It’s been a year since South African based 466/64 made its foray into the fashion world and now the label is on a global quest.
Founded by Nelson Mandela (four, double six, six, four) isn’t just a bunch of random numbers picked out of a hat. The digits symbolize the period when Mandela was a prisoner for the cause he was willing to sacrifice his life for – 466 was his prisoner number and the year he was locked up was 1964.
It’s hard to imagine a historical figure like Mandela, who turned 94 on Wednesday, dabbling into fashion design, but he obviously is aware that as his country’s resident statesman, lending his name to a new venture can do wonders for its outcome.
In honor of Nelson Mandela International Day, the apparel line made its North American debut at the South African Consulate in New York. The program consisted of a live fashion show followed by speeches delivered by the two new faces of the brand – South African songstress, Lira and model Sam Sarong. The collection is definitely geared towards the young and hip, and showcases variations of dresses, denim, T-shirts, shorts and shirts all dipped in vibrant hues and bold prints.
As part of 466/64’s global invasion, licensing structures have been secured and finalized. Company b, based in Dallas will oversee the U.S. and Canada markets thanks to their new working relationship with Brand ID, an offshoot of South African based leading clothing and textile giant Seardel.
The website is now live and is saturated with a range of merchandise for men, women and children as well as a healthy portion of accessories. The brand also plans to be a part of New York Fashion Week in September which should help support their long term goal of populating department stores by next spring.
Of course anything with Nelson Mandela’s stamp of approval has to have some humanitarian spirit behind it. The goal is to utilize the success of 466/64 for the betterment of the citizens of South Africa through job creation. There is also a foundation set up – 46664 Foundation, which will help with societal initiatives as it pertains to philanthropy.
The “Africa Rising” theme is certainly not running out of steam anytime soon!