In our latest Colour Issue, we’ve selected six of local fashion’s avant-garde – people whose inherent style we admire and whose trend-savvy we trust. Today we chat to designer and shop-owner Peacemaker Hliso, stylist Lulama ‘Lulu’ Sono and ELLE’s fashion editor Asanda Sizani for part two of our Sartorialists feature. Here’s what they had to say…
As the Fashion Editor at our chic sister publication, ELLE, Asanda Sizani is the epitome of the magazine’s tagline: sexy, stylish and spirited. One of the country’s leading opinionistas and stylists, this former model’s talent is for keeping the fashion-loving public in the know about everything from skirt lengths to colour trends, wedge heels vs flats and the ‘it’ handbag of the season. And then there’s her enviable personal style that is as polished as it is edgy thanks to a keen eye for throwing together vintage with high fashion, and chain store with couture. We predict very big things to come.
What inspires you? I take time to walk around, and I draw inspiration from everything around me. It can be an encounter, an image, a building, or a feeling. I am also inspired by traditional tribal costume, old movies, nature and colour.
Favourite urban spot? 95 Keerom holds a special place in my heart not only because of its original elements that have been preserved since the 1600’s, but because that was where I had my first dinner with someone special.
What do you think Cape Town’s title of World Design Capital 2014 will mean for designers in this country? Do you think it is just a title or do you think actual change will be brought about? It will definitely boost and create a platform for our designers for them to be recognised on the world stage. It’s not just a title. Our designers have the expertise, talent, ability and creativity to back it up. Hopefully, it will also banish the general misconceptions about South Africa.
Who’s in your secret address book? A lady called Zanele Daniels who sources and makes beautiful vintage dresses for me. I love a good dress!
Fashion editor, model, journalist, stylist. Where are you planning to go from here? I am very happy to have explored a little bit of everything in the fashion industry. It has led me to world’s biggest selling fashion magazine, ELLE. It’s always been a dream. I would love to travel more, learn more, and contribute more.
How do you keep a level head considering the glamorous nature of your work? The fact that I don’t know everything, and am on a constant journey of learning, keeps me grounded. I’m appreciative of every opportunity I’ve been offered and humbled to meet and work with the team that I’ve always admired.
What do you make of the intersection between fashion and furniture design? Fashion and furniture do have a close relationship. Both have always been used to attract and adorn – and of course, be functional. Many designers like Klûk CGDT use upholstery fabric in their clothing, and designers like Maison Martin Margiela incorporate the shapes of furniture pieces in their eccentric designs. At the moment I’m inspired by Laduma Ngxokolo’s knitwear as his textile and prints have applications for decorative furniture accessories.
Peacemaker Hliso is the driving force behind Goat Clothing – a fiercely hip South African brand ‘born on the fashion streets of Cape Town’ that celebrates our diverse cultural groups. His self-taught signature style is one that stitches together the ‘retro funk’ attitude he encounters on a daily basis with the inescapable beauty of Cape Town’s natural surroundings, resulting in a youthful range that moves seamlessly from roll-up-your-shorts low key to night-on-the-town tailored. Goat Clothing, 102 Longmarket street, 021 448 3487.
What do you predict Cape Town’s title as the World Design Capital 2014 will lead to? I strongly anticipate that top international brands will seek out design solutions and collaborations with local designers, who offer a particular design energy and creativity that is totally unique to Cape Town.
What’s in your secret address book? A list of undiscovered underground artists that are amazingly talented and out of work. I’ve just discovered two young guys with a brand called Stoopid that has impressed me.
Favourite destination? The Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock for the Saturday market, extraordinary culinary offerings and relaxed ambience.
What can’t you live without? My notepad and my fabulous Louis Vuitton glasses.
What’s playing in your iPod? The Best of Simply Red.
Lulama ‘Lulu’ Sono is one of Cape Town’s best kept secrets: those in the know make their way to her stall, ‘Liewe Lulu Vintage’, in Church Street (known for its antique and bric-a-brac vendors) to paw through the rails of ever-changing fashion, shoes and accessories that she has carefully curated. Fashion has always been an obsession when, as a child growing up in Gugulethu, Lulu would deconstruct and remodel the garments her mother had bought her, ‘partly to look different from the other kids, and also because my mum couldn’t always afford to buy me what I really wanted’. Nowadays her unique style nous isn’t only confined to her open-air vintage outlet. Lulu also works as a personal stylist and image consultant, which she does from a studio in Salt River. Find Lulu at her stall in Church Street, off Long Street, every day from 10am to 5.30pm, Monday to Saturday or contact her on firstname.lastname@example.org.
What inspires you? My love of fashion, especially vintage.
Favourite urban spot? Asoka Bar on Kloof Street.
What do you love most about being a South African right now? The diversity of the different cultures, especially in Cape Town.
Most beloved possession? Shoes, shoes, shoes and more shoes. I like genuine quality, comfortable leather shoes with interesting detailing. It’s something I’ve learnt from being around and wearing vintage shoes.
Favourite South African designer? Unfortunately, none currently that touches my personal tastes or uses vintage-inspired references or fabrics in their designs.
For more, see Part 1 of our Sartorialists feature.
* Photographs Adriaan Louw Production Charl Edwards Interviews Rebecca Houston & Alece Bick Additional Text Mandy Allen