Tuesday, 26 August 2014

NGOSIKADZI Wrap Dress Goes from Day to Night

I have been having a lot of fun styling the NGOSIKADZI dresses for the blog, and I’m even more certain that print dresses will be a big trend in Harare pretty soon (I have already spotted quite a few printed frocks, and I’m soo glad the trend is finally taking flight). This post focuses on the NGOSI wrap dress which was a huge highlight for me on Sunday (24 August 2014), as I took the dress from Day to Night; with two looks that I’m going to share in this post. And I will honestly say I was truly a highlight as everyone kept complementing the dress – a lovely feminine print if I must say so myself :).

Pretty in PINK
I love the colour pink, and I’m not ashamed to say I own a few pink pieces in my closet (check out Pink Nostalgia here). So when I had the “AHA” moment of styling this dress in pink, it was a visionary ‘Modern African Princess’ (this is the theme I was going for). I paired the frock with some of my favourite pieces, keeping in mind to match with the colours on the dress:

1. Pink blazer from Truworths Zimbabwe – this is my go-to blazer that doesn’t let me down and looks good with just about anything.

2. Pink head band from Bling Bling – Lost accessory but found right in time for this look.

3. Silver Bubble choker – great solid colour that works with just about anything, and adds a quirky/edgy pizazz to any look.

4. Zara Black tote – I personally think totes are great to carry anything and for an uber stylish feel; bonus points if it’s black because black is a neutral colour that blends in with anything.

5. Black pumps – since I took this look to church, pumps where the preferred shoe choice to keep it neat and polished for the church environment.

6. MrP Sunglasses – I don’t think any outfit is complete without sunglasses, and this particular pair is a go-to favourite, #BigAndBoldSunglasses.

You can't go wrong with Black accessories.
African Themed Wedding
Later in the day I took the dress to an African themed wedding; #NaijaZimWedding – which was absolutely beautiful at the Wild Geese Lodge. Although a lot of the reception party took a modern route to dressing for the ceremony – I was glad I was one of the few who opted to go African. There’s soo much I can describe of Wild Geese Lodge but it will take two good blogposts because I wouldn’t want to leave out any detail. But I will say the lodge is a great recommendation for any wedding, conferences or party – with a 10 km radius out of Harare, if you are coming from Harare drive.

For the evening I switched from pink to black and gold, with a black peplum jacket form Jet, Gold Envelope clutch from Sapatos and black sandals from MrP. I kept the silver neckpiece and the sunglasses, whilst my hair went from sleek pushback in the morning to a low pony tail for the evening. I must say I loved the sunset over the lodge that it was a perfect scenery for a photoshoot by the stairs of one of the buildings – a hazy but golden light as the sun goes down. An “African sunset” it was.

That beautiful African sunset.

Forgive my poor home pedicure but these MrP sandals are too adorable!
Scenes From the Wedding

With that said, I hope this post has inspired you to invest in a print dress this season, because with these two looks in one day – I guarantee you there are a ton of ways to style and rock a printed frock for the summer!

With these two looks, I want know to know which one is your fave NGOSIKADZI Wrap Dress style? Sound off and share your thoughts.

Stay Gorgeous,

Tendai Sophia.

Monday, 18 August 2014

My Weekend Ensemble - Pink Nostalgia

I have been going through a lot of forgotten pieces in my closet as of late, primarily due to my annual spring cleaning fest where I push all the winter clothing at the back of the closet and push the summer ones forward – for easy accessibility. Whilst doing that I came across my good ol’ blush pink sling purse and pink denims I bought for my birthday when I turned 19! I remember it was just around the time colour blocking was picking up on the international front and Pink was an obvious choice for me. So I went for bright pink denims! I wore these beginning August on a Sunday and decided to stick to two tones – nudes and pink with a nude blouse, scotch jacket (with brown highlights) and of course the blush pink purse topped off with black boots. I’m sure a lot of nostalgia is in order on the blog this coming Summer season as I keep finding pieces that have been tucked away for ages!

I always love a bit of Nostalgia – (something old, something new and something borrowed), in my life because all these pieces have a story behind them resonating at some particular point in time. Goes to show that fashion just runs through my system.

Whilst we are at it, my good friends from Deck Magazine picked up “Is #ZimFashion late on Fashion trends”, in their fashion and style section – another good discussion article that delves into what’s happening on the #ZimFashion arena. What’s a community of fashion without a little debate right? Do sound off and share your thoughts.

All the same, find me on Instagram @tendaitoscie and let’s get snapping!

Stay Gorgeous,

Tendai Sophia.

