Young designers have, for a while now, been churning out collections that are not only in line with global trends, but also rooted in an narratives familiar to us all. 

Nao Serati is one such designer. On their website, the designer describes the brand as follows: “My clothes are informed by South African youth culture, picking up on the visual cues, the rebellious attitude, and the spirit of innovation.”

Indeed, Johannesburg, the city where Serati is based, is recognised globally as a microcosm of creative street style sensibilities, owing to the eclectic vibe that is evident on the streets of Braam, Maboneng and other parts of this vibrant city.

Last week, at Lexus SA Menswear Week, Nao Serati proved once again that Nao Serati is a brand to watch, producing an athleisure collection that imbued luxury without being inaccessible. The colours, hues of pink and blue, communicated a sense of indulgence without being pretentious. Zalebs fashion editor Sandiso Ngubane caught up Serati, to find out more about the brand.


Designer Nao Serati
What is the ethos behind your brand?

As a young brand, our ethos or character is still being designed as the brand grows. But we love telling youth stories and communicating for the young. And I feel like right now that means; World Wide Web; comfortable with gender issues, vocal and comfortable

As a designer, how do you set out on creating a range? Essentially, where does the work begin?

The work always begins with an experience and a song. I always sketch ideas but everything changes when real clothes start to be made and the outcome is the outcome

As far as Menswear Week is concerned, what makes it an ideal platform for you?

Menswear isn't a conversation that is always been had, so menswear week is always exciting because it's always fresh ideas. My design peers at SAMW are always pressuring each other to take it to a new level, which is fun for us as designers and hopefully the audience.


Looking at emerging designers like yourself, where would you say South African fashion is headed?

Fashion in South Africa is very young, so it's not easy to tell exactly where it will go. But young consumers are interested and ready to buy from South African designers work. We’re just waiting for them to afford it

Who is the ideal Nao Serati customer?

The ideal Nao Serati customer is anybody that is interested and free of mind. People interested in having the conversation.

Where and how can people buy Nao Serati?

Nao Serati is currently made to order so anyone that is interested in buying can email