H&M South Africa has called on The Threaded Man‘s creative director, Siya Beyile, to launch their new 70’s inspired range to the market. Siya Beyile is one of the influencers that H&M has brought on board to translate their product to the young black market in South Africa. The project consists of a digital lookbook creatively directed and styled by Siya with the new Elegance range launching in stores in Autumn.
Following H&M’s bad reputation having only launched in the country in Novemeber last year, it seems the brand was eager to localize with our influencers. H&M was recently dragged for their filth after responding to a Twitter complaint about the lack of black models in their South African stores by saying that “we want our marketing to show our fashion in an inspiring way, to convey a positive feeling” thereby implying and associating aspiration and positivity to whiteness only. H&M is definitely not the first international brand that has come to our country and failed to localize for this market nor will they be the last.
This new collaboration with Siya Beyile is definitely a step in the right direction; not only showing how to localize products for our market but also that working with young black influencers and creatives may be the key to unlocking the black millennial market. Siya had this to say about his direction of the lookbook and campaign,
I wanted to create something special that represented the power and confidence that women had in the 70’s, paying tribute to great women like Diana Ross, Iman and Beverly Johnson. I hope that when our reader who are women see this, they feel inspired.
It’s pretty clear why we’ve chosen this campaign as our first Lookbook Love selection; Mzansi Melanin Ain’t Never Shined this Good.