14 Mar 2024 ///


A decade has passed since the initial launch of Woolworths’ ‘Style By SA’ concept—a first-of-its-kind approach that redefined our understanding of how brands could draw on the unique perspectives of real South Africans, who are doing incredible things, to nurture the country’s landscape through shared collaboration. 

As we say goodbye to summer and begin to welcome the crisp, freshness of autumnal air; Woolworths are back with their latest edition of #STYLEBYSA, the re-invigorated series of the same lineage; as it invites us into the personal orbits of some of South Africa’s most influential creatives in 2024. This seasonal shift to cosiness and comfort is led by Yanga YaYa; soulful musician, medical doctor and multimedia artist, as he curates a Woolworths edit rooted in 90s nostalgia, with notes form the ‘eclectic Grandpa’ trend sweeping the internet – all the while punctuated by Yanga’s authentic, optimistic approach to curating his life path. Dr Madlala to some and Yanga to others; this is an artist who has mastered left and right brain thinking, to dream up big things for himself, and in turn – inspire our nation with his voice, knowledge and determination.

“As a musician in South Africa, I draw most of my inspiration from personal experience, and the experiences and stories of the people that are closest to me” says Yanga, on what inspires his sonic expression, like his latest, soulful track ‘Moment to Myself’. Yanga’s commitment to charting the rich, emotional tapestry that colour his life marks him as a voice to watch, as Yanga explains the hope he feels now, “for the kind of music that I make, there hasn’t always been a space for it – but I do think that’s changing. I think of how connected we are today; opportunities to collaborate across the world have become more attainable.” On the kind of South African future Yanga is dreaming up, he notes that “my hopes and dreams for South Africa is that everybody should be allowed to exercise their right to choice without any hostility or coercion. I also hope we can remember that as important as governance is for a country to move forward, I do think it’s not the only thing that’s important. In our own small corners, we can do something to better our lives and the lives of those around us.” 

For his curated edit, Yanga’s self-styled campaign is a dripping in the nostalgic reverence for a bygone era. With the saturated, moody aura of film photography, Yaga’s direction is clear; he’s an old soul for a new age, “the pieces that spoke to me the most were the oversized items – it was quite fun to bring back the 90s and early 2000s, but mix it with the ‘eclectic grandpa style’, if you may.” 

On the collaboration itself – a creative process that Yanga abides by firmly in his own artistic journey – he notes that, “I loved working with the team that I worked with for this campaign. It was amazing to work with incredibly talented young creatives with gifts and professionalism that makes me very optimistic for where our future is going.” 

With Woolworths’ ‘New In’ for March, Yanga’s pieces share that elevated Fresh Prince of Bel Air energy – you know, Will Smith being one the 90s greatest fashion icons? Oversized but sharp, layered and cosy. Think, warm fleeces paired with rugby golf shirts or the perfect pair of denims? Count us in. 


Written by: Holly Beaton

For more news, visit the Connect Everything Collective homepage www.ceconline.co.za

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