#AfricaYourTimeIsNow: SA designer's cool slogan tees a big hit in the States

28 July 2019 - 00:00 By Emmanuel Tjiya
Fashion designer Papama Mtwisha. File photo.
Fashion designer Papama Mtwisha. File photo.
Image: Gallo Images/The Times/Mariska van den Brink

Designer Papama Mtwisha's huge international distribution deal with Boomingdale's, a major US luxury department store chain, is more proof that it's Africa's time to shine.

The Port Elizabeth-born designer's signature unisex T-shirt and sweatshirt, both emblazed with the slogan "Africa Your Time Is Now", are now being stocked at The Carousel @ Boomingdale's Style Kingdom pop-up stores in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

They're also available for purchase on Boomingdale's online store, which distributes worldwide.

One of The Carousel @ Bloomingdale's Style Kingdom pop-up stores. Note Mtwisha's 'Africa Your Time is Now' sweatshirts on the shelves and table.
One of The Carousel @ Bloomingdale's Style Kingdom pop-up stores. Note Mtwisha's 'Africa Your Time is Now' sweatshirts on the shelves and table.
Image: Bloomingdale's

"In keeping with what the message is about, it is Africa's time and the world has recognised that. They can't ignore us anymore," said Mtwisha, whose is also founder of the children's clothing brand, Butter Pudding.

"We are equal players in various industries and we are a force to be reckoned with. No one is doing anyone favours here; we are going in as equal players."

'Africa Your Time is Now' Tee.
'Africa Your Time is Now' Tee.
Image: Bloomingdale's

The 38-year-old launched the #AfricaYourTimeIsNow movement two years ago.

She said it was through having pop-up stores in Belgium and France, combined with a strong social media presence, that the movement gained traction.

The Bloomingdale's deal came about after her Parisian associate made a recommendation to the American department store chain.

"It's a fantastic distribution opportunity, because when we started the movement the aim was to have as many people exposed to the truth and this message," she said.

We have a big clientele in the US, and have been shipping our garments from SA; this deal just makes it easier for them to access our clothes, she added.

• The Style Kingdom pop-up stores are open in the US until September 2. 

This article is adapted from one originally published on the SowetanLIVE website. Read the original story here.


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