I'm into these @womanandhome_sa Go Golden sunglasses from their August issue.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

My Weekend Ensemble – Tux + Denim

Tuxedo Blazer
Jeans from Wardrobe Mix
Flowing black blouse - Vintage
Black & Gold MRP pumps
Black MRP snood
ELLE magazine SA sunglasses
Sling bag
Stone beads
Happy Sunday Empire!

I surely hope the past week has been smooth, with the Heroes and Defence Forces long weekend and jumping right back to work! As for the blog, well I’m sure you are well aware of the on-going Ngosikadzi collaboration that’s been bringing FUN-tastic styles to rock with print dresses! All in the preparation of SUMMER!

As for my look today – it’s pretty casual and laid back, encompassing some of my favourite closet pieces and of course a NEW HAIRDO. The tuxedo jacket has had a cameo on the blog before, whilst the jeans are a go-to favourite. As of late I’ve been feeling nostalgic – pulling out tucked away pieces from the closet, and giving them a fixer upper! One of the pieces is this blush pink sling bag from December 2011, which I have been embracing as of late and these stone beads that I bought way back in high school. I have another post in the works that also includes the sling bag and a little something working around pumps! I find comfort in wearing pumps a lot of the times as I maintain my heels for events or outings – and my lifestyle revolves around public transport so heels aren’t always a go-to factor.

Other than that, I sure hope you are relaxing this weekend in preparation for another busy week ahead. Don’t forget to check out my styling venture with the Ngosikadzi dresses on the blog. The main emphasis is to create awareness on locally made and affordable #ZimFashion – and some of the styling tips I share are curated along those lines; which is Chic and Affordable! If you are an up and coming brand/designer and want exposure for your work, please do not hesitate to contact me as I’m always looking to emulate local and fresh designs on the blog.

Stay Gorgeous Empire!

Tendai Sophia.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

NGOSIKADZI tent dress rocked Casual!

The third look from the blog’s NGOSIKADZI collabo, and the second look with the Ngosi tent dress is given a casual twist. In the last post we focused on an Evening glam look with the printed frock – downplaying the accessories with red, black and gold which complemented the dress’s vibrant colours. This time I’ve given the frock a casual day look which really centres around a good day in the African sun, whilst keeping trendy and chic.

How I Styled It – The GLAM Project Way
This time around I focused on comfort and being chic in the sun, so I paired the dress with black leggings, black scarf as a head wrap, favourite oversized Mr. Price sunnies, Marie Claire tote from Bata shoes, gold bracelet from Bling Bling and silver neckpiece also from Bling Bling. Inspiration for this look pretty much drew from my constant movement with public transport using kombis and taxis to get around. I always believe comfort is key and sometimes I’m in the mood to wear a dress, feel cute but at the same time appropriate. With fashion trends being a big down factor in Harare streets – it is sometimes suresafe to tone it down but still be uber stylish - (This is just my verdict, people have different experiences and I have my own).

What I Love About the Tent dress!
In the last post I mentioned how much I adore this dress; and here are some of the reasons why:

1. It is a light frock with the loudest and boldest print - The design boosts strong accents of reds and oranges, which makes the dress super exciting and different for a fun loving personality.

2. The dress is also great for colour co-ordination (and I love to co-ordinate in quirky ways); if you wish to incorporate with red, orange, blue and yellow. But keep these colours to your accessories, so that the dress is the centre of attention.

3. The dress reminds me of a 60s era! And I’m all about Nostalgia and good ol’ classic fashion – but this dress has a modern twist which is the PRINT. Remember in the last post I spoke of the added features of the V neck slit at the back and pockets?! Yep, this dress has got that IT factor!

GLAM Project Tip: take this dress from day to night by throwing on a nude/neutral cardi and switch the sandals for a summer thong wedge! It’s that simple.

Live, Love Print Fashion

Tendai Sophia.

Black Leggings
Black scarf as head wrap
Black and Gold sandals from Mr. Price (Now MRP)
Marie Claire tote from Bata Shoes
Gold Bracelet from Bling Bling
Oversized sunnies
Silver Neckpiece also from Bling

Saturday, 9 August 2014

The GLAM Project – NGOSIKADZI Evening Look

Beyond excited to bring back this project, after a mini hiatus. I always love a good styling challenge and giving it my Signature look. With the continuation of The GLAM Project ZW and NGOSIKADZI collabo, I bring you the NGOSIKADZI tent dress which is very bold, colourful and too cute for words. Now if memory serves well, the GLAM Project ZW - NGOSIKADZI collabo covers two Kitenge print dresses. The first being the NGOSIKADZI wrap dress back in June, which I styled appropriately for an evening look, with boots and all!

