Between the brilliant dance routines prepared by Melvin’s Dance Studio, to the soulful musical tributes, and stunning local fashion on display from the heart of our South African townships, it’s no wonder that hardly a face in the audience could contain their amazement. The Creative Angels Fashion Benefit (CAFB) 2019 Rainbow Nation Fashion Show took place on Saturday 26 October at The River Club in Observatory, Cape Town, showcasing outstanding talent in local fashion, music and dance. Guests were treated to a passionate display of creative and performing arts, and VIPs and sponsors networked while dining on a delectable custom menu prepared with love by the Slug & Lettuce at The River Club.
The event kicked off with a rendition of the South African National Anthem, led by Eersterivier’s Sibongiseni Wani, and an address from the CAFB’s Founding Director, Miss Prenessa Nalliah. During the opening remarks for the event, Nalliah boldly shared: “We are the world’s Rainbow Nation. At CAFB, we believe that it’s about time we stopped hiding our identity as a fabric, woven from threads of every race, religion, nationality, language, gender, sexual orientation, size, shape or physical and mental impairment.” Nalliah went on to request that guests dig deep into their hearts to help the young cast and crew obtain more bookings to secure their futures, save for school and tertiary education fees and improve their quality of life.
Many of the Designers, Models and Performers hail from informal settlements and townships where crime, violence and substance abuse is a daily fear. By receiving the opportunity to train in, explore and practice various creative art forms, the CAFB’s cast and crew are lauded with praise for choosing constructive ways to live life, instead of giving in to all the negative pressures surrounding them. The brand aims to teach young people how to live by integrity, discipline and respect in all that they do.
Kicking off the evening, was a fusion of South African and Middle Eastern tradition, balancing modest and contemporary fashion together in one stunning collection. Lorraine Chinamora, Psalmody Murahwa and the rest of the team at Melos Botik highlighted the beauty of modest fashion as part of the Rainbow Nation look.
The second designer for the afternoon was Lebohang Justice Maneli, showcasing two collections from his label, 'LJM Designs'. Lebohang brought his bold flavour to formal wear and breaks the stereotype of menswear vs ladieswear with a unisex beachwear range. His vision fits in perfectly with CAFB values - anyone, anywhere, any gender, sexual orientation, nationality, size, shape, language - LJM Designs is here to support you looking exactly the way YOU want to.
Afro Ripablik by Khanyisa Mngqibisa took over the runway next, with her signature African traditional prints. Blending contemporary modern day style with traditional fabric allows customers to celebrate all aspects of their identities. What better way to highlight the melting pot of cultures that is our Rainbow Nation?
Baron Design House stepped into the penultimate fashion segment for the afternoon, showing off proudly South African jewellery and accessories. Mother and daughter team, Rene and Anusca, have put an overwhelming amount of love and care into creating their stunning collection of bowties, earrings and chain pendants. So, if you love to carry a piece of home with you wherever you travel, these accessories are the way to go. Made from 100% locally produced African ShweShwe fabric, Baron Design House helps create employment opportunities right here at home, with every sale.
Moonfyre Designs rounded off the fashion segments at CAFB 2019, by taking things up a notch since their headlining show at CAFB 2018. Three signature collections, covering formal wear, beachwear and a flexi-casual look (dress up or dress down) took our breath away! Designer, Doug Carlson, has been inspired by a decade of experience in fashion photography and introduced his high-profile models from his Mira 9 Runway training programme.
Guest Judge & Speaker, Mrs Feerouza Kruger, took pride in congratulating the award-winners of the evening. Nathan Heinrich scooped up the title of Best Male Model Trainee, with Indwe Vidia taking Best Female Model Trainee for 2019 alongside him. Best Designer, Khanyisa Mngqibisa, amazed everyone with her Company Director: P Nalliah (BACC, IIE) blend of local fabrics and contemporary styles, and Andile Hlekiso was awarded the prestigious title of Angel of the Year 2019, for consistently living out the brand’s ethos.
Other labels praised for their originality on the runway included Melos Botik, represented by Designer, Psalmody Murahwa, LJM Designs by Lebohang Justice Maneli, Baron Design House, behind which are the fabulous mum and daughter team, Rene and Anusca Baron, and finally Moonfyre Designs, featuring models trained in the techniques of the Mira 9 Runway Programme. Loyiso Turwana of Langa, new to the Angel family this year, wowed the crowd with his charismatic performance of his original debut single, “My Star” among other popular hits from his upcoming album.
All in all, the event was a resounding success, with sponsors chipping in from around the world, including the United Kingdom, to help make it possible for these young stars to shine at their brightest. If interested in supporting local talent by booking any of the acts, or ordering local fashion for your special occasions, you can contact the CAFB directly on 021 830 5269 or find them online via www.creativeangelsinfo.com. Event photography is by Anel Nolte.