ALNlewks.

Bushfire Style

The fire was brought and of course this was an opportunity for me to play dress up. Not that I need a whole music festival to do so, but it certainly amplifies everything because other people make an effort too. It’s no Afrika Burn, although some people did try take it there with their outfits.

Friday: I spent the 4 or so hour drive down to Swaziland in this (minus the kimono). I really should’ve worn something for the trip and then changed, because setting up the campsite was a sweaty exercise. I wore this vintage styled Levi’s cropped tee with red ankle length pants, holographic silver platform shoes and a custom crop robe from .ing. The kimono did all the work to be honest. When it gets sun it just shows off all sorts of detail on the colour morphing fabric.

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Saturday: This was a day of wigs and nip slips. Mama got a new wig and Monicah came out to play in military green realness. I was in an olive green short jumpsuit given to me by a friend who happens to have a man who makes amazing clothes – thanks Siphosihle Masongo! I’m so bummed I didn’t do a pic of the back because there was more detail and the word ‘Future’ in gold. Bad ass short brunette bob, brown boots and moon bag to finish off the lewk and hit the main day of the fest. Gag!

Bushfire Style 2018

Sunday: I was actually going to do this lewk on Saturday but really glad I didn’t. It just worked better as a “mellow” Sunday vibe – I mean those pants are totally church service worthy! I had them made by Fashimo Styles for an event last year and re-used them this time with a white Style Collusion tee, black wool beanie and tan Palladium boots. I had a few people ask me what “AF” meant… It happens. This day was the funnest one and I loved hiking up my pants to carry them up stairs like a ball gown. Small joys.

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All very different lewks to throw together, but the weather allowed me to do the most and I obliged. Saturday night was the only day I did a whole other outfit, but I didn’t take any pics. Would’ve been nice…

All the travelling, partying, camping, boozing and cruising left me spent so I’ll try have the pics and festival lowdown out this week. Until then, have a fab rest of the week. Hey June!

xo

ALN.

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#FOMOFridays

#FOMOFridays

I’m on my way to Swaziland to bring my fire and frolic among the hills and mountains of Ezulwini Valley. Bushfire 2018 is finally here. I was such an Eager Esther that I got early-bird tickets last year already (just as well, it’s completely sold out!). A few weeks back I wasn’t sure I was ready to get back into a tent after spending 5 days in one in the desert, but I’m ready to do it all over again with a new vibe. Being a festival kween I invested in a camper bed – it’s just a blow up on a 3 foot stretcher. A small luxury really. Now all I need are some side tables with drawers. 😀

I’ll give you the full run down when I get back. For now back to addressing the FOMO of it all. I’ll be across the border when this gets published, but let me share some events I’m bummed to be missing out on. This weekend is L-I-T in Joburg!

Watching:

 

This week was all about the Billboard Music Awards for me. I’m not a Royalist nor have I watched Suits so my inake of the Royal Wedding was limited to tweets, instastories and Facebook feeds. I sure loved how there were black folk being great all up in there. Get it Meghan.

The BBMAs were on Monday morning here and the first thing I woke up to was Normani doing that triple twirl hair flipping drop into an ass up up semi split!! She is not here to play with no one!! Bye Fifth Harmony! Fave. Kelly Clarkson’s voice is bananas. K-Pop is clearly a global thing. Xtina and Demi were shouting – love the song though. Dua Lipa needs some energy injected into her and Janet Jackson is G.O.A.T. I only really cared for the performances and some acceptance speeches. Oh… Taylor Swift is the Anne Hathaway of music. Really great gal, super talented and sweet but ya.

I obvs got sucked into a documentary again. This time by this 2015 doccie about the prison sentence that is Scientology. It’s nuts! Started by one man, made to be a religion to avoid taxes and snatch up money from it’s followers. All I knew about it was Tom Cruise and John Travolta but it’s so dark and sinister. Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief is on Netflix (I really need to check out other tv sources). Other than that I haven’t seen anything new new. Kimmy and Tituss are back and trying to adult May 30th, so that’s gonna be a crazy treat.

