CELEBRATING ten years in the fashion industry, South African label Maxhosa has showcased its upcoming ready to wear Spring 2021 collection for IMG’s New York Fashion Week (NYFW), via a virtual runway show.
Participating in NYFW for a third time, the ‘Missoni of Africa’ brand by Laduma Ngxokolo displayed a vibrant collection with the brand’s signature Xhosa-inspired patterns and beadwork on its knits for the men’s and women’s collection.
Titled “God’s work is miraculous”, Maxhosa’s latest collection has pieces which do not only cater to the vibrant cosmopolitan fashion enthusiast, but also to the sporty fashion enthusiast, which was inspired by the recent sightings of NBA players like Dwayne Wade and Carmelo Anthony sporting Maxhosa designs on their social media pages.
Noting his decade long career as a self-funded designer, Ngxokolo told fashion publication WWD that in line with the current pandemic affecting the globe, “Happiness has become a luxury…it’s difficult now to smile, and people need visuals to remind them”.
In collaboration with popular South African food brand Tastic Rice (as inspiration for accessories), the collection features sporty, street-style looks for men with oversized polo shirts with shorts, playful printed tracksuits, colourful bucket hats, socks and matching vibrant face masks. Some of the new designs were worn by some of South Africa’s biggest celebrities and influencers, including actor Warren Masemola, who was part of Disney’s ‘Black is King’ cast.
“[Tastic Rice] is a local heritage brand, the biggest in the country, that every year collaborates with a designer. This year it’s us, and we thought it would be beautiful to use their rice bags as handbags”, he further told WWD.
The women’s collection featured the signature printed knit dresses, striped polo crop tops over knit tube skirts, bralettes, silk sarong skirts, and printed two-piece sets – all embellished with beadwork and solid print piping.
Reflecting on Black Lives Matter and the growing diverse showcases at IMG’s NYFW, Ngxokolo felt that the movement has shone a light on black-owned businesses which may bring a positive season for fashion designers in this period and for the future.
“Now the time has come where media outlets are willing to access and share our content. The opportunities that will come from that are that people will get to know us and we will be of influence culturally, globally”.
The Maxhosa brand has risen with popularity over the last few years with its distinctive Xhosa-inspired prints and beadwork, and most recently was featured in Beyonce’s production of ‘Black is King’, as well as stylist Zerina Akers and Beyonce’s ‘Black Parade’ directory of black-owned businesses.