Tracy Lee Rosslind in capacity of hair curator with her newly launched company, Haze Enterprize.
Celebrity makeup artist, Renee De Wit, added Guerlain French flair and finesse to models and guests alike. And an extraordinary touch – rapper, author and television presenter Deko Barbara-Jessica Wedi, AKA Rouge – took to the runway accompanying her signature track compilation devised for the mega reveal of the new Castle Lite 250 ml.
With its new, stylish and sophisticated bottle shape, the extra cold market-leader, Castle Lite, partnered with New York Runway ZA showcasing its latest bottle design innovation. Says Brand Director, Silke Bucker: “Castle Lite always prides itself in being a premium brand. To that end, the brand has become renowned for introducing new and shape-shifting innovations that speak truth to the brand’s narrative. With our unique and attention-grabbing reveal, which aims to amplify the brand’s extra cold and innovation credentials, on a premium platform such as the New York Runway ZA, we aim to position Castle Lite as a category leader!”
Cape Town Crystal Towers Marriott Hotel was alive with vibrant up-beat ambience layered with cool Ibiza style beats by DJ Anthea Scholtz followed by runway master music curator, Dino Moran who also took the party into the early hours of the morning at the Quoin Rock VIP Wine bar. Intermittent entertainment interludes ‘broke the ice’ with exquisite aerial and floor dance acts by Tulu Entertainment and Jesyka Sham coupling the big reveal of Castle Lite’s new premium 250ml.
Delectable canapes and bowl dining provided by Crystal Towers culinary architects. Refreshment stops splashed throughout the venue, offering an ice-cold Castle Lite experience – Designed Extra Cold! Quoin Rock’s double gold award-winning MCC and wine bars. Copeland Rum and Gin Island Bar, Coco Safar coffee bar and Happy Culture Kombucha and Sir Fruit Juice requenchments.
Activations included an interactive Guerlain makeup beauty bar, Kush Kolour nail station, Curl Connection and Black Roots hair bars, Life Day Spa Century City tranquility lounge with hand, neck and shoulder massages for guests to take a moment to sit back and unwind, along with Coach Cologne and Azzaro Wanted Women spritz stations.
Gorgeous gift bags filled with Gaia Cosmetics organic body products; a full range of hair products from Curl Connection and Black Roots Hair; oil and varnish from Kush Kolour together with a range of other vouchers from Life Day Spa, Coco Safar and Lou Lou’s, sample products from Guerlain, Azzaro and Coach and more.
Five-star Cape Town Marriott Hotel Crystal Towers is centrally located in the heart of the Century City urban hub, set beside the palm-lined canal and boasts majestic views of Table Mountain. The multi-faceted venue emanating contemporary design and modern sophistication formed the quintessential space for this global fashion calendar event.
Premium VIP ticket holders had the opportunity of staying over at the hotel for an elevated luxury experience. And guests commuting home were encouraged to leave their cars at home and Uber safely and in style. In addition to traveling in comfort, riders will have access to Uber’s in-app safety features, such as GPS tracking, 24/7 phone support, In-App emergency button and Trusted Contacts – ensuring guests have one thing less to stress about and ensuring their night out is filled with responsible choices.
Technical production was spearheaded by SA’s premier technical supplier – Gearhouse SA InHouse AV – will provide the audio-visual excellence, captured through the lens of Volt Africa and Nab Media.
A portion of the ticket sales is being donated to the African Wildlife foundation. The African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), is the leading international conservation organization focused exclusively on Africa’s wildlife and wild lands. Since its inception in 1961, the organization has protected endangered species and land, promoted conservation enterprises that benefit local African communities, and trained hundreds of African nationals in conservation—all to ensure the survival of Africa’s unparalleled wildlife heritage.