Xibelani skirt by Rich Mnisi. Picture:richmnisi.com.
Xibelani skirt by Rich Mnisi. Picture:richmnisi.com.

Rich Mnisi’s R60K xibelani skirt sells out: Here’s why his designs are so expensive

By Thobile Mazibuko Time of article published Feb 11, 2021

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When it comes to putting a price on his designs, Rich Mnisi doesn’t flinch.

Like his his first name, Mnisi’s garments are costly.

The multi-award-winning designer recently unveiled a new collection titled “Hiya Kaya 21,” which is a celebration of the Tsonga culture.

Part of the range is colliding cities bomber jackets, night hoodies and forecast track pants, wave blouses and the most talked-about item, the xibelani skirt.

South Africans were shocked when they saw that the Rich Mnisi xibelani costs R59,999, and as predicted, it quickly sold out.

Some may think it’s insane for a skirt to cost that much, but the thing is, it’s not just an ordinary xibelani.

The Rich Mnisi xibelani skirt is crafted from 5 meters of 100% merino wool, knotted on to nickel-plated D-rings and is attached to a leather waist belt made of 100% genuine calf Nappa.

The Rich Mnisi Xibelani. Picture:richmnisi.com.

Merino wool is a unique type of floccus made from one of the most historically relevant and economically influential breeds of sheep found in Spain. It is usually used by other affluent brands such as Michael Kors, while genuine calf Nappa is soft leather, used by Versace, Prada, and other luxury brands.

Among other Mnisi's lavish items is the Swarovski Crystals Cherry Leopard mask, released in June last year.

Rich Mnisi's R2k Swarovski Crystals Cherry Leopard mask. Picture: richmnisi.com

Priced at R2000, it was the most expensive mask in South Africa because of the crystals, and the fact that it was a limited edition. And yes, just like the xibelani, it got sold out quickly after its release.

In his Azanai collection released in 2020, Mnisi featured a range of bags at jaws dropping prices.

The most expensive item on that collection was the half-moon flat leather sling bag, a small purse inspired by a Bodi Gabonese traditional mask from the Mitsogo people.

Then going for R31,999, it has now been reduced to R23,999, the bag is made of 100% genuine calf Nappa leather, finished with 100% ostrich fringe feathers.

The Rich Mnisi half-moon flat leather sling bag. Picture:richmnisi.com.

And finally, Mnisi has dressed Beyoncé, one of the most loved global icons. So when Bonang Matheba said Rich Mnisi’s garments cost “R2 million each,” she was not too far off.

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