Imprint ZA, Orapeleng Modutle, Scalo among 9 fine designers dressing Top 10 Miss SA 2020 finalists

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Top 10 finalists of the Miss South Africa competition visit to Robben Island on September 11, 2020 in Cape Town, South Africa. Dressed by Haute Afrika. (Photo by Jaco Marais/Die Burger/Gallo Images via Getty Images)
Top 10 finalists of the Miss South Africa competition visit to Robben Island on September 11, 2020 in Cape Town, South Africa. Dressed by Haute Afrika. (Photo by Jaco Marais/Die Burger/Gallo Images via Getty Images)
  • Some of the country’s best fashion designers will be dressing the Top 10 finalists at this year’s Miss South Africa live pageant.
  • Miss South Africa 2020 will be crowned at The Table Bay hotel on Saturday, October 24, from 17h00 and screened live on M-Net and Mzansi Magic, and will be streamed live for an international audience. 
  • Just as the Top 10 finalists come from around the country, so to do the nine designers, representing Durban, Klerksdorp, Cape Town, Tshwane, and Johannesburg respectively. 

Hailing from all around the country, this year's selection of some of South Africa's finest fashion designers boasts the same caliber of diversity the Top 10 Miss South Africa 2020 finalists do.

From coastal cities Durban and Cape Town to the inland gems of the Gauteng- and surrounding provinces, beauty in both design and form will abound as the bevy of finalists vie for the Buhle Crown this October. For each leg of the Miss South Africa finale, the Top 10 will be seen in an array of categories dressed by some of SA's top fashion talent. 

“We have some of the country’s finest designers on board this year who will demonstrate how strong our design industry in this country is. The fashion segments were designed to start off with strong monochromatic prints and then evolve throughout the night into an explosion of colour with each contestant wearing a chosen colour of the rainbow to represent the diversity and strength of our Rainbow Nation," says the pageant's creative director, creative director Werner Wessels.

"The filming of this year’s pageant will allow us to showcase some of the fashion as viewers have never seen it before. It’s going to be a finale to remember," he adds.

READ MORE: The Mantsho X Zozibini Tunzi 'Fearless' T-shirt we'll all be wearing this summer is finally here

Kwa-Zulu Natal is represented in the opening sequence at the pageant by House of Fabrosanz, founded by Durban-born Sandi Mazibuko. 

Miss SA designers
Image supplied by Ninesquared Communications and Events 

The Top 10 Miss South Africa finalists will be dressed in the atelier’s ready-to-wear Nguni print collection.

Sandi says “it was important for her to translate Zulu culture into wearables. The Nguni print draws inspiration from the traditional art references of the Nguni tribes. It was so easy to design for each of the finalists after meeting them and seeing their body shape. We made them ‘fashion girls’ and they will get to walk in the pageant like they would do on the runway.”   

Cape Town’s Lena Lisa was approached to design the evening gowns for all the Top 10 finalists which will be shown towards the beginning of the live show.

Miss SA designers
Image supplied by Ninesquared Communications and Events  

“This year the brief called for a design that is simplistic but refined which then translated into a timeless look. We conceptually approach pageant designs to have more flair and dramatic accents. It’s not about capturing an individual personality but rather to complement and enhance the underlining theme of the pageant.  2020 is going to be a very competitive year, the finalists are strong, driven women," said Lena-Lisa.

READ MORE: Miss Universe 2019, Zozibini Tunzi, earned her crown in this local designer's showstopping gowns 

This year’s dazzling apparel in the swimwear sequence has been created thanks to a collaboration between two fashion houses – originally from Cape Town, Imprint ZA (the outerwear) and Cape Town’s TracyB Swimwear (the costumes). 

Miss SA designers
Image supplied by Ninesquared Communications and Events 

Mzukisi Mbane, who heads up Imprint ZA expresses that he feels "blessed that Imprint has been worn by many previous Miss South Africa’s - from Basetsana Khumalo and Rolene Strauss to Zozibini Tunzi."

