Clothing That Works
Ergo Zen was created out of a passion for soft blended cotton fabric. We believe in clothing that allows the body to breath, making loose- fitting premium blended cotton apparel, which is extra-soft, light in weight, durable and breathable. Ergo Zen dresses are graceful in appearance and drape sensually over the African woman’s curvy physique.
A WORD WITH
Designer and Founder of Ergo Zen
What made you want to become a fashion designer?
Watching my mother design and sew her own garments growing up was where it all started for me. I honestly didn’t realise that I’d find so much fulfilment being a fashion designer until just over a year ago, when I started to learn about designing with intent, hence the slogan “Clothing that works”.
What style are you best known for?
Best career moment so far?
Winning the Nelson Mandela Bay Fashion Week prize to supply The Space, Winning the Vukani Fashions Awards and being recognised by Sonwabile Ndamase president of SAFDA as one of the best emerging designers in the country. The best of all is being able to supply The Space. The Space felt like home from the first time I stepped into one of the retail stores, little did I know that that’s exactly where I’d start my career in retail. I’m a great believer in natural law, particularly the law of attraction and a great part of the Ergo Zen story serves as testimony to it being valid.
What item of apparel would you never go on holiday without?
I’d never go on holiday without my Ergo Zen blended cotton scarf. It can be easily transformed into a boob-tube top, short skirt, hairband, head warmer, a shawl to keep warm or simply a summer or winter scarf.
Where do you find daily inspiration?
I’m inspired by African tribal history, Mythology, the cosmos and the oceans formlessness. I’m also inspired by nature and human behaviour - good and bad - all of which is relative.
designer for Ergo Zen
Nozuko Ngcizela’s first forays into fashion began in the back of her mother’s boutique, rolling fabric around a long-suffering little brother’s body to create her own designs. She got in trouble as a five year old for taking scissors to her mother’s material, but this was no passing fad, and Nozuko has been fashion obsessed as far back as she can remember.
Fast forward some years and she is the proud owner of her own brand, Ergo Zen, with a focus on elegant easy-wear created from comfortable, breathable cotton. Ergo Zen employs a team of four seamstresses, and is looking to employ a further five in 2017 to support Nozuko’s rapidly expanding business.
(from left) seamstresses Margaret Bramwell and Valerie Kettledas
and production manager Nomhle Ngcizela for Ergo Zen