South African designers who made a noise at international fashion shows in 2023

Inga Gubeka of Inga Africa. Picture: Instagram

Inga Gubeka of Inga Africa. Picture: Instagram

Published Dec 14, 2023


This year has been blissful for South Africa where sports and creativity are concerned.

The Springboks won the Rugby World Cup, shining the South African flag brightly in Europe.

We also have South African designers who made giant strides and represented Mzansi well in Europe.

Floyd Avenue Apparel

Originating from Soweto, Floyd Manotoana made his fashion debut as the SA Fashion Week Scouting Menswear competition winner in 2016.

From there, he spread his wings even further, showcasing at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Berlin, Germany.

This year, he took his funk to Milan for the Milan Fashion Week and showcased under the White Show Milan.

Inga Africa

Founded by Inga Gubeka, Inga Africa is a South African luxury leather goods brand. Gubeka’s brand was formerly known as Inga Atelier and, in rebranding, he relaunched the brand at Milan Fashion Week, Italy, where he showcased his Emazweni collection.

Inga Africa handbag. Picture: Instagram.


Also from Soweto is Zamaswazi Nkosi, founder of Zamaswazi, an African luxury fashion brand. In November, Nkosi showcased at Africa Fashion Week London.

The designer, who has showcased at multiple fashion shows, including South Africa Fashion Week and Durban Fashion Fair, was excited to take his creations to London.

On what inspires his work, Nkosi said: “Zamaswazi is passionate and fascinated by the creativeness and ever-evolving trends of this industry from the art of handwork and technology. We are inspired by everything that surrounds us in our everyday lives.

“The label is for any individual who is proud of who they are and where they come from and confident of where they are going and what they want to become.”

“We are not only proudly South Africans but proud Africans. We proudly embrace local fabrics and material and still strive at manufacturing quality garments. As we tailor, we create an essence of bespoke and couture with a flair of African heritage.

“Our vision and objective is to make clothes that boost self-esteem and confidence, and by so doing, we stress the importance of fit and comfort.

“Our collections are inspired by the ever-changing seasons and fast-paced lifestyles of people and everything else moving or standing in the middle of our busy lives.”

Zamaswazi designs at Africa Fashion Week London.

Decorum Stylists

Founded by power couple Mphahlela and Rethabile Mokgatle, Decorum Stylists is a South African brand that caters equally to men and women, offering made-to-measure suits and apparel of exceptional quality.

The pair started off as stylists and became known when they attended the Pitti Uomo Menswear Trade Fair in Italy in 2017.

Seven years later, they made their Paris Fashion Week debut as fashion designers, showcasing their inaugural collection, titled Afrika Borwa ya Rona.

“Decorum Stylists is more than just a brand; it is a statement of refined elegance. We believe that everyone deserves to experience the luxury and confidence that comes with tailored apparel, regardless of gender.

“Our goal is to provide a bespoke experience for our clients, where their individuality is celebrated and their unique style is given the utmost attention,” said Mphahlela.

Decorum Stylists designs. Picture: Pretty Simple Images.

In 2024, we’re anticipating more emerging designers to participate in international fashion shows.