Culture Code

Street Urban Fashion & Urban Kasi Food

For many years, the street and urban fashion scene in SA has been thriving. Sometimes, it’s almost underground with specific signatures, much like a gang, those in the know, will know!

The hoods, towns and cities each have their own flavor, sometimes only 5km to km apart. Since the rise of the influencer scene in 2014, many fashion lovers have found their niche and even built a career from their signature style. There’s no doubt, much of the style signature the influencer depicts is inspired by international trends, but as always, the rebels we are, add our own flair and grassroots signature in interpreting streetwear style.

Generally led by the youth and most noticeable in major Urban centres, just as leisure fashion takes its lead from performance fashion, mainstream fashion often adopts the street fashion trends presented by influencers on their social channels.

Street style isn’t just big and chunky, or out the box designs and translucent material! It’s all about artists interpreting something existing and owning it.

Rules of Street Style

There’s only one rule in order to be classified as streetwear – there are no rules. It’s like taking the traditional styles and dissecting them. Here, in streetstyle land, everything is fair game.

You can take a hoodie and mix it up with button ups (even sleeveless ones) or wear a suit with sneakers. Mix denim with formal or sneakers with formal, the more you break it down, the more it makes sense. Who ever thought you’d see a guy wearing a silk scarf on his head?


Making your mark in the streetwear culture is all about revealing your personality and feeling confident to do so. It’s not about translating other people’s style codes that might cause you to doubt your style choices, it’s actual benefit is to style and dress without rules and as you see fit.

Why not share your creations with us. Post your streetwear look, tag @SkipperBarSouthAfrica Facebook page using the hashtag #OwnTheCity, tag a few friends, who knows, it just might be the start of a new career.

When you either live or work in the city, you’ve got to eat, read on for the low-down on delicious meals.

The pungent smell of paraffin and cooking oil; a bucket of dough and slices of polony and cheese within close reach, these are the delicacies seen each morning on most every corners in the city.

Behind these box walls sit local mamas making and selling amagwinya or vetkoek for city dwellers and workers in the CBD. This deep-fried and filling dough has become the most beloved breakfast for many people, and to a point, where mornings are not the same without it. Grabbing one or a few, customers satisfy their hunger often on the move, at their desks or in office kitchens by those who ply their trade in the inner city

A kota, very similar to a bunny chow, is either a quarter or half loaf of white bread and filled with tasty ingredients like polony, chicken viennas, eggs, cheese, and served with chips. The chips are usually “slap” or limp deep-fried and favoured by South Africans countrywide. If you see a man standing behind the open window of the shack, the scent of chips being fried that’s when you know you’ve found the right spot to buy from.

When the kotas are ready and packed individually into plastic bags, you grab and walk to a nearby Spaza shop to buy a cooldrink, then sit on a bench or street curb, munching – you want to eat it whilst it’s hot.

Think of the kota as an evolving township street food burger. Other popular fillings around Johannesburg include mince and mash and fish and chips, available at roadside spazas and backyard eateries like the one we visited. Its name varies from kasi to kasi, some call it Sphatlho or bunny-chow and you might even find a version with sliced bread, much like a dagwood sandwich. Some days I have to admit defeat; I eat the fried egg and some of the chips, but can’t manage to get far with the soft, fresh bread of my kota. I make a mental note to take up the challenge on another day.

Shisa Nyama

Barbeque, braaied meat or shisa nyama is hugely popular in the townships across the country. This is evident based on the prolific emergence of hundreds of braai shops that have popped up in the suburbs of Johannesburg, both downtown and in the newly revived city areas. There is a huge demand for township street food. That’s why you have establishments like Sha’p, a shisa nyama joint in Maboneng and a chain of traditional eateries called Chesa Nyma countrywide.

Many people who now live in the city, want the taste of traditional home-cooked food. Finding a shisa nyama helps to curb the longing for home, and it feeds ones nostalgic side – and due to the amount of shisa nyma’s locations, getting a taste of home is quick, the meal hot and tasty.



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