"For the pageant, we have created an edgy look but we still respect the element of class that the platform requires. I see my brand as a storytelling tool and celebrating the stories and glamour of our African ancestors with a very modern and futuristic feel,” the designer explains.

He says he is motivated by this year’s Top 10; “I fell in love with them over social media as we followed the Miss South Africa journey during lockdown. I am inspired by how they represent literally every South African woman. Meeting them in person only made me fall in love with them even more.”

Tracy Efstathiou is the face behind TracyB Swimwear which was founded in 1990. 

miss sa designers
Image supplied by Ninesquared Communications and Events 

Tracy and her team collaborated with reigning Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi for a shoot in Mauritius and now she has worked with the Top 10 on an eccentric African-inspired swimwear range with a sexy, yet sophisticated feel.

Tracy admits that when designing for a pageant she makes her designs “a little more conservative” adding; “I think these 10 finalists are an amazing group of strong and beautiful, talented contenders that are inspirational to a broad spectrum of women. I’m enjoying the diversity of culture and backgrounds where they come from and it’s refreshing and exciting to see how each one has something unique to offer.”

READ MORE: Is Africa ready to be a luxury fashion hub? 

Five designers will each to get dress two Miss South Africa finalists in glamorous finale evening gowns fir for international runways.

Let's meet the designers and their muses:

Anel Botha of Anel Botha Couture 

Miss SA designers
Image supplied by Ninesquared Communications and Events 

Dressing: Jordan van der Vyver and Lebogang Mahlangu 

“Jordan and Lebo have shining personalities, strength as people and inner and outer beauty. We have also researched the current trends in fashion to create these gowns which are a celebration of the female form. The right design on stage will give them the confidence to achieve their goals.” 


Juan Visser of Juan William Aria

Miss SA designers
Image supplied by Ninesquared Communications and Events 

Dressing: Thato Mosehle and Karishma Ramdev 

“This year at Miss South Africa I get to dress both the doctors! Both these ladies are charismatic, caring, giving and share a passion for medicine. If I had to choose the one thing that I love the most about each of them, it is Thato’s ability to light up a room while Karishma has the biggest heart. For the finale, both my designs are sleek and sexy but yet sophisticated. I took inspiration from evening gowns from the ‘80s and ‘90s.” 

Neville Masondo of La Art Neviole Emporium

Miss SA designers
Image supplied by Ninesquared Communications and Events 

Dressing: Melissa Nayimuli and Chantelle Pretorius   

“For this year’s pageant I’ll be designing two most gorgeous couture dresses with very simple outlines and a dramatic hand craftsmanship. This year’s brief was creating rainbow themed gowns so expect some bright colours. I also fused new era trends while sticking to my aesthetic of new versus old styles.”

READ MORE: Eastern Cape born Esihle Mhluzi is creating access for physically impaired models and student

Orapeleng Modutle of Orapeleng Modutle Style Avenue  

Miss SA designers
Image supplied by Ninesquared Communications and Events 

Dressing: Shudufhadzo Musida and Aphelele Mbiyo 

“The gowns are definitely inspired by the beautiful ladies, tapping into their personalities, their strengths and where they see themselves in the future. Each gown represents them in their true nature. For me it’s always about fashion and capturing moments that resonates with historic fashion moments taken from fashion icons like Elizabeth Taylor, Miriam Makeba, Princess Diana, etc. Shudu and Aphelele are my current obsession. They are smart, strong and intelligent but both are completely different. We feed ideas off each other to come up with a beautiful creation.” 

Sello Medupe of Scalo Designer

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Dressing: Busisiwe Mmotla and Natasha Joubert    

“I’m loving how different the girls are – they both have their own stories and uniqueness. I collaborated in the design with Busi and Natasha because I wanted them to be comfortable at the end of the day.”

Johannesburg’s Juan Visser has also dressed a number of former Miss South Africa winners, including Zozibini Tunzi, Demi-Leigh Tebow (neé Nel-Peters), and Tamaryn Green.

Additional information and images provided by Ninesquared Communications and Events on behalf of the Miss South Africa Organisation

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