WHAT /IS/ LUXURY ? RICH MNISI'S NEW R60,000 XIBELANI SKIRT SPARKS THE CONVERSATION ON LUXURY WEAR
Rich Mnisi drops a new collection called ''Hiya Kaya'' and sparks a nationwide conversation on what luxury actually means...
Luxury is defined as ''a condition,situation or product of great comfort, ease, and wealth. It is something that is expensive and not necessary, something that is not usually or always available''. So from this definition, we can deduce that luxury has to do with high price points and exclusivity. For centuries luxury has been a space that has been run and dictated by Western society. Africa in the last 20 years has fought for it's place in the luxury world and we are finally making head way.Brands like Rich Mnisi and Maxhosa are spear heading this revolution, but there seems to be some resistance and this is why we think it exists.
African people are accustomed to luxury goods being created by the the western world that they, themselves don't believe that luxury can be created in a place like Africa where all we see is poverty and despair (well that's all the media shows us). It's a form of self hate and is one of the by-products of colonialism and is something as a continent we all have to conquer.
Rich Mnisi dropped a new collection dubbed ''Hayi Kaya'' and in the collection he dropped a Xibelani skirt (a traditional dress worn by Tsonga women during their traditional xibelani dance) and he has priced this dress at R60,000, a fact that outraged black twitter. Gucci can price a denim jacket at $10'000 and no one will even question it, but if an African designer makes something inspired by African culture and heritage, people immediately try and discredit it. They can't fathom that a local South African brand can recreate something from our African heritage and turn it into luxury. They don't believe that our own culture and heritage can be categorised as ''luxury'', and that is where the problem is right there.We were all fooled into believing that African culture can never qualify as luxury, and this is something that is holding us back from competing with the global market.
We applaud brands like Rich Mnisi who are rewriting the narrative for luxury in Africa and the rest of the world. Africa's time is now and no one is going to stop it. So, decide if you want to be apart of making History or if you want to be a spectator.