The Nigerian fashion industry is unarguably one of the most outstanding in Africa. The unique fabrics and innovative designs, patterns and styles make for stunning outlooks, for both males and females.
Creativity and Innovation are the order of the day. Nigerians love to wear trendy outfits for their various engagements, and an increased tendency towards socialization amongst the Nigerian population has led to the increase of fashion designers to meet the growing demand for trendy wears.
Since the turn of the century, Nigeria has witnessed an increase in the number of fashion designers who practice the trade professionally. Several top individuals have even abandoned their secular university education to follow what they described as their ‘passion’ for fashion; and, years down the line, they have begun reaping the rewards of their decisions.
At the moment, there appears to be more female professional fashion designers than males. Amid the crowd, few of them stand out for their innovation, creativity, popularity and general contribution to the Nigerian fashion industry.
This post explores the top ten female fashion designers in Nigeria.
1. Folake Folarin-Coker
Folake Folarin-Coker is the creative director of Tiffany Amber. She is one of the most influential personalities in the world of fashion in Nigeria and Africa. For two consecutive years, her works were displayed at the New York Fashion week. She was the first female fashion designer of Nigerian and African origin to achieve such feat.
Folake Folarin-Coker is known for her impressive colour combinations, fashionable designs and elegant accessories. Her innovativeness in the field of fashion design has earned her recognition by top organizations like Forbes and even CNN.
2. Lisa Folawiyo
Lisa Folawiyo is fast becoming a household name in the Nigerian fashion industry. This incredible lady started her career in fashion after graduating with a degree in law from the university. The change in career path took many by surprise, but she was determined to follow her life-long passion in the industry.
In no time, she had carved herself a niche in the sector. She not only makes clothing attires and designs, but also jewelry and accessories to mach. She prides herself in being capable of dressing up any woman for any occasion, and putting in the right finishing and accessories.
3. Zizi Cardow
Zizi Cardow is perhaps one of the country’s finest fashion designers that specialize in making styles and clothes with lace and Ankara fabric. She also makes different classes of undergarments for females, and all her works speak of her ingenuity in the craft. Unarguably, she is one of the most innovative fashion designers of this generation. Her works have fetched her several awards both in Nigeria and outside the country, and she has been featured on international platforms many times.
4. Deola Sagoe
Deola Sagoe is the undisputed queen of Nigerian prints. She is one of the few fashion designers who are capable of making clothes for both male and female folks. Her corporate and cocktail designs have drawn widespread acclaim from top showbiz stars all over the world, including the likes of popular Nollywood Actor Will Smith, TV Show Personality Oprah Winfrey, and a few others. In fact, she is credited as the one who designs for Naomi Campbell.
She has also won lots of awards on the African and International fashion scene, and she shows no signs of slowing down. She is the first ever female black fashion designer to have her collections featured at the Alta Roma.
5. Lola Faturoti
Lola Faturoti is one of the country’s fashion designers who plies their trade overseas. She was born in Nigeria but eventually left the country for the United Kingdom to study. After her studies, she relocated to the United States and began grooming herself in the art of fashion design under her grandmother, who was a fashion designer herself. In no time, Lola had caught the passion for the craft, and she soon began to build her career therein. Currently, despite being a Nigerian, she is a very popular and influential in the American fashion industry, and Nigerians from all corners of the globe regularly patronize her.
6. Lanre DaSilva
Lanre DaSilva is the brains behind the popular clothing brand, Eponymous. She is known for her ability to manipulate fabrics and colours to make classic designs and attires. She makes day and evening wears, gowns and corporate outfits. She is also well-known outside Nigeria.
7. Abiodun Folashade Tokunbo
If there is any one fashion designer who is known for regularly making attires for celebrities and other top professionals all over the country, then it is Abiodun Folashade Tokunbo. She is the founder and CEO of House of Luminee, and she regularly designs clothes for Nollywood acts. Her past and present clientele includes Mercy Aigbe, Iyabo Ojo, and a few others.
8. Kunbi Oyelese
Kunbi Oyelese is the founder and creative director of popular fashion brand, ‘April by Kunbi’. Kunbi had extensive fashion education at the prestigious Fashion Institute of Technology, New York, USA, after which she started her fashion line. She is expert at making gowns for all occasions, but she is very good at making bridal gowns. She too has made wears for top celebrities in the past, like Tiwa Savage, Sheyi Shay, and former Miss World, Agbani Darego.
9. Toju Foyeh
Toju Foyeh ranks amongst the most unique female fashion designers in Nigeria. Like many others on this list, she styles clothes for top celebrities and high-class professionals. She too has made outfits for the likes of Tiwa Savage, Toke Makinwa, and many others. Her most high-profile job till date was with Nollywood superstar, Adesua Etomi. Toju designed Adesua Etomi’s breath-taking outfit for her traditional wedding, and ever since then, the plaudits have not stopped rolling in.
10. Kathy Anthony
Kathy Anthony is one fashion designer who helped to revolutionize the use of African prints today. Her designs tell of her innovativeness, and her works have also gained widespread recognition. She too, has made designs for top celebrities in Nigeria.