Where to Buy Clothes Made in South Africa

local clothes

Looking for clothes made in South Africa? There are so many physical shops that stock locally-made clothing items, some of which are very unassuming and totally affordable.

1. Young Designer’s Emporium

No list of stores stocking South African brands would be complete without the indispensable YDE. Most of the clothes are made with imported materials but in South African factories. The designers, too, are all up-and-coming South Africans which is another plus. YDE’s best for formalwear for occasions like graduation but there are always pieces for every day.

Many of the accessories are actually made in China but the brands are South African; you are still contributing (profit) to the South African economy.

The prices are nearer R1000 than R100 but if you hang around for the sales, you’ll get the best of both worlds: local and affordable! YDE is also good for investment pieces, with some truly gorgeous winter coats!

2. Mr Price

Mr Price was once the local textile industry’s natural enemy but it has now worked hard to sponsor the industry. It’s no longer Made in China central. You don’t even have to check the clothing labels to find “Made in South Africa”; they’re advertised on the price tags now. They’ve done multiple lines of clothing designed by local designers, and you’ll find every major clothing item is available in a locally-made variety. And, of course, Mr Price is very affordable.

3. Pick ‘n Pay

Pick ‘n Pay’s Real Clothing brand has a scattering of South African-made items. I’ve bought a pair of pyjamas for under R200 that was locally made. Pick ‘n Pay has also picked up on the consumer demand for clothes made in South Africa; you’ll find it proudly displayed on the price tags or with little stickers.

 4. Edgars

A good department store with several South African brands, Edgars offers items across the price range. Unfortunately, many of the branches have been closed but there are still a few around.

On the higher end of the spectrum is Levi’s. Although an American brand, their jeans are manufactured in South Africa. Edgars’ in-house brands also sometimes stock styles that are locally produced, often marked with a South African flag sticker.

5. Tsonga


Tsonga is top of my list for locally-made footwear (they also do gorgeous bags). Although it is imported, the use of leather means Tsonga shoes will last longer and are also more comfortable than plastic shoes. Gone are the days of dark black and brown leather; Tsonga’s leather comes in bright jewel tones and metallic hues, as well. Many of their shoes also contain memory foam soles for arch support — pure bliss, every time! Some of the styles are a bit granny-ish and touristy but others are the perfect blend of fashion and comfort, such as the Emfuleni and Ethuso styles.

Tsonga is pricier than Mr Price, for example, but the leather really does mean that your shoes will last longer. (I’ve had a pair of espadrilles that I wear multiple times a week for over three years).

Another positive about Tsonga: the items are hand-stitched in a small village, Lidgetton, in Kwa-Zulu Natal, meaning that rural South Africans do not need to migrate to poverty-stricken cities in search of work.

6. Bay Harbour Market

This lively market in Hout Bay is host to plenty of South African brands. They’re mostly small businesses with eco-friendly or locally-made ethos that emphasise good quality. There’s plenty of affordable jewellery, accessories and some pricier, but attainable, clothing.

7. Greenmarket Square Market

You can’t go too far wrong with a meander through Greenmarket Square’s market. There are plenty of small stalls selling hand-crafted, local goods (although many sell similar stock). Price-wise, things are totally affordable: a few years ago, I bought a stunning blue leather satchel for just R120! There’s a wide selection of souvenirs but locals can enjoy browsing for jewellery, leather goods and homeware.

8. The Space


The Space offers quirky designs in luxurious fabrics. The store is a great supporter of local design and production and browsing is always a pleasant experience. The items are priced in the same range as YDE but the designs are quite different: the clothes are more conservative, better tailored for the average South African body, with smoother fabric, and often quite quirky. Don’t expect sparkles or plenty of tulle; for classics like the LBD, the Space is a good bet.

9. Made in SA

As the name says, everything in this store at the Waterfront is locally produced. The shop is targeted at tourists so not everything in it will appeal to locals. However, for jewellery, you can’t go far wrong. There’s a great variety and the prices suit every budget, as well.

I really do recommend this store for buying gifts: there’s a lovely range of bath and skin products; affordable and unique sterling silver necklaces; and knick-knacks like bottle stoppers.

There is also a selection of clothing but it is mainly earmarked for the tourist: t-shirts full of “Cape Town” and the Big Five.

10. Foschini

President Ramaphosa recently wore a Foschini suit to the State of the Nation Address, pointing out that it was made locally. As the president indicated, over the past few years Foschini has transformed its supply chain to centre clothes made in South Africa. Nearly half of the retailers’ offerings are locally produced.

Foschini’s got a great selection of clothes that combine comfort and style. The prices aren’t cheap but they’re not high street prices either.

Shop at Stores that Stock Locally-made Clothes

There are, of course, plenty of tucked-away stores that supply South African clothes but these are some of the best, most accessible bets. If there’s any other store that you think should be in the top ten, let me know!

Jenna Solomon

Jenna is a journalism, African studies and social development graduate. She writes about active citizenship and lifestyle in South Africa.

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