Listening:

 

Like doccies, I’m hooked on podcasts now. I can’t wait until they become a real thing in South Africa and the continent. Or maybe I’m just behind the times and American culture is saturating everything in sight. Tell me please!! I did find that Lady Skollie has (or had) a podcast called Kiss & Tell out and a few others focusing on hip-hop culture and comedians. I use CastBox for my podcasts, but there are a ton of other players. Sound Africa released a new one this week titled “Freedom For Sale“. I love how they used a Superbalist style sales banner for this episode. It looks at the major events of corruption surrounding the arms deals’ from during the apartheid era up until now with state capture and Zupta. Very well produced and edited. Ooh Ayiba Magazine has a list of African podcasts you can check out here that I just found while typing this.

Music wise I discovered Noñameko’s Goddess Vol. 1 on Sunday. A friend posted it on FB as a seven colours “playlist”. It’s so good. Perfect for an easy Sunday. Jazzy with all the right trimmings of soul. I need to delve into her earlier offerings, I really like her vibe.

Doing (Weekend Tingz):

 

Like I said earlier. Joburg is doing the most this weekend. I tried to cover a mix of cool parties, foodie vibes, and the arts. Anything else I’m sure you’ll pick up along the way. I really only look for things myself or my friends are interested in. Do share if you have other things out of my radar.

So Glory vanished without so much of a goodbye. I know some of you knew and went to their last hoorah but I knew nada. Anyway, they are bringing their delicious Asian streetfood menu to Breezeblock tomorrow in Brixton. Damn I miss that chicken.

There is a special screening/exhibition at Hazard Gallery all weekend (25-27) of a dance film by Thami Majela called A Last One In Color. This one is right up my alley. I’m all about dance films with artistic expression. I hope they show it again at some point. Bioscope please tu.

Tariro Foundation, which was started last year by a group of young exceptional young womxn are hosting an imbizo looking at the topic “Exploring contemporary barriers to success for African women and how they can be overcome” is at Allan Gray tomorrow. It will have various speakers on the panel including newly appointed chancellor of Nelson Mandela University, Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi. I really hope they do a Facebook Live for this one to reach those who can’t get there.

Feel Good Series is back again. My second favourite party in Joburg (after P_party of course) will be at Dorkay for its 10th installment tomorrow. I feel like I don’t have to tell you much, but go! It’s always guaranteed fun and the city views are a bonus. The Tennis Club is hosting A Night of Talented Womxn for the second time in Joburg tonight. Diverse local and now international musical talents will be doing their thang. Live performances and DJs from the best. Another monthly rooftop fave Koolin’ In The City is sure to tear it up for a Sunday vibe at 77 Commissioner. Expect drinks specials, daytime games like 30 Seconds and music from Jozi’s finest.

I wasn’t kidding when I said it’s going down. Month end madness. Make sure you dress warm, the sun we’re getting now is essentially just for light. All events have links for tickets, times and venues. My treat.

Have the best weekend lovelies!

xo

ALN.

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That other week my housemate Andrew and I took a young drive out to the Cradle for the annual Nirox Winter Sculpture Fair. The weather was gloriously sunny with a welcomed autumn crisp in the air. For some reason I thought because it was Mother’s Day it wouldn’t be too crazy, but everyone had the same idea to go on the Sunday rather than the Saturday. As crowded as it was it was lovely to see familiar faces.

Parking was a bit of a mare, we spent hours queuing at the food stalls (probably why I don’t have any pics of the food and wine stands), but it was a great day out guzzling bubbly, eating yummy overpriced seafood paella, and playing Rummikub on the lush green lawns. Besides the resident works that are always there I enjoyed a lot of the exhibited sculptures which included some mixed multimedia, glass printing, stonework, metal, LGBT+ activism and simple paper tag wishes on a tree. This gallery is mostly for people who have never been to the park as I had some friends who had never even heard of Nirox. Enjoy and be on the look out for their winter musical events.

ALNgoes.

