Tag Archives: South Africa

Fresh Nation Feature: Azola Mona

It’s incredible to witness what a formidable movement urban culture has become in South Africa. One of the most impressive facets has been the immense growth of street wear brands. From a once virtually non-existent street wear culture to a now fully fledged scene, burgeoning with emerging brands, fashionista’s and hype beasts alike.

One of the leaders of the culture is none another than SA dime piece Azola Mona. Young, fresh and perpetually dripping in swag, Azola has a puristic appreciation for street wear and reps the culture harder than most. In this edition of Fresh Nation, Azola speaks to us about her love for the urban scene, her views on emerging street wear brands in South Africa as well as being the 1st lady of leading urban wear brand Head Honcho.


Q: Who is Azola Mona?

A: I’m a 23 year-old brand building and management student at Vega in Cape Town. I’m a proudly Xhosa woman-born in Port Elizabeth but have lived practically all over SA. (Although in my heart I believe I was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. LOL).  In a nutshell I would describe myself as shy yet sociable, fun loving, caring, ambitious and slightly eclectic. I am also 1000000% the ultimate Beyoncé Stan.


Q: How would you describe your style?

A: I wouldn’t say I have a specific style; I dress in what feels comfortable and looks good for my body type and me. I like trying new trends but I believe and understand that not everything out there is for everyone. So I stay in my style/fashion lane.


Q: Where do you get your style inspiration?

A: My friends, my sister, Blogs, Hot new and old trends and Rihanna.

Q: What are your favourite fashion trends at the moment?

A: Chunky accessories, bold colours, high waisted pants/shorts/skirts, patterns, strappy heels and sneakers, sneakers, sneakers!!


Q: Who do you consider as your style icons and why?

A: Definitely Rihanna- she just does it for me. Love the fact that she’s open to trying new things. Some are misses but mostly she hits the nail right on the head for me- regardless of if she’s dressed up or down.


Q: What do you think of where the SA street style scene is at right now?

A: I love where the SA street style is at the moment. It’s definitely growing and being celebrated by normal people and not just bloggers. People are outchea doing the most and looking good while doing it. I enjoy the fact that people aren’t afraid to show their personalities through their outfits. Some of it is redundant and trend specific but it’s done well.


Q: Do you think there is a difference in terms of the street wear scene in Cape Town and in Johannesburg?

A: Yes, I’d say the CT street wear scene is more quirky and European fashion inspired. While JHB on the other hand is focused on being trendy. Cape Town for me is the more stylish city.


Q: The SA hip-hop scene has also flourished immensely over the past few years, who are you favourite artists and why?

A: OkMalumKoolKat & Ricky Rick – because they are just pushing their own vibe and not subscribing to the norm. Love their music and BoyznBucks movement. Other than that, I also really enjoy Khuli Chana, Ifani & AKA.


Q: Speaking of favourite artists, you must be the biggest Beyoncé Stan I’ve ever come across, can you please tell us a bit more about your love Bey.

A: I have loved Beyoncé since I was born. I’ve followed her journey since her Destiny’s Child Days, my family and friends actually think Beyoncé ung’loyile. I just feel that she is the greatest of all time. She is a great role model and an inspiration. She has worked for all that she has career wise- and to top it off is now also a wife and mother. Beyoncé can do no wrong. And when I grow up I want to be Blue-Ivy.


Q: There have been many urban clothing brands that have been established recently, do think there is enough support for emerging local brands?

A: YES! I don’t think there is optimal support but it definitely is there. Not only is the consumerism and support growing but so is the quality of the local urban wear brands. The past year or so has seen many emerging brands; I love that, because more quality competition is needed to push the market to new heights.


Q: What are you favourite urban/street style brands, both locally and internationally?

A: Locally it would be Head Honcho. Internationally, it would be a tie between OBEY & SUPREME.


Q: Sneakers have become such an integral part of urban culture, which kicks do you think are the dopest out at the moment?

A: I believe in Nike- anything their offering is a people pleaser. Especially with them re-launching a lot of their retro Jordan designs, Air Max’s and Roshe Runs are also great at the moment. Also Converse All- Stars never disappoint.


Q: On the subject of kicks, we’ve heard you have a pretty dope collection, can you please tell us more about that.

