Prints and florals get loud for summer

A good bargain is never hard to come by when you are browsing through the rails of Ilva Mackay’s vintage clothing brand A Good Find (AGF).

The December holidays are almost on our doorstep and many of us will be wanting to invest in some key pieces for summer without breaking the bank.

Ilva’s brand AGF, which was launched a year ago, offers good quality clothing at a fraction of the price.

Back at her pop-up store in Kuils River, she tells me that she initially studied interior design at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT).

She worked as a set designer and wrote art and design stories for Cape Town TV.

Ilva soon became restless for a new challenge. She found herself working at a big retailer but longed to follow her entrepreneurial instincts.

She launched her second spring/summer range at the beginning of September.

Ilva says she sources her clothing from various cities and said due to a number of clothing factories closing down, a lot of “dead stock” has been left behind.

Her latest range was sourced in Johannesburg and she happily remarked that 50% of her stock has already flown off the rails.

“I launched it at the Kuila Market here in Kuils River and close to 400 people turned up. The affirmation and feedback from the customers were phenomenal,” she said.

Ilva says that one-piece jumpsuits are still trending for summer.

“Capetonian women love them. It’s very chic and simple,” she said.

Loud prints, stripes, tunics are also on trend at the moment.

Must-have items for this season also include crop-tops and high-waisted skirts.

My great find for the day was a crocheted crop-top and high-waisted denim skirt.

I paired them with my black satin Japanese inspired sliders, which I am loving for the transition into summer.

Ilva says for summer, women should invest in signature pieces to help with layering and also for going from work to sundowners. “I believe in buying on-the-go items as form follows function,” she says.

Ilva does not have a favourite fashion designer but says she is loving the evolution of the Korean fashion scene. “Their fashion is tailored and they use very good fabrics which is what I really like,” she said.

Florals, off the shoulder dresses and statement sleeves are also on trend this summer.

At Ilva’s studio I also came across a white shirt-dress for less than R200. White is a great colour for summer as it keeps one looking fresh and radiant. Pair it with a wedge sandal and sling or moon bag and your look is complete.

Ilva says three-quarter pants are definitely a must for men this season as well as “gigolo shirts”, which is a loose fitting shirt with bright florals or patterns.

Resort wear, also known as nautical wear, is also on trend this summer.

The look comprises shorts, kaftans, light denim, long dresses for women and sandals, which are very fashionable but easy to wear.

Ilva said it’s important for people to venture out of their comfort zones when experimenting with new looks.

“I recently sold a purple velvet shirt to a man. He was scared to try it on but when he did he completely loved it.

“I also sold a woollen waistcoat to a woman and I took her completely out of her comfort zone.

“Everybody wants to look good and relevant but nobody wants to look the same,” she said.

Asked how she comes across her “good finds”, Ilva replied: “They find me”.

The AGF stall will be in Bree Street, Cape Town, at the next First Thursdays event on Thursday November 1. You can also visit the AGF’s Facebook and Instagram pages.

Send your fashion tips to mika.williams@inl.co.za