Nigerian Student Fashion & Design Week (NSFDW) was established in the year 2013 and has held five consecutive editions. Its major motive and goal is to give a rare once in a lifetime international showcase experience to talented young fashion designers at the grass root who normally may not be able to afford to showcase at major fashion weeks.
The fashion week themed Fashion & the Millennial shall commence from the 2nd of September through to the 8th of September 2018 at different locations in Lagos with the grand finale holding on the 8th at Federal Palace Hotel VI.
NSFDW has grown not only to become one of the most successful fashion events in Nigeria but one of the top 15 fashion weeks in Africa and the leading fashion brand in Nigeria known for discovering fresh fashion talents.
Aderayo Aminat Animashaun started her brand “De’rayo” because she got tired of seeing imported fashion product such as shoes, bags, cloths and accessories in the Nigerian market, so she set up a manufacturing company that design and produce creative pieces that celebrate our culture and tell our African stories. African’s rich culture and fabrics inspires her designs. She highlighted her biggest fear when starting out as reaching her target audience and best way to sell to them.
She describes her collection as “Afrocentric and Impulse” and believes superior finishing, more fashion training and quality of production will go further to place made in Nigerian products a better placing in the international market. Expect to see a De’rayo collection on NSFDW runway that showcases Afrocentric products that tell the African stories.
Nniu Concept Designs was conceptualized by Nneoma Nwosu whose love for fashion and telling amazing fashion stories through her exquisite designs began a journey of a talented fashion brand. She also cities designers such as Dior as her top fashion inspiration in her career. Her creativity and designs are generally inspired by her everyday lifestyle from African fabrics, to group of people, trends and even love.
For her brand to stand out, “I believe using actual Nigerian/African textile, Nigerian/African art, telling real Nigerian/African stories would definitely live a mark. Also working with skilled trainable artisans. Collaborative projects with outstanding designers with whom I have a common goal with, staying true to my designs, paying close attention to details, and also considering the wearer’s needs”.
On NSFDW/AFWH Partnership, “If given the opportunity to showcase at AFW in Houston, America. I will take advantage and make the right impression to Africans and the international fashion market by showing what Africa/Nigeria is really made of. From our indigenous textiles, to our crafts, to our stories and as much as I’m inspired to incorporate, and infuse all that in such a raw but refined way into my creation. For me, it’s about showing our Gold (the African Gold) to the world”.
Nellygrace Chika’s love for Ankara inspired a fashion line, she was able to change the “traditional Ankara” look to a modern vibe for young ladies. Her biggest fear was being able to satisfy women of all shapes and sizes.
Chika’s designs are inspired by her clients and social media trends. Her collection will consist of Ankara casual outfits, asoebi lace styles and evening gowns.
On Preparations for NSFDW2018, “I have so far worked with my role models online and offline, and have sought advise form those who have been there before. I have also gotten support from professional tailors who are well experienced in drafting and fashion illustration in other to come out with the best I can”.
For Aliyah Abdulazeez & Soliat Abdulazeez of Twinfingers fashion, being in the fashion industry came naturally as it has been in the family for years. Their biggest fear when starting out was getting a viable location that will meet their aspirations for the brand they are building.
They have chosen NSFDW platform to showcase their designs because of its years of building, nurturing and showcasing emerging designers in Nigeria. Their creativity is inspired by Nigerians’ growing consciousness to fashion and seeing other designers creating innovative pieces that inspire a huge market of fashion lovers.
On Preparations for NSFDW2018, “Firstly, our collection has been gathered from some designers’ inspirations all combined to form a distinct and different concept, also through teamwork, sharing ideas, time management and delegation and dedication”.
For Helen Osung the Creative Director of Daniella’s Fashion World, her love for fashion came naturally and quite early from her childhood days. As she got older, it became clearer what her career choice would be although her biggest fear when starting was the capital and electricity to meet up with client demands but she sailed through.
She describes the distinctiveness that makes her brand stand out as “my creativity, diligence, quality and durability, because those are the major factors that guide our day to day dealings in the fashion industry”.
Ogounchi Adebola started her fashion career as a tribute to her aunt whose love for crochet was inspiring, ‘I wanted to give a tribute to my late aunt Francine who was fascinated by crochet. That’s even the meaning of my brand name (L’uF stand in French for L’Univers de Francine which means Francine’s Universe). Before passing away she bought a lot of yarn threads and crochet books.
Unfortunately, she couldn’t use them. So one day I took the threads and the books she left; I learned from the books and start making stuffs which I was given free to my friends. So people were calling me and were asking for the tops or headbands I have made for this or that person. (I couldn’t even price them). So this is when I decided to turn it as a business. One of my closest friend advice to me showcase at a fashion show, SOB fashion week Benin. And I really like the pressure before the event; the stress behind the scenes; and I also develop Love for work well done. This is what led me to embrace fashion as a career”.
On choosing NSFDW, “I saw the potential; the professionalism and the scope of the event, but especially the opportunities that arise for young designers and new people embracing fashion industry. I was on BellaNaija website when i saw an article from Sharon Ojong’s Vlog: “The biggest Fashion weeks in Africa. So I took a look and I was captivated by NSFDW because that’s what I was looking for”.
For her designs, Adebola gets her materials from different parts of the world like France, Ghana, America and a lot of shops in Africa selling quality yarns. The business of fashion is a big drive for her especially since her family is yet to understand her career choice.
Fatoyinbo Olumide Caleb launched Muse Couture because of his love for fashion and how he could use it to express his feelings and emotions of others. His biggest fear starting out was meeting up to the standards set by established and strong emerging designers in the industry.
As an emerging designer, he sees Nigerian Student Fashion & Design Week as a platform to introduce and showcase his designs to the fashion industry.
On his expectations from NSFDW2018, “I’ve been following Nigerian Student Fashion and Design Weekfor a long time, even before my brand started. I got to know about NSFDW on Instagram three years ago. And since I’ve been following. My expectations this year is this edition is going to be massive and it will also push me beyond my comfort zone”.
For Muse Couture, he draws inspiration from nature and personality; and also defines his collection which he will showcase as “Royalty”.
When asked how to change the opinions of Nigerians in diaspora who believe ‘Made in Nigeria’ products lack quality and how that perception can be changed, he shares “My deepest desire is to have my own fabric production company, where every material for my collection would be designed and produced by me. And before that would become a reality, to make my brand stand out I will ensure that the production of my collections meet the standard of my targeted audience”.
On AFWH/NSFDW Partnership and if given an opportunity to showcase in Houston, Olumide states, “I will take it with joy and gladness and make the most of it. And make sure the international market sees the uniqueness of African fabrics and creativity”.
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