Talent, they say, is never enough, especially when you are in an industry as fierce as fashion. Especially one where funding is a major setback for emerging young designers who must have the passion to create a fortune.
Affordable or high end, let’s take you through a list of the most successful designers in Nigeria right now.
Deola’s celebration of African glamour and prints has gained her international fans such as Oprah Winfrey and Will Smith. She has also gained a lot of recognition for her work with awards such as the MNET/ Anglo Gold African Designs 2000 awards.
Zizi is one multiple award winning designer who has sold to the international audience the fabrics and style of Nigeria.
Zizi became a household name, thanks to a number of celebrities including Susan Peters and Eucharia Anunobi rocking her pieces on the red carpet.
Clement Mudiaga Enajemo sits atop Mudi Africa, one of the leading fashion designing and clothing outfits in Africa. His outfit has branches in Ghana, Senegal, Nairobi and Johannesburg in South Africa.
Popular MUDI Africa may not be the most famous designer in the world, but he is a force to reckon with in Africa. He is the first Nigerian designer to take his designs outside the shores of this country.
Her fashion brand, Tiffany Amber, was launched in Lagos in 1998 and has become an iconic label in the Nigerian fashion industry. The brand has four standalone stores and boutiques in Lagos and Abuja.
She was the first recipient of the Designer of the Year award at the African Fashion Week in Johannesburg in 2009 and was also awarded Fashion Brand of the Year at the ARISE Magazine Fashion week in 2011.
Ohimai Atafo is an award winning Nigerian male designer and owns Mai Atafo Inspired clothing outfit.
His designs aim to portray the Nigerian man’s unique personality, probably why has been labeled the hottest male designer.
The first lady of America, Michelle Obama, wears him
He has truly taken everything that is the Nigerian culture, spirit and turned that uniqueness into a classy, elegant fashion statement.
His designs are colourful, controversial combinations of African prints in classic tailoring.
Starting his career as a model for many fashion houses like Dakova to Nikki Africanna and TV commercials then becoming a model manager; Frank Oshodi has since ventured into areas like choreography and finally found his niche in makeup with his label, House of Bunor and Fashion designing.
His name became widely known when he was selected to be the make-up artist and designer that finally landed Agbani Darego the Miss World 2001 crown.
Lisa perfected the art of wearing ankara through the use of ornate embellishment; she transformed the fabric, creating a global print and turning the label into a coveted luxury brand.
Each Lisa Folawiyo garment boasts a handcrafted and unique history from inception to construction.
Ade Bakare Couture was established in 1991. Thereafter, Ade started selling his collection twice a year (spring/summer and autumn/winter). His clients were boutiques situated in various parts of England and Scotland.
Ade Bakare’s designs have been described as classic with a touch of modernity using fabrics such as wool, silk, lace and crèpes but he is currently celebrated for his gazar and organza sweep coats which are both ultra-feminine and luxurious.
Anthony has created pieces that can make an ordinary Nigerian man look like a multimillion dollar businessman. His very suave men clothing line, Soares Anthony, is dedicated to creating a picture of sophistication and luxury.
He is inspired by Nigerian fabrics with the tailoring of Japanese excellence. Not only are his styles unconventional, they are also very attractive in a masculine kind of way.
This Ondo princess has become quite a sensation in New York. According to her blog; ‘I got interested in fashion because my grandmother was a designer, she designed Nigerian traditional clothes. That was my first introduction to fashion.’
So with this inspiration from her roots, she came to New York, to take the fashion scene by storm. Inspired by the Obama campaign, she created the Obama print dress with the words ‘Olowa gba President Barrack Obama’ boldly printed on it. This brought her into the fashion limelight in the US.