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Tropics Runway : Unknown Union at SA Menswear Week AW17

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Taking place twice a year in Cape Town, South Africa, SAMW aims to provide a world-class platform for menswear designers and brands to showcase their latest collections.  A series of shows over three days, only the best of menswear is invited to be on the schedule each season.

The goal is to be the leading platform in terms of innovation, trends, production and most importantly, the promotion of designers and brands such as Unknown Union.

Unknown Union was established in 2011 with three goals in mind; to root the company within vibrant communities outside the fashion mainstream; to allow the richness of each community’s art and culture inform the location’s design and aesthetics and to employ members of the community to both manufacture and inspire quality collections for the global citizen.

The first iteration of this concept took us to Cape Town where we broke ground with a boutique and design lab that reflects Cape Town’s unique and vibrant culture with a menswear line incorporating the rich, indigenous textiles of the region. From the intricate printed patterns of South African shweshwe textiles to the vibrant wools of the Basotho mills, our collections are born from the art, culture and community that surround us.

All development, from pattern-making to cutting and sewing, takes place at our in-house atelier. For the designers, artisans and tradespeople that work here, the collections represent an authentic expression of their voice in the global community and a proud example of workmanship that reflects decades of experience. For the rest of us, these collections offer a unique way  to collaborate and share in the rich histories of the cultures and people that produce them.



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