A: I love shoes in general, but a fresh pair of crisp sneakers makes the world go ‘round. My repertoire is definitely still growing- my favorite pair is my Jordan Son Of Mars Varsity Red/Black/Cement.


Q: What do you love most about urban culture?

A: I love the fact that it’s easy going. You get to play around with it- mixing and matching it with other fashion trends/cultures. Dressing it down or up, it just works. I also dig the fact that it has moved away from being solely associated with hip hop and encompasses a better understanding of fashion, creativity and fit.


Q: You are a brand ambassador for Head Honcho, the biggest street wear brand in the country, how did that come about and how has the experience been so far?

A: I met Nick and Mzo in early 2009 through some mutual friends. Head Honcho had only been around for a year back then, and was mostly geared at male consumers. I liked the fact that they were branching out and doing female stuff and kept jokingly calling myself the 1st Lady of Honcho. It kind of stuck cause when the female ranges started coming up, they’d call me for some in put and my opinion on the clothes. Being a named ambassador sort of came up organically through that in 2012.


Q: You’ve traveled to New York often, how has that impacted on your own personal style and how would you compare SA’s street wear scene to that of the States?

A: New York fashion is eons ahead of us!! Almost everyone you see walking or working in Times Square, Downtown Manhattan & Brooklyn just look like they’ve stepped off your favourite Tumblr fashion blogs. It’s a melting pot of different fashion styles, it’s so great. They have a lot of stores with amazing clothes- and not just the department stores that we are sort of restricted to in SA- that definitely gives them the fashion advantage in comparison to us.




You can follow Azola on Twitter and Instagram 🙂
Twitter – @Ms_Azee
Instagram – abrooklynwinter 🙂



Fresh Nation Feature: Tshepi Vundla

In the latest installment of Fresh Nation we have a look at one of Johannesburg’s emerging fashionista’s, 23 year old Tshepi Vundla. Young, beautiful, vibrant and incredibly stylish, the Alushi model and aspiring stylist’s fashion prowess is formidable. Eternally trés chic, Tshepi is not afraid to experiment with different trends, always keeping her style fresh and dynamic. Her ability to switch between urban street style and high fashion with impeccable ease is what unequivocally sets her apart from the rest of the fashion pack. Having shot editorials for renowned publications such as True Love Magazine and styled music videos such as No Sleep and Good Times Back, Tshepi is well on her way to making a notable impact on SA’s fashion scene.


Q: Who is Tshepi Vundla?

A: Tshepi Vundla is 23 year old lady who was born & raised in Johannesburg. She’s very sentimental, loving, caring, over protective, sometimes a little too sensitive & can be shy. Tshepi loves to have a good time with the people she loves & appreciates, she also enjoys art, fashion, being surrounded by smart & creative people.


Q: How would you describe your style?

A: There is no way to describe my style, I dress according to my mood & occasion. I enjoy trying out different looks & sticking with what I enjoy & feel comfortable in.


Q: Where do you get your style inspiration from?

A: I get my style inspiration from my mother, friends, celebrities, blogs, fashion magazines, movies, decor & everyday life.


Q: What are your favourite fashion trends at the moment?

A: My favourite fashion trends right now include high waisted tube skirts & crop tops, Kim Kardashian is pulling it off so well lately. Monochrome is something I enjoy, it’s so classy & so easy to work with & is perfect with red lips. Chunky statement neckless without over powering an outfit.


Q: Who do you consider as your style icons and why?

A: My style icons include Victoria Beckham because she so classy & always looks so good regardless of her hectic schedule, her being a mother & wife. I also enjoy Blake Lively, she’s always so chic. Zendaya is quickly also becoming a favourite of mine.


Q: What do you think of where the SA street style scene is at right now?

A: I like to believe street style in South Africa is growing slowly but people are expressing themselves & are experimenting with different trends. It would be cool if “normal” people were given credit for their looks, too many bloggers are focused on the same people. 


Q: There has been many urban clothing brands that have been established recently, do think there is enough support for emerging local brands?

A: I don’t think there is enough support for emerging local brands because I feel like they stick to one thing, often what they know instead of branching into different avenues & these people are so caught up in unnecessary beef that it’s not even about being creative anymore.


Q: What are you favourite urban/street style brands, both locally and internationally?