Winter Sculpture Fair-y

A small gallery of my visit to the American Express Winter Sculpture Fair on May 13.

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ALNlewks.

Weekend Mirror Style

I love me a new week. Leave behind the last and make the most of what’s ahead. I had a manic week last week but the weekend allowed for fun and alone time. Onward to my recap with my daily lewks. 😉

Friday: Fridays can be a jam at work. We hosted a technology day for our colleagues to get to learn what the nerds under CTIO do. I’m not saying I’m one of those nerds… but I helped with a colour coded presentation for my department. *shrug* I had fun with this lewk; A “masc” element with a vintage navy New York Yankees sweater, white button up from Asos, cute baggy looking grey pinstriped ankle length pants and red New Balance 373s. My first pair of NB’s before the obsession started. I randomly wore mustard and white polka dot socks because that morning I looked at the sneakers and wishing they had some yellow on them. Make it work.

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Friday

Saturday: Friday went from after work drinks, to a great birthday dinner in Norwood, to a sweat inducing, house-party feeling good vibes only jol at La Santa to eventually a necessary underground after-after party at Toy Toy. I couldn’t Saturday until I had to meet friends at the Joburg Bubbly Festival in all black with a biker jacket, ripped at the knee jeans, Reebok classics and finished off with a multi-patterned monochromey scarf. Didn’t expect to have as much fun as I did at the fest, also discovered some new wines.

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Saturday

Sunday: Stayed in watching Netflix documentaries (they are always an easier watch then starting a whole new series) for most of the day until I got cabin fever and decided to grab a late lunch. BGR and Starbucks were my targets; bit of beef, splash of lemonade, little coffee. Sorted. Threw on black ankle length pants, black jaguar printed button up, denim jacket and my spacey reflective elite edition New Balance 580s. The glasses where for an extra bit of accessorising. Just nje, nothing serious. Got some air and went straight back to bed. Happiness.

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Sunday

Praise be for my next two weeks that will only be 4 days long thanks to Bushfire Festival out in Swaziland. Next week will be a Bushfire Special of weekend style. No mirror of course. Go forth and do the most this week. I can’t believe May is almost done. Wow.

xo

ALN.

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#FOMOFridays

#FOMOFridays

Well it’s winter. If this week was a movie trailer for the actual winter months – I want NOTHING to do with it. No ma’am! Keep your box office. Keep your popcorn. Keep your damn slushy. No!

By the feel of things this may be a ‘staying in’ type of weekend, but who ever really knows with Joburg. It has a mind of its own, and it’s best not to try figure it out. Opt in and out when you allow.

Watching:

This week has been hella busy. Work is being a bit of a mare at the moment and I also went and start a creative writing course on top of all this blogging as well as attend things. My watch-list is naturally on the decline. I did discover that Amazon Prime Video is in South Africa. I didn’t even know that. You guys are the worst! If you didn’t know – check it out. They also do their own original shows, films and doccies like Netflix. I did a throwback to Parks & Rec while I was browsing through. In the world of streaming options are clearly everything. I’ve barely scratched the surface tbh. Oh I did manage to finally catch the first episode of The Handmaid’s Tale season 2. It’s a helluva lot. I’m taking it slow on this one. I cannot.

Listening:

I’m still on podcasts. They are just the tastiest things to consume in the car and at work. At work I just need to remember to not burst out laughing when listening to my new find called Nancy. It’s a show that’s essentially a platform about the LGBTQ experience and highlights how no experience is ever the same for anyone. So far I’ve heard stories of coming out to an Asian mom – multiple times (sounds like my coming out to my Xhosa mom!), hunting down a gay porn movie star and a young closeted gay adolescent seeing themselves in a grown lesbian store owner and imagining for the first time what it might look like to being a grown up gay person. Representation! I was asked where I listen to my podcast, Spotify and Apple have them but I just use CastBox which is solely for podcasts. New this week I’ve been jamming to my friend Sandiso aka Mx Blouse‘s new killer track “Is’phukphuku” which also came out with his first video ever. It’s so good you guys. I’m obsessed. I also want every look in that video. Since jamming last week at Tennis Club with Carla and Spoek from Batuk I’ve also been all over their new album Kasi Royalty. It’s an instant party and a dream for playing while driving (or in the Uber).

