Sun Goddess to shine at festival

SUNSHINE DUO: Designers Thando and Vanya Mangaliso make up Sun Goddess Picture: SIMON DEINER RAMP
SUNSHINE DUO: Designers Thando
and Vanya Mangaliso make up Sun
Goddess Picture: SIMON DEINER RAMP

THIS weekend’s isi-Xhosa Music Festival will have an extra stylish twist as national design house Sun Goddess presents its latest SA Fashion Week collection as part of the concert. Sun Goddess founders and designers Thando and Vanya Mangaliso – who have retail stores in Durban and Johannesburg, where they are based – will be here to present their range on Saturday afternoon.

They describe their label, founded 15 years ago as “the quintessentially South African luxury fashion and lifestyle brand”, harvesting stories and images of South African traditions with the aim of preserving preserve luxury ethnic craft.

“Of course I’m Xhosa, and my wife is too!” Thando said last week, adding that although his family moved to Cape Town when he was still a child, he was born in Port Elizabeth.

““We haven’t been home for a while, but it is time! Because we are steeped in our culture, the isiXhosa Music Festival makes sense to us.

“Heritage and history are key components of our brand and even though we have moved away from the Eastern Cape and now live in Johannesburg, we must not dilute our authentic self.”

Concert-goers can expect to see more than a dozen garments, mostly from the collections shown at SA Fashion Week in April and October, but Thando promises more: “Because my wife is very creative and we have to show something new!”

“Because our brand is ‘local traditions, global style’ a lot of our things will be based on traditional Xhosa themes,” he said. “We’ll be using a lot of black and white, creams and brown, and a lot of animal print and it’s a flight of fancy, very global.”

The Mangalisos started out selling skirts out of the boot of their car. Their garments were so popular, that their brand quickly evolved, along with a drive to create garments with a strong South African identity. Sun Goddess is a regular on the SAFW ramp since 2002.The fashion show will be on the bill in the early evening, he said, suggesting that fashion fans should try to be at the concert between 5 and 7pm.

The Umhlobo Wenene FM and The City of Champions Isi-Xhosa Music Festival is on Saturday at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium at noon. Tickets are R140 to R550 at Computicket. Inquiries: (041) 450-9000.

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