A: My favourite local urban/street style is definitely Head Honcho & International would be Supreme.


Q: Sneakers have become such an integral part of urban culture, which kicks do you think are the dopest out at the moment?

A: My favourite kicks at the moment are the Air Max, a few Jordans – loving the Oreo pair & of course Converse All Star.


Q: What do you love most about urban fashion / culture?

A: I love the fact that it’s easy to play around with urban fashion/culture, mix & match here & there & it can work for everyone.


 Q: You are signed with Alushi Model Management, how has your experience in the model industry been and how does being a model tie in with your love for fashion?

A: Indeed, I’m signed with Alushi Model Management. My experience in the model industry been fun but so tough & tiring. Fashion has always come first to me, modeling just followed & I don’t link the two because as a model, you don’t pick the outfits you wear, It’s all on the client but being surrounded by clothing is always a treat & you learn what looks good on you, the items you’ve been scared to try out on your own.


Q: Who are you favourite models locally and interntionally?

A: My favourite local model is Lerato Moloi, she is beautiful. I look up to her & she’s helped & shared so much with me about this industry & she’s so genuine. She’s lots of fun too & has a funny bone in her. My favourite international model is Joan Smalls, she is so beautiful. I also love Kate Moss too, she blew up regardless of her height, she came back up after her drug bust & she’s just bad ass & I’m obsessed with her usual look.  


Q: You’ve styled the ‘No Sleep’ and ‘Good Times Back’ music videos, how was that experience? What do you think of the standard of styling in SA compared to our international counterparts and is styling something you aspire to do professionally?

A: I did indeed style the ‘No Sleep’ & ‘Good Times Back’ music videos, the experience was fun but little tough as it was my first time styling & I didn’t wanna let Tibz down. I think SA artists should focus on the styling in their music videos as much as their music because they should be selling their viewers a dream of wanting a specific lifestyle. International artist always get this right, as you now see men wearing the shirt dresses that ASAP Rocky been wearing. Styling is something I aspire to do professionally & I’m looking forward to kicking ass.


Q: Any final words for our readers?

A: Have fun with fashion, express yourself but always feel comfortable. Love Love 🙂

You can follow Tshepi on Twitter and on Instagram, her handle is @TshepiVundla 🙂

Khanyi Dhlomo: Luminance Private Label


In one of the bravest and most exciting fashion moves to be witnessed in recent years, media mogul Khanyi Dhlomo has launched Luminance Private Label – an exclusive high fashion boutique in Hyde Park, Johannesburg. Described as ‘a high-end fashion and lifestyle concept store which is a one-stop shop for consumers who covet world-class quality and beauty’.

The store is owned by Ndalo Luxury Ventures, a fashion and lifestyle retail company founded by Khanyi. The brand name is taken from her own name meaning ‘light’ and is aimed at inspiring it’s customers to ‘live life beautifully’ according to it’s website.

High end South African consumers will now have direct access to coveted international brands such as Alexander McQueen, Armani Prive, Balenciaga, Giambattista Valli, Givenchy, Giuseppe Zanotti, Jil Sander, Mulberry, Oscar De La Renta, The Row, Tory Burch, just to name a few. This marks a new era in South African fashion and solidifies the notion that we are becoming recognised as a growing market for luxury goods.

The store is set to open the 10th of July, with an e-commerce site which will go live in November. There are currently trunk shows being held around the country offering consumers a sneak preview in anticipation of the store’s official opening. (Dates can be found on http://luminanceonline.com ).


*Pictures from google and loveaffaircapetown.com



The Rogue

Caron Williams

I have always held the belief that fashion is the most formidable movement of our time, and one of the most formidable movements in all of history. It is an expression of who we are, and a reflection of the subtle elements which define us. Fashion transcends mere clothes and brands, it has become so deeply entrenched as a part of who we are, it now plays a significant role in how we define ourselves and how we’re identified in society and the world.

I have always been immensely passionate about not only fashion, but style, culture and movements and how they all contribute to who we are as a people. I remain fascinated by how fashion influences us , and in turn how we influence fashion and its symbiotic relationship with cultural movements, art, literature, photography architecture, etc.

With this blog, I hope to educate, to move, to inspire and to share my love and passion.

Peace & Love.

Caron Williams