Doing (Weekend Tingz):

As soon as I got to this section I realised it may not really be a weekend spent in doors. With the mumps pandemic going on in my friendship groups I really don’t know, but there are cute things going on that I’m keen on. Today is the start of the Joburg Bubbly Festival in Hyde Park which will be popping off all weekend. I think I’ll do a Saturday sundowner sitch if anyone else is going.

Before that I’m so excited to be attending choreographer Stella Dlangalala movement class tomorrow morning. Saw a video on her insta and it is all I’ve wanted from dance. Can’t wait. Join if you wanna get the body doing thangs! Market Theatre has a new play starring John Kani called The Train Driver until June 3. Heard about this one from a lady in the writing class and she was raving.  

Jozi Walks is on it’s second year and doing walkabouts around 11 neighbourhoods in the city including  Soweto, Maboneng, Hillbrow, Newtown, Marshalltown and more. This is going on all weekend starting tomorrow.

Loads going on and next weekend will be worse! I’ll be in Swaziland for Bushfire so there may not be a #FOMOFridays next week. All the events I’ve mentioned have links to their FB events for times and venue info. Comment below and let everyone know if there’s anything else involving food, sunshine, music and good times. Kisses!

xo

ALN.

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The Whole ‘Victoria Yards’

I don’t know what my obsession is with choosing my blog post titles from movie titles but it just keeps happening. I really miss my days of being a movie buff. So two Sunday mornings ago I got sent a flyer by a friend for this ‘Open Studio Vibes’ sitch that was happening at some place called Victoria Yards. I’d never been to this place let alone heard of it, but I knew I had to go. As a liker of things I will always try out new things at least four times. Victoria Yards just needed one time to hook me.

It’s situated in Lorentzville towards the east of Johannesburg. Approaching it you can instantly see it’s been redone, repainted and re-energised. I don’t really know what the space was used for before but it seems like the developers (who apparently developed 44 Stanley) wanted to keep it as raw and not overly worked as possible. You can tell by the presence of a lot of exposed brick, minimal painting and rusted iron on the roofing.

The title of ‘Open Studio Vibes’ was just that. The yards are split into a number of studios used by visual artists like Blessing Ngobeni, Dario Manjate (who does magical things with magazine cuttings), controversial painter Ayanda Mabulu and artisanal artists like Tshepo The Jeanmaker and HĂ©lĂšne, an interesting jeweler who has moved here from France. More studios are available for anyone wanting to rent the space to work, create, sell and even teach.

Surrounding the grounds are vegetable and orchid gardens planted as part of an agricultural project to promote job creation as well as generate some income for them. Speaking to the creative who manages the space who ended up giving us a cute little tour of the space, she stressed how working with the community around the newly developed space is very important to what they want to achieve.

Soon they will be having their own farmers market where locals can sell their own produce to customers who come in from all over the city. More so the artists and artisans who own studios are obliged to provide skills development and apprenticeship to empower individuals of the community who will then also share this knowledge to others.

I have no doubt that this space will thrive and become something great. It offers a variety of well-made creations from its residents, a small brewery should you become a bit thirsty and peckish and eventually open event spaces which could be used as galleries, private parties and as a function hall.

I’ll be sure to let you know when they have something again, keep your eye on the #FOMOFridays post. Otherwise pop in and check it out for yourself it’s gonna be a total thing.

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Weekend Mirror Style

Ok first of all… this weather is so rude! Like who has time to be wet and cold and drive in the mad Joburg roads?! All I can say is that I’m grateful for the great weather we were served with this weekend. Managed some cute sunworthy lewks on the days I managed to wake up and do stuff. Goodness, did I just ramble on about weather? Let’s go!

