14 Dec 2018
Jonathan D’s suave, successful business man and entrepreneur, Charma Maluleka, recently returned from New York. We caught up with him and had a little chat to find out more about his trip from early October to late November, asking all the tough questions.
JD:What were some of the highlights of your trip? Iconic locations, food, people you met, etc.
Charma:Kissing a beautiful Latino lady and having her call me ‘Papi’ was pretty memorable…hahaha, just kidding. Actually, my biggest highlight was work related. I went there to do work for one client but ended up freelancing for two big companies and a few independent clients. The work I did for my initial client was so well done, that they recommended me to other companies, and I ended up staying longer than planned. I forged very strong, valuable and beneficial contacts, so now I have a solid business network in New York. I have received a new job offer to go back in Feb/March 2019. We are still in negotiations, but it looks like it will be happening. I made new, beautiful friends, money (getting paid in Dollars is such a great feeling) and went out partying every chance I got, so I pretty much had a full 360-degree experience. I worked hard and played hard.
JD:How does the fashion sense of South African men of distinction compare with that of New Yorkers?
Charma:New Yorkers are more open, or should I say brave, to try a new look. They play around with different and unexpected outfit matches, colours, styles, etc. I feel South African men play it very safe compared to NY gents.
JD:What style inspiration has this trip awakened within you?
Charma:I most definitely realise that I appreciate the “classic man” look – that “well groomed” approach to style. I’m looking forward to experimenting more with formal looks, suits, waistcoats, trench coats, etc.
JD:If you could design one item for JD men’s wardrobes, what would it be?
Charma:A classic, perfectly fitted suit, waistcoat and a wide selection of really classy formal attire that has the Jonathan D swag. I attended a few gala dinners as well as several black tie and cocktail events wearing current JD wardrobe essentials, and realised this is the time to turn JD fashion into a statement!
JD:Did you get any comments of compliments from New Yorkers, seeing as you wear JD so well?
Charma:Yes definitely! The new JD shoes really had people stop and compliment me. Especially the RS7 and Monk formal. Also got compliments for the way the jeans fit, but I think this had to do with the squats I had been doing at the gym, hahaha!
JD:What NY style item did you really like?
Charma:The way the gents make waistcoats look so classy and stylish. The NY gents really know how to wear their formal gear so well they look like they’re all models off to a photoshoot.
JD:Have you brought back any items from your trip that is a must have for summer?
Charma:It was right in the middle of their winter, so didn’t have many summer options. I bought a few winter tracksuits, boots and accessories for the 2019 winter season.
We asked Charma is he has any words of wisdom for the men of SA and this is what he had to offer.
“Fashion wise, I would really love to see JD spread outside of South Africa. I think the brand’s style would do really well on the global market. I think JD is well on its way to catering more for the modern, classy man who wants the Hugo Boss look on a tighter budget. JD is the “stepping stone” for the man who is on his way to great success. I was always dressed in JD in NY and I fit in really well, so the brand is definitely on par with international standards.
Outside of fashion talk, I would really like to encourage all the young people out there to aim high and not be afraid to dream big. I’m still in awe with all the opportunities I have been blessed with, from the rural village of Elim in Limpopo, to doing what I do best in the streets of New York. But it all had to start with a dream, passion and consistency in chasing that dream.
For 30 years of my life I never travelled outside of the SADC region and now have been to the United States of America twice in 2 years through my work. Never chase money, chase excellence and money will automatically chase you. Pray, work hard and be resilient in your pursuit for greatness. If there is one thing you can never waste your money on, it’s traveling the world as you learn so much and that allows you to open up your mind and gain really valuable life experiences.”
At Jonathan D, we love to see young South Africans reach the pinnacle of their professions, no matter what career they choose. Not only do we keep you up to date with the latest in menswear, but we encourage you to develop the whole man. What you wear is an expression of how you feel about yourself and with JD you are always more than prepared for success. Thank you for making us your style choice this past year and we are looking forward to bringing you more of the same distinction and quality style you’ve come to expect of us as a brand in 2019. Enjoy the festive season!