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Yaya Mavundla says nomination affirms that her brand is growing

Reality star is contesting against Bonang and others for Fashion Muse of the Year Award

Masego Seemela Online journalist
Yaya Mavundla elated to be nominated for a Fashion Muse of the Year Award at the Fashion Industry Awards.
Yaya Mavundla elated to be nominated for a Fashion Muse of the Year Award at the Fashion Industry Awards.
Image: Supplied.

The road to being considered a “fashion muse” was one transgender activist and reality TV star Yaya Mavundla didn’t think she’d travel.

From her early years as a child, Mavundla knew that the fashion sphere was a place she wanted to co-exist in, a move that has now secured her a nomination for a Fashion Muse of the Year Award at the Fashion Industry Awards SA. She’ll be contesting against the likes of Bonang Matheba, Phumla Citeko and Yasmin Furmie.   

“I’ve always loved fashion from a young age… I remember wearing a plastic rice bag after converting it into a skirt, that’s how much I loved dressing up and fashionable looks.

“Growing up I always knew I wanted to be in fashion spaces and now being nominated is such an honour.

“When I heard I was nominated, I was first in shock and overwhelmed with excitement… I am very grateful for being recognised. This means my brand is growing.”

Having stepped into the industry in 2012, Mavundla recalls her very first fashion show that was hosted in Durban near the coast. She remembers how fulfilling the experience was that motivated her way of pairing clothing and pieces together.

“I grew up in a space where of course, we didn’t know the fashion lingo, the wigs, clothes and all. I then moved from being inspired to hosting my very own fashion shows.”

As she firmly continues to inspire the younger generation with her role as a transgender activist, Mavundla hopes her nod from the industry awards will help set as an example for one not to underestimate themselves.

“This recognition is to say to other trans-women that it’s possible considering where I come from. It means we are acknowledged and we are finally put in a space where we are seen as equal with others.

“One thing I am so grateful for is the relationship I’ve built with Gavin Rajah and the support he’s given me. The magic we are about to create together will be historic.”

Here are five fashionable looks from Mavundla that SMag totally loves:

Mavundla also flashed backed to one of her most memorable looks.

Yaya Mavundla at the 2014 South African Music Awards.
Yaya Mavundla at the 2014 South African Music Awards.
Image: Supplied.

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