Friday: As per usj I had to show up for work. Yawn. Swindled some Hershey’s Kisses in a meeting which was pretty sweet. Everything snowballed from after work drinks at The Royale where shots were involved, a surprisingly fun excursion to Rockets Lolitas for a North side razzle and finally jamming with Batuk at The Tennis Club. All this hopping about was in a black Adidas three-quarter tee, black ankle pants and black paint splashed Asics Gel Lytes. Loved this look. Love black!

Weekend Mirror Style

Friday

 

Saturday: As you can imagine from the day before, I was unable to do anything during the day. Slept my LIFE away! Don’t try such things post 30 years old kids. It’s not cute. I only managed to go to a birthday house party in Randburg but that didn’t stop me from turning it out in my new (well old – cos vintage) grey and black striped kimono with black polo-neck, black knee length skirt and white Asics Lyte Joggers trainers. Black again.

Weekend Mirror Style

Saturday (night)

Sunday: After plenty more sleep and an early night, the house houseband and I headed to Nirox Sculpture Park for the annual Winter Sculpture Fair. Nirox is always a great little getaway especially when you can appreciate art in such a great setting. It was hella crowded, but it never disappoints. Kept it Sunday with a chunky mustard jersey over a white button. Custom made wide-legged wrap pants (holla if you’re into them) and cream leather Puma Basket platform sneaks.

Weekend Mirror Style

Sunday

An all round goodie. I put on some Britney circa ‘Slave4U’ this morning to push through this gloomy ass day. Do your thang, make this week your biatch!

xo

ALN.

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#FOMOFridays

#FOMOFridays

I’m back in full swing! Fully re-integrated into society and loving it. I somehow managed to survive a full 5 day working week. How did we do it gang? The public holiday fiesta is sadly over. Sigh. Looking forward to a nice mellow weekend though.

We all know it’s Mothers Day on Sunday and this used to be a particularly hard day for me. Since seeing the medium it’s gotten a whole lot better knowing my mom is good where she’s at and showering me with blessings. You lot must have a good one with your beautiful mamas, they truly are everything! ❀

Ok let’s do what we came here for!

Watching:

 

Now that I’m back to being a social beast again I’ve barely watched much. I’ve been between Netflix and Showmax. I checked out Maya Angelou’s amazing doccie ‘Still I Rise‘. She’s featured in the film and shares her life from growing up in the racist American South to becoming an esteemed writer and poet who also sings, dances, acts and directs! She’s been lit. Like last week I stumbled upon another crazy animation that’s on Showmax called Animals. It’s an HBO show so you know it’s a strangely dark and hilarious mess. If you like talking animals who sort of act like people; like incestuous gay cats, clubbing sex crazed rats and steroid pumping pigeons… Ya gotta watch this show! I’m obviously hooked.

Listening:

 

I’ve mostly been listening to podcasts this week. Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations have been my daily bread. I guess I’m craving inspiration and a sense of greater thinking. You can blame the Burn. It’s been great hearing about other people’s struggles, triumphs and philosophies on life. RuPaul’s What’s The Tee is a constant. They have the best guests from Emma “Baby Spice” Bunton to the outrageous Tituss Burgess from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. If anyone has a stash of great local content on podcasts please let me know. I only ever see radio show recordings. Doesn’t seem like a thing here yet. Music wise nothing much really. Just jamming to Christina Aguilera‘s new singles and patiently waiting for her first album release in 6 years coming in June. Finally! That last abum was a forgettable mess.

Doing (Weekend Tingz):

 

Been craving this weekend after an entire 5 day week! What’s the word Jo-hannes-burg?! I have a medium to busy af weekend. Today has has two things on my radar. After work drinks for sure, and the fact that Batuk are launching their new album Kasi Royalty tonight at The Tennis Club! Discovered this crazy and fun group, which includes Spoek Mathambo, at Bushfire one year and loved their whole flavour. So will defs pop in for a razzle there.

