This past weekend, the House of Rubicon brought to life an authentic celebration of heritage by showcasing its latest collection at South Africa Fashion Week.
Commemorating twenty-one years as a style and culture institution in South Africa’s fashion landscape, Rubicon’s Spring/Summer 2023 collection marries Eastern and Western influences with African elegance while paying homage to the reimagined Myth of Origin story about the lost kingdom of Mapungubwe.
Inspiration for the Collection
Founder and Creative Director, Hangwani Nengovhela, draws inspiration from the landscapes and artefacts recovered at the world heritage site. The kingdom’s origins passed through oral history tell a tale of three brothers journeying through the region. One brother was inspired to stop and sleep over while the other two travelled on. He awoke the following day to the breathtaking sight of Mapungubwe’s landscape with its beautiful salt pans. This brother went on to establish the kingdom that would later be known as both an economic and cultural trading hub inviting travellers from throughout the continent as well as overseas, including Europe and Asia, to make the journey to trade in gold, pottery, beading, and other items that were highly coveted in the great iron age.
Rubicon’s Spring/Summer 2023 Collection – A Story Reimagined
Rubicon’s Spring/Summer 2023 collection tells a tale of history reimagined. Nengovhela envisions that perhaps the founder of the great kingdom was introduced to a beautiful Asian woman, the daughter of an important trade partner, who would later become his wife.
Each piece in this season’s collection intricately depicts how Nengovhela envisions the young bride would have curated her wardrobe. The aesthetic is romantic and flowing with structured edges. The juxtaposition between the garment’s fabric selections and colour choices is an interpretation of how the young bride would have married the cultural influences from her home with the African elements of her new groom’s heritage.
“With this endearing romantic collection, we designed each of the garments to make the wearer feel emboldened, chic, and in touch with the essence of who she truly is. This is a return to her femininity,” affirmed Hangwani Nengovhela.
Guests in Attendance
Guests in attendance at the showcase included fellow designers David Tlale and Craig Jacobs, news anchor Abigail Visagie, media personalities Kim Jayde and DJ Sabby, reality TV stars Rosette Ncwana and Yaya Mavundla, artist Kyle Deutsch and actress Nobuhle Mahlasela. Fashion industry players Felipe Mazibuko and Yasmin Furie also dazzled in the front row.