Forget skinny jeans, fitted t-shirts, bodycon dresses and sky-high heels. According to Gen Z’s, these days, it’s all about soft fabrics, oversized outfits and comfortable, unisex clothing. This younger generation of trendsetters, eco-warriors, digital natives and progressive, shrewd consumers, born between 1995 and 2015, is all about exploring life in new and exciting ways their predecessors haven’t even thought about, starting with their fashion choices.
Cape Union Mart, a leading name in adventure and activewear, introduced the exclusive MMXXI capsule (pronounced ‘Mixxy’ and references the Roman numerals for 2021), an edgier streetwear collection geared towards younger Millennials and Gen-Zs. Inspired by K-Way, this limited-edition range is a real game-changer for the brand. While Cape Union Mart has always focused on inclusive and comfortable activewear, this is their first foray into edgier streetwear geared towards a younger market.
Created by merchandise designers Iska Jordaan and Anri Venter, this exclusive collection is geared towards the new age of explorers; individuals who seek adventure in all environments. Inspired by the streets but made for the outdoors, from urban explorations to nature trails, the MMXXI collection provides style, form and function.
This certainly ties into what today’s young people value in clothing, which is comfort, freedom, function and individuality, according to Martine Vogelman, Group Brand Strategic Director at Cape Union Mart. “This younger generation takes pride in how they show up as it represents how far they can go. They firmly believe that everyone should have the freedom to wear what they want, and that makes them feel comfortable and relaxed all day.”
“To them, adventuring is not limited to the great outdoors. They are constantly on the go, moving, discovering and exploring. They want to be noticed for the ideals they share and the clothes they wear. It’s all about building the only new currency that matters – street credibility and culture. This has, of course, impacted many industries, from food to fashion. Thanks to Gen Z, things are changing, and changing fast.”
Style for every occasion
Athleisure continues to be one of the biggest trends among Gen Z consumers as it combines casual comfort with sleek style; think tracksuits with duster coats, high-end sneakers with smart pants and outdoor gear with sleek lines and patterns.
Vogalman continues, “As the younger generation focuses more on healthy living, it makes sense for their fashion to match their fast-paced lifestyle. Clothes should be made to be worn anytime and anywhere, whether you’re working, shopping, socialising or studying. It’s function and comfort all the way.”
Breaking fashion barriers
With celebrities and social media influencers leading the trendsetting pack, fashion has become about the freedom to wear whatever you want, whenever you want without limits, with garments like unisex hoodies, jackets and t-shirts becoming timeless staples.
Graeme Cuthbert, Outdoor Buyer, adds that the capsule range is not only fashion-forward, but technically sound as well. “K-Way is a brand born in the outdoors, but this exclusive capsule challenges the norm of outdoor clothing – and breaks down the boundaries. We find that this capsule plays in the “outleisure” space; a phrase we coined for leisure-looking gear, engineered for the outdoors.”
“This range is all about functionality and technicality while still being trendy and stylish. It’s a thin line but I think we’ve managed to combine these aspects to create a truly unique and innovative collection of exclusive garments that the younger generation will really love,” concludes Vogelman.
The limited-edition MMXXI capsule will launch at 30 Cape Union Mart stores nationwide on 23 April, 2021. For more information, visit https://www.capeunionmart.co.
About Cape Union Mart
The Cape Union Mart Group is based in Cape Town and currently houses five major retail chains, which includes Cape Union Mart, Old Khaki, Poetry, Tread + Miller and Keedo. The group collectively has over 250 stores. The outdoor division is carried by Cape Union Mart, South Africa’s favourite outdoor store and the group’s flagship brand, which retails across South Africa, as well as Namibia and Botswana. It also exclusively stocks the K-Way brand, which is an extremely popular technical range of outdoor clothing and gear.