Chepa is Pretoria township slang for stylish or well-dressed. The founders of the streetwear company by the same name, Dumisani and Candice Mahlangu, believe in supporting local businesses and promoting creative synergies with brands and artists that result in mutually beneficial relationships. They both have an intense love for African print and feel that there is a gap in the market for streetwear that shows appreciation for African culture and is definitive of our African roots.
Africans have a long history with fabrics that are symbolic of our cultures. The kente cloth is Ghana’s national fabric, raffia is used by the Kuba people of the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Kanembu clothing tradition dates as far back as the 800s. As Ndebele people themselves, Chepa's founders can attest to the beauty of the colourful, handmade quilts and blankets of their land. They are fiercely proud of the fabrics used for their distinctive bomber jackets which are carefully selected with the intention of bringing a sense of belonging and experience of Africa to streetwear. The names of their jackets all come from either a famous African street, political stalwart or a relevant cultural reference.
Streetwear is defined as a style of casual clothing worn by urban youth subcultures. Chepa Streetwear, a new South African ecommerce business, has taken traditional African print and added it to its funky designs for a postmodern, afrocentric culture.
Picture credits: Blunt Moya and Neo Sefatsa