Zahara may soon rock it as the queen of Shweshwe

2013-11-24 06:00

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Eastern Cape singing sensation Zahara could soon be wearing a Shweshwe outfit if East London clothing house, Da Gama Textiles, has its way.

Da Gama has approached Zahara, whose real name is Bulelwa Mkutukana, to be an ambassador for their popular Shweshwe outfits.

Zahara’s manager at TS Records, TK Nciza, confirmed that there were talks between Zahara and Da Gama, but that nothing had been finalised.

“It’s a long, ongoing discussion which has not yet been finalised. We still need to find out what governs the relationship,” Nciza said.

The Shweshwe, a traditional outfit worn mostly by umakoti (a Xhosa bride), is a popular clothing item in the Eastern Cape among men and women. They have their own ranges of designer outfits made out of the fabric.

The East London clothing firm is looking at dressing the award-winning musician during her tour to promote her latest album, Phendula, which is already a hit on the airwaves.

Describing the Shweshwe, Nciza said it was a legendary brand for the community of Eastern Cape and that they would not mind Zahara being associated with it.

“If Zahara likes the Shweshwe, there is no problem with her wearing it. We just have to formalise things with Da Gama and make sure things are done properly and that a proper contract is in place,” Nciza said.

However, he confirmed that Zahara, who hails from Phumlani village outside East London, is already the ambassador for the Buffalo City Metro.

Zahara could not be reached for comment.

Anwar Vahed, home-sewing sales manager at Da Gama, said it would be a privilege and a great business opportunity for the company to work with Zahara.

“We have approached Zahara. It was well received. There is not yet a contract in place but we are hoping to make her our brand ambassador. We are hoping she will put our Eastern Cape brand on the map,” he said.

Vahed said they thought Zahara was the ideal person to promote the brand because she is local celebrity, funky and an icon.

“People look up to her, she is simple and down to earth. She has a huge following on Facebook and Twitter and is the ideal person to wear a Shweshwe. We are excited about the prospect and hope that it brings good business for us,” Vahed said.

Zahara rose to stardom with her 2011 debut album, Loliwe, which scooped several awards and made her a household name in the music industry.

The album sold more than 100 000 copies and Zahara walked off with eight awards at the 2012 South African Music Awards – becoming the biggest winner on the night.

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