We’ve noted how clothing and apparel as an industry have given opportunities to many young people in Zimbabwe to start businesses. Many have popped up across different types of clothing and a reasonable number have made their success lasting. Today we look at Desiigner Jay-Tee who has his business S.o.G Clothing spread across casual wear, bridal wear and even claims the honour of dressing popular Zimbabwean musician Winky D.

Flamboyant dresses, sleek suits, and striking colours are what speak out to me when I look at Desiigner Jay Tee’s catalogue. He has done some remarkable work through the years. S.o.G Clothing has been in existence since 2015 and seems to have found a corner in the market that they defend very well. The designs have of course grown and the design language has evolved. The adaption of what is considered traditional African colours and prints to modern and popular clothing designs is a success key for Desiigner Jay Tee.

In the early days, S.o.G clothing produced casual and smart casual outfits. The trend towards the use of Ankara’s colourful prints and styles for something other than the popular African attire was how they started making their name in the business. A brave twist on something that was set in the market. Making smart casual shirts for men with a hint of colourful patches and panels was the first foray. This was swiftly followed by going into other popular casual wear items like t-shirts and caps.

While they did branch out into t-shirts and caps, the focus of S.o.G clothing was always on adapting those African prints to blend into smart casual wear. Looking through their Instagram you can see the progression. Another popular fashion item, jackets were added to their collection and have managed to stay. Today you will find the collection is large covering smart casual, formal, casual, jackets and bridal wear.

Partnerships have also played a big part in the growth and strengthening of the S.o.G clothing brand. We’ve already mentioned dressing Winky D, one of the most popular Zimbabweans certainly for a generation. It doesn’t stop there as you will also learn that S.o.G counts popular figures such as rappers NobleStylz and BlacPerl among their clientele, with NobleStylz also being a brand ambassador. Enzo Ishall is another popular character that S.o.G. Clothing counts among their partnerships. This is vital for anyone in the clothing business. It is very difficult to separate clothing from popular culture and this is not a Zimbabwean phenomenon nor is it something new. The world over fashion is influenced by popular culture in the form of music, film and TV just as much as it influences these media. Recently Jay-Tee was celebrated for dressing Roki and Kofi Olomide for their collaborative music video.

It was perhaps inevitable that dabbling with colourful African print cloth and leaning towards smart clothing S.o.G clothing would eventually lean hard into bridal wear. And they have done so stunningly. The emergence and growth of the Roora/Lobola (bride price ceremony) squad is an opportunity that S.o.G Clothing has grabbed with arms wide open. Dressing both sides of the bridal party with amazing collections is an advantage, of course, that’s double the business. It’s not just bride price ceremonies however as they also provide white wedding wear.

Desiigner Jay Tee has received recognition for his great work. In February 2017 he picked up the Bulawayo Summer Fashion Award for best male apparel designer. An honour that was received after battling it out with 19 other accomplished designers. Not one to sit back Jay tee through S.o.G clothing has also sponsored awards shows including the 2018 edition of the Chitown Music Entertainment and Lifestyle Awards. The fashion industry is deeply integrated into many parts of popular culture and to make it is ideal to play with others in this manner.

The African prints and bridal wear have been big success areas for Jay Tee and S.o.G clothing but that doesn’t mean they will be limited to those areas. A recent launch of pants suits for women shows that the business understands needs in the market and will move to provide fitting solutions, no pun intended. S.o.G is available on Instagram and Twitter. You can also catch up with Jay Tee on Instagram, Twitter and WhatsApp.