A panel of international fashion specialists have announced the successful candidate in the second SAFW Cape Wools & Mohair SA Designer Challenge. Designers were nominated by industry leaders in South Africa and invited to anonymously submit their storyboards to a panel of international judges.
The South African designers who have been awarded the Cape Wools & Mohair SA Designer Challenge prize are Nicola Luther of LUNAR for ladieswear and Coenraad De Mol of De Mil for menswear.
Lunar is a South African eco-fashion and lifestyle brand that has firmly established itself as one of the countryâ€™s top design labels over the past two decades. Drawing inspiration from nature and the African landscape, Lunar crafts clothing to be as natural as possible, both in fabrication and in design.
Understated and sophisticated styles are meticulously created using only the finest quality natural fibres â€“ fabrics from the earth, with little human interference. While the aesthetic and ethos of Lunar will always endure, we are thrilled to announce a new chapter in this loved and well-respected brandâ€™s life.
New owner and creative director, Nicola Luther, has been part of the Lunar team since 2012. She has teamed up with Sonja Stanislaus-Kaw Di-Aping, part of the original ground-breaking and multi-award-winning Stoned Cherrie design team, who joins Nicola after spending the past 9 years in New York and Nairobi. Together they are poised to lead the brand, we all know and love, into the future.
De Mil was established by Coenraad De Mol in 1997 and moved into male-inspired gender-neutral clothing in 2007. Although a master patternmaker and a true constructionist, De Mil takes a new-world approach to clothing. Coenraad doesnâ€™t regard gender neutrality as just a theme. â€śItâ€™s what I do,â€ť he says.
He caters to those who donâ€™t have a place as well as those who choose not to be boxed-in by societal norms or conventions. De Mil is also the 2017 winner of the SAFW Scouting Menswear in Association with GQ Magazine. He was also nominated as a “Black Sheep” on NOT JUST A LABEL in 2019.
Black Sheep is a selection of designers from the NOT JUST A LABEL community that the scouting team have identified as being especially innovative, pioneering and striking in their work.
The designer will showcase their collections for two seasons at SA Fashion Week, presenting a Winter and Summer collection respectively, free of charge. They will also get the opportunity to attend the â€śMaking It In Textilesâ€ť Conference in Bradford in the UK, during October, with flights and accommodation fully paid for.
â€śThis competition is going from strength to strength and SA Fashion Week is the perfect partner to support South African design talent through wool.â€ť â€“ Louis de Beer, General Manager at Cape Wools SA