A young star on the rise, Rich Mnisi has been setting fashion ablaze with his fashion label, OATH. With a cutting edge blade in style, his work puts him ahead of quite a list of his peers. Humble and devote to his talent, Rich Mnisi is seemingly going to be one of this country’s best exports. We have a few moments with him to catch up on his anticipation for his appearance at SA Menswear Week.
South Africa’s first-ever menswear week and you’re showcasing on day one. Are you feeling any pressure?
I’m so anxious, I’ve never been so nervous about a show; the 1st day is saturated with amazing designers.
You’re showcasing as our favourite in the CTFC Young Designer Presentation – How does it feel to be placed within that spotlight?
It’s really humbling and encouraging. This only inspires hard work. When I found out I was showing with Lukhanyo Mdingi I was so happy. Literally a few weeks before that I hunted him down on social media just to tell him how amazing he was. Such a talent! He thought I was crazy but Ithink he understands now.
It would appear as though your brand developed overnight. How have you managed to keep up with yourself and your brand, Oath’s, growth?
The best thing I did for myself and the brand was to get a business partner, responsibilities are split. I could finally focus on the creative and creating the brand I’ve always wanted.
Your first collections were dark, very graphic, with spots of colour here and there. Cuts were very square and masculine. Can we expect the same for SA Menswear Week or will we be surprised with colour?
It’s definitely reminiscent of my debut collection but edgier and slightly brighter. Just come to the show!
How has the consumer and the industry responded to OATH?
Very well, they understand the brand. I’m glad they understand brand.
Do you see more men opting for a more edgy look as opposed to the typical suit and bowtie ensemble?
The ‘typical suit’ is so great when done right! It becomes the edgiest thing in the game. But yes, absolutely, the menswear industry is growing really fast and more and more men are going for boxy silhouettes, layering, prints and colour.
What do you think is influencing this?
We’re exposed to more and the streetstyle scene/tumblr babies are becoming hotter by the day, so it’s more accessible then it was before.
What can we expect from OATH in the near future?
We’re working on 3 very exciting projects in the next few months: Design Indaba in 2 weeks, MBFWJ Next Generation soon after and we’re launching our own Online Store.