The second dress is this cute but super bold tent dress that has a plunging V neck at the back and pockets in the hem sides. I styled this dress for an evening look with some added quirkiness. With such a strong print, it’s only natural that the dress has to do all the attention grabbing. I paired the frock with a black cropped jacket, black stalkings, black scarf (tied as a head wrap), red heels (to pick up the accents of red on the dress), a gold envelope clutch from Sapatos (again this helps to match with the yellow and orange accents on the dress) and a gold with black neckpiece from Bling Bling in Harare.

Now seeing that this is an evening look, it makes it perfect to stand out on a Night Out On The Town, a romcom with the girls or even a subtle date. Personally, this is my favourite dress and I can see it going pretty much anywhere this upcoming Spring/Summer – especially with the Casual pairing and warm summer nights (Coming up soon on the blog).

Now, how would your style this sassy little frock? Sound off and let me know, because there are soo many ways to style and play around with print!

Lots of Love,

Tendai Sophia

Paisley print tent dress
Black cropped jacket
Black stalkings
Black scarf as head wrap
Red heels
Gold clutch
Black and Gold neckpiece
Sunnies for an added touch 

NB: Don’t be left out of The GLAM Project ZW styling and NGOSIKADZI dresses by purchasing your very own NGOSIKADZI tent dress or Wrap dress at $25.00 on the Concrete Jungle NGOSIKADZI online store or email to make an order!

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Is #ZimFashion late on Fashion Trends?

I’M BACK! After a month long hiatus with a trip down south, myself and the blog are back; with fresh new content to indulge in. Whilst I was unexpectedly away on a trip to South Africa I had a lot of free time on my hands – observing and watching the entertainment industry in South Africa. I remember indulging in watching a lot of VUZU TV with V Entertainment and being glued to their 5th birthday celebrations in Durban July. I remember focusing soo much on what the presenters were wearing – their look, style and fashion! They were always fashion forward and stylish, with my favourite personality being Dineo Moeketsi. Every time the VUZU 5th birthday ad came on, the only thing I concentrated on was her short pink long sleeved jumpsuit with the gold belt to match - It was my fave!

Ok! Enough narrating and let’s get straight into it! The FASHION TRENDS – I started drawing a comparison between SA fashion and Zim fashion. SA fashion was somehow not any less different from American fashion – what you see in the mag is what you got in real life – fashion conscious, always on point and always on trend. There were different looks to suit different personalities and different stores to cater to different individuals which really ran down to your budget. My obvious shopping stint was Mr Price, The Hub, and Ackermans. But whilst I was doing this, I continued to observe what the trends where, what was dressed on the mannequins and what the current clothing campaign ad was. My conclusion ran down to the following items that where trending on the streets and stores in Joburg;

1. Crop top - short, cute, sexy, stylish, bold and printed! Crop tops where a big trend that dominated the shelves in MRP (Mr. Price). Not only embraced in the stores but with SA bloggers too; with looks from and Back home the crop top trend quickly came in some stores and died, having spotted a few if not a handful of stores that carried a few crop tops. Not sure if it was a lack of popularity or the trend might officially come later on, only time will tell.

Chenai Muhwati from Fabulously Pink blog wearing a crop top with a matching skirt.
Carlinn from the very popular SA blog Superficial Girls wearing a crop top and Midi skirt both from MRP.
2.Cheeky shorts – denim cheeky shorts where in an upcoming ad campaign with Jays Jays for their summer collection which was slowly starting to take flight. Back home in Zim, I’ve spotted a handful of stores with cheeky little bum shorts but none worn on the streets.

Cheeky summer shorts worn by Carlinn from Superficial Girls, accompanied by the Bowler bag.
3,Circle/Midi skirts – just before I left, MRP’s summer ad campaign had a feature on ladies circle skirts both printed and plain. When I googled it the trend seemed to be going into its second season. Here in Zim however, full length or short circle skirts are embraced by local designs such as Mucha Couture, Blaque Excellence and, as for the normal individual – I can recall myself and blogger Sharron Mungazi of Deffinatly Shaz who have taken on the trend publicly. But it’s safe to say, I’ve seen it picking up in parts of the city. I remember getting a circle skirt made late last year and my tailor of choice had a difficult time understanding why I chose a circle skirt and why I wanted a flouncy silhouette. Needless to say I had to look for a new tailor and new fabric!

A pic from Sharron Mungazi's blog - Deffinatly Shaz, wearing a deep blue Midi Skirt.
Back in June I did a second post with my print Midi skirt
Once again Chenai Muhwati also rocking the trend on her blog.
4. The Bowler bag - The bowler bag is a round little fellar that has three straps in  total; two shorter straps on each side and one long shoulder length strap. The bowler is super cute and comes in a block colour that can be accompanied with lighter or darker hues such as the one below. Once again, Sapatos had these bags in stock around June and Edgars has a colourful string of bowlers as well. Greatermans also had a few ‘Dazzle’ bowlers before it shut down, and street style wise I spotted a handful of ladies carrying bowlers.

