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Meet Sabelo Shabalala, The Nuwave Streetwear Savant of SA
Published 3 months ago by

When high-end fashion meets streetwear, the product is powerful and timeless design. Richmanskyf is a local blend that speaks to a uniquely South African experience in the fashion industry created by Sabelo Shabalala, one of the four apprentices under Zaid Osman for Chivas Venture’s A-Grade capsule collection. The brand is inspired by the city of its origin, Durban, and its people, amplifying its identity while pioneering a new, modern aesthetic that walks the thin line between runway chic and luxury streetwear.

 

Sabelo’s love for streetwear first hit in high school, with exposure to South African streetwear brands like Baps, Galxboy and Sol-Sol that were gaining popularity at the time. He realised early that streetwear is a more than just fashion; it is a culture and a movement and that this was something he wanted nothing more than to be part of. He recognised the success of the fashion icons like Pharrell Williams, Heron Preston, Jerry Lorenzo, Virgil Abloh and this fuelled his drive to achieve a similar impact amongst his peers and so, Richmanskyf was born while Sabelo and his partner Sithelo Mlhongo honed their passion for fashion at the Durban University of Technology.

 

Sabelo’s devotion to streetwear and the culture earned him a seat at the table with 3 other apprentices for Chivas Venture’s A-Grade capsule collection. Richmanskyf is largely inspired by his rich cultural background. Born in the Eastern cape and having grown up in Kwa-Zulu Natal, Sabelo is a symbol of success as a blend, more specifically a blend of his Xhosa and Zulu cultures. Richmanskyf garments boast a lot of earth tones and nudes infused with black and white tones which are prominent in both cultures. The fabrics are sourced locally from wholesalers, staying true to the Chivas Venture objective of creating sustainable ecosystems in local communities. This is also how the brand keeps its promise of quality with every garment and is key to how the eclectic A-Grade capsule collection will be created.

 

The Chivas Venture platform from leading blended Scotch whisky, Chivas, is in collaboration with streetwear legend and Grade Africa founder, Zaid Osman. Zaid and Chivas provide up-and-coming fashion designers with the tools and support needed to produce a nine-piece capsule collection will provide local communities with employment opportunities, empowering newly appointed apprentices to join forces with Chivas and Grade Africa. To Sabelo, Chivas Venture has been a very powerful learning curve. He’s gotten a lot of insight from fellow creatives in the fashion industry, increased his knowledge of the business of fashion, been exposed to a wider view of the industry than before, and now has a greater understanding of the power of collaboration and is already applying these learnings to his brand.

 

On the capsule collection, Sabelo says we should “Expect to see a very different approach to streetwear and very interesting styles in the collection” and we know to keep our eyes firmly locked because this is definitely not one to miss!

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