Saturday will probably have the regular brunching and crunching in catch ups and sunsets. Episode JHB has their last rooftop party (Episode Five) before full blown winter hits from 4pm at Negritude African Emporium. DJs, city views, good times for sundowners me thinks.The Nirox Winter Sculpture Fair is now labelled as the American Express Winter Fair. Seems to be getting bigger each year for them to land this sponsorship. This year sees Dr Esther Mahlangu (that’s right! Dr!) collaborating on some art works and international artist Yoko Ono who I think has works she’s been travelling with. Are they collaborating? The fair is on Saturday and Sunday at Nirox, I’m going Sunday. I don’t think there will be tickets at the door, so come correct if you’re into this vibe.

Sunday will have a ton of Mother’s Day things. I saw that Bioscope is having a whole day of movie screenings of some faves including Mermaids with Cher, Winona and Christina Ricci. Check their FB for times. It’s just Nirox for me, so let me know if anything else is happening in the city.

Events have links to the FB events for times and venue info. Be sure to comment below so we all know what’s good. Take it easy. Keep it breezy!

xo

ALN.

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I haven’t done an ALNthrowback in a minute so here is a recent one in gallery format. While I was at Afrika Burn I met one of the kindest, loveliest, most beautiful and severely talented photographer from Mexico, Mariana Martinez de Alba. We instantly fell for each other and showered one another with love and appreciation… Oh and took the most insane pictures ever!!

It was so easy to perform, come alive, express and just be my gender bending self in front of her lens. The product was Brutal! The name of this series of photos was inspired by Ceci, Mariana’s sister. Ceci reacted to one of the photos we had taken by yelling out “brutal!!!!” in Spanish (Pronounced broo-tal). We all instantly died and I had to know the meaning as I wasn’t sure if it was the same in English. It was the same and much more. Basically savage, fierce, sick! It’s all in the way you say it.

My fellow hunty in brutalia Treyvone is also featured in the shots. I’ve been gagging to unleash these. I hope you like them as much as we do.

Brutal Motion

Brutal Xscape

Brutal Glam

Brutal Twilight

Follow this gorgeous gem of a human on her Facebook fanpage for more of her Afrika Burn photos and other work. Gracias Mariana, mi amor. ❀

ALNlewks., ALNthrowbacks.

BRUTAL: Aya x Mariana

A beautiful and unintentional collaboration with the talented Mexico based photographer Mariana at Afrika Burn. This is Brutal.

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ALNlewks.

Weekend Mirror Style

This has to be one of my favourite weekends this year! I know… Quite a big statement. We are on month 5 and there have been some WEEK ENDS! This particular one was just a nice variation of catchups, me time and a whole lot of being out and being at 3 places in one day with 4 sets of different people. Pretty much sums me up really. Extroverted introvert who is a secret recluse but also super social. Helped to have my instastories to act like a fool on camera while being alone at home all day. Anyway… This is about the lewks! Leggo!

Friday: The 9 to 5, then met up with my Jozi fam for a young catchup. We tried out the new spot in Linden called Van Der Linde. Great food, amazing cocktails and beautiful space. Working and dining was done in a grey polo-neck, ripped jeans, brown boots and an olive coat. Loved this colour combo. Autumn realness!

ALN. Weekend Mirror Style

Friday

Saturday: This was recluse-ville day. I only left the house to go to a yoga class in the morning. Unwashed, uncombed and unbothered. I did this in a white tee and these red harem pants. The lady at the Whippet was so confused because she’s only ever seen me styled out. Loved it. Alas, no pic in the mirror. Great day though.

Sunday: This was the world tour day. Brunch at The Richmond, Victoria Yards (which I’ll be doing a post for) and The Pan African Rum Fest and Kitcheners. A lot of a lot. Maybe I was making up for staying indoors all of Saturday, but I had one of the best Sundays ever. All with different people, vibes and energies. Thanks to everyone I saw, y’all are great! All this running around was done in my new fave, an imported white tee with PRADA and the Spice Girls printed on it, black ankle length pants, cute ass black leather platforms and a tartan print beret. Not gonna lie, I was living for this look. Spiced up my life for sure!

ALN. Weekend Mirror Style

Sunday

 

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