Previously HYPE introduced & interviewed the Soweto-based creative collective of individuals who are better known as Styla Gang. Consistently witnessing their penetrative efforts from start-up creatives to a full blown respected brand within the streets of SA, it’s only natural to keep up with the progress of the young designers and this time the S.G.O.D.S have come up with their first official collection offering, the limited Capsule collection, which showcased at the DNA showcase in Rosebank. HYPE caught up with Styla Gang to chat about their new collection.
What was the inspiration behind this Limited Capsule collection?
The inspiration behind the Capsule Collection was retro-reflectivity which is a technology that has contributed significantly to improving the visibility of pavement marking and road signs. We have also seen the technology used on safety clothing, but our approach was to create fashionable essential clothing products which will increase visibility of those pedestrians who are active during early morning & late night hours through activities, taking into consideration the season approached, which is Spring. Most people are active at night through social activities like (attending events, skating, cycling); the product was made to increase visibility and help contribute to road safety globally. Not only does this appeal to the Southern hemisphere but also to the rest of the hemispheres which face inclement weather conditions.
What’s so special & different about this new collection when compared to your previous collections?
What’s so special is that, the brand has improved its product quality as compared to the previous product offerings and has made other major developments within. What’s different is the concept. It indicates our knowledge and need to contribute to our communities through fashion. This is our first official ‘collection offering’ so the major difference as compared to our previous products is quality and design.
Your brand is all about introducing innovative fashion clothing within the street fashion industry. Do you think street fashion brands in SA imitate what international brands make? Or are we really doing our own thing/building our identity?
There are a few South African brands that have an identity and are all about doing their own thing. Other South African brands are what we call ‘trend brands’, who imitate what international brands are doing, they take that route to consistently stay on the market. It is important for all brands to have their own identity; this creates room for collaborations and growth.
What would you say are the current spring/summer fashion trends for the rest of 2014?
It’s really hard to predict or tell what’s in trend due to everyone having a different take to their realities through fashion but what seems to be coming up hard globally are ‘Net Shirts’, we will see a lot of products being made from net designed fabrics this Spring/summer 2014 from a lot of brands globally.
What has been your favourite part of working on the capsule collection?
Bringing the collection to life. We have a lot of designs made up, of products we want to introduce in to the market, but having to decide on which one to pull out first, was a bit of a challenge. Taking into consideration this is our first collection offering. Making it possible was the most important part, as we learned a lot about the production side of fashion and design, making the experience beneficial to us as young designers. So that tops the spot on our favourite part of working on the collection.
What’s the ‘must-have’ piece from this new collection?
It honestly depends on the individual buying the products, but we would say all the products are a must have. Taking into consideration, there’s only a limited unit of products being produced from each product style.
How can one get their hands on the new Styla Gang threads?
We currently have 2 physical stores distributing our products, @DIPSTRET here in Johannesburg, @boastonsociety in Cape Town. The collection will be made available second week of October at the two stores. We also have product available through us via mail order: firstname.lastname@example.org. Free delivery if products are purchased directly from us.
One word that best describes the capsule collection?