Bowler bag
Sourced Online

5. Ankle Wedge boots
– ankle boots where the winter boot of the season, whilst the wedge cut was a popular trend. If I remember correctly MRP, Legit, Ackermans and The Hub stocked on the wedge boot with both zip ups and lace ups. Which automatically meant the young and fashionable where taking on the trend strongly! Coming back home the trend was alive with my own ankle wedge boot from Sapatos, and a few boutiques in the city stocking some. Trend wise it wasn’t known, with a lot of individuals still opting for the good ol’ knee length riding boot to keep warm.

Ankle Wedge boots both from MRP during the winter season.
Ankle Wedges from Sapatos back in June.
6. Snoods – snoods were a big trend during July. Both men and women, young and old were rocking a snood, either knitted snood or the fabric type. The usual long wrap around scarves seemed to be a thing of the past. In Harare however I have only ever spotted a snood once at Joina City’s Sapatos.

Ladies Snood in Woolworths
Men's snood wrapped around a mannequin in Truworths Men.
7. Pullover knits – pullover knits were the order of the day. Whether lightweight or chunky and bold – they were stocked up in a lot of the stores and on the individuals as well. When it comes to knits at home, it hasn’t been fully embraced yet, especially the imprinted sweatshirt or one with graphics and print. Some of the nice pullover knits can be found in Edgars or Truworths – but it is usually streamlined to one look and not a variety.
Ladies stylish pullover knits on the mannequins by studio.w in Woolworths stores.
8. Wellingtons – I’m not sure what the fascination was but wellingtons where a winter favourite. Wellingtons are rain boots that had been given an updated and somewhat fashionable look. Wellingtons where just as popular as ankle wedges than your ordinary knee length boot, with bright colours, funky designs and characters for both the young and old. I haven’t seen a Wellington in Harare, as of yet. I’m still to find out, although they aren’t really my style.
Little kiddies Wellingtons in a variety of colours - also in Woolworths.
With the trends covered above, here is the verdict:

Can we Question Moral values to Fashion?
Where are we on the trend scale? Are some of Harare’s fashionistas too late or we put soo much reliance on tradition and patriotism that soo much of our trends are muted or non-disclosed to the public? You only see shorts, short minis and crop tops at suburban events or parties where the gate is closed and no one knows what’s going on inside OR at a night club where like-minded individuals hang out and understand each other. Taking a mid-bearing crop top to the streets or cheeky bum shorts out on the town may seem sketchy and not the brightest idea as society might shun you, look down upon you and more or less label you. The scenario is even worse if your mode of transport is combis and not your own personal car! Safe to say don’t go there..

Money or Fashion fad? Is it worth it to spend?
Not all cases of fashion trends are late in Zim. Some are on time and on point, if you have extra cash to spare in some of Harare’s top boutiques. Imported labels from Europe, America and South Africa are the norm, and the price tag is too hefty for a normal wallet. In most cases you find yourself calculating ‘the opportunity cost’ when it comes to buying a designer blouse once off or use that money to buy three cute blouses in Powersales. Options are limited as the designer blouse is one of a kind whilst your cute blouse from Powersales is worn by three other different women you bump into in the CBD. Creating an individual look is a challenge which really runs down to your finances. If you are not hesitant, kumabhero is always an option to check out.

What do we say about trends? Can we embrace them?
When we talk of trends we talk of the in-thing! What’s hot, what’s happening at that moment! With the economic scrunch in Zim and the textile industry still trying to revive, a lot of individuals just want to be clothed and not look at trends because it is costly, unbeneficial and sometimes the fabric makes you question twice on your investment. Whilst a country like South Africa can invest in trends, the same cannot be said about Zimbabwe. Until we rise above our economic scrunch, trends are the least concern on any ordinary Zimbo’s mind. Putting food on the table and paying school fees is top priority!

So there you have it - What do you say about trends in Zimbabwe? I have covered numerous articles on trends and I have tried a few here and there on the blog. A lot of reliance with the trends I have covered where either tailor-made or assistance from close friends who constantly cross the border between Zim and SA. Now onto you, do you think #ZimFashion is late on global trends? What are your thoughts?

DISCLAIMER: This article is in the views of the writer. From travelling to South Africa and back home – I only observed, asked and noted down notes through my own research. I’m not affiliated with any of the brands mentioned in this post. I'm always on a quest to question Zim Fashion; by redefining it, bringing it to your attention and finding solutions through this blog.

*The #ZimFashion debate continues! Check out the first post that covered "What's In the Fashion Industry in Zimbabwe", and weigh in.*

Tendai Sophia.