Updated: Aug 9, 2020
Bola Nangabe is a clothing line that tells a story of Africa's cultural richness and heritage, proudly weaving bold accounts of desert landscapes and tropical rain forests of Africa seamlessly, in bright and beautiful pieces that are hard to ignore. This fashion label brings together all of Africa's colour, personality and values in one clothing line, making it an awe-inspiring fashion label that is unforgettable.
Bola Nangabe, a Sekgalagadi phrase meaning, Speak Nangabe! is owned by Masego Madzwamuse who lives in Johannesburg, South Africa where she is based. She started this clothing label in 2018 to cater to a niche market that yearned for style that is exquisitely afrocentric, urban and notable. Masego hails from Botswana and grew up in Zimbabwe. Her father from Zimbabwe, and mother from Botswana raised her to be proud of her heritage and to stay true to herself, having the courage to fly high and yet remain grounded.
Masego speaks fondly of her maternal grandfather who gave her the name Nangabe which means 'the care-giver', in his native Sekgalagadi. She celebrates her cultural heritage through Bola Nangabe a dream that came out of having traveled extensively in Africa and the world, and wanting to bring together a collection of Africa to her part of the continent. As the CEO of The Southern Africa Trust, an organization aimed to support civil society organisations in Southern Africa to participate effectively in policy-making, she travels Africa-wide where she gets the opportunity to source the many beautiful fabrics for her designs.
Her appreciation for Afrocentrism goes back a long way; at 19, Masego would be in awe of those women who would accessorize with colourful african fabrics used as head-wraps or draped over their shoulders. These women were most distinctly her professors at university. Her admiration for their style inspired her own look from that young age, and it became her signature style to date.
When we speak of Masego Madzwamuse we speak of an environmentalist and social justice activist of note, who leads by example. Her clothing line is centered around the principles of sustainability; by using sustainable fabrics and empowering local communities she speaks to her own philosophy in life.
BolaNangabe's unique aesthetic gives it a freshness and boldness that is simply classy without trying too hard. Whenever you wear Bola Nangabe, the colourful pieces give you assurance, regality and power with a subtle reminder to stay grounded. Masego holds regular open-days at her home in Norwood, a surburb of Johannesburg. Bola Nangabe is also still a mainstay at pop-up markets in and around Jo'burg. Visit their website bolanangabe.com to get an appreciation of the fashion line. Checkout the capes, which are masterpieces that should be a staple in every wardrobe. These pieces are classics that will be worn for years to come.