She has been in the industry for 11 years. Damilola Olurotimi of HoD Apparels in this interview with Efosa Taiwo speaks about doing fashion business in Ikorodu.
Tell us about your brand.
After my West African School Certificate Examination (WASCE) in 2010, I was attending the Joint Admission Matriculation Board (JAMB) tutorials. Of course, writing JAMB and passing, but no admission, I decided to learn tailoring from a tailor in our neighborhood. Well, the interest didn’t just come, I grew up seeing my mom sew and we had a sewing machine in the house. My mom happened to have learnt tailoring also in her youthful days, but she didn’t like it as a profession. So she only made our clothes. So that was where the interest came from. I learnt tailoring at first in 2011. Afterwards, when admission wasn’t coming to study Medicine like I always desired as a child, I decided to study Fashion Designing as a course in YABATECH and that same year, I got admission to study it, and since then till date, I’m still in the business. My brand’s name is House of Damsel Apparels (HoD Apparels). We make unisex ready to wear outfits, natives, casuals and evenings.
What is the experience like being a fashion designer in Ikorodu?
It’s been good. Ikorodu people party a lot even my friends outside Ikorodu envy me because I always have work to do. And that is what makes this business interesting.
For challenges, there are no much though. It is just that in this area they don’t pay well, and that’s because there are several other tailors around that are ready to make it for them at lower prices. Of course, what we offer is not the same. Tailors are different from fashion designers by what they deliver. So I try as much as possible to explain to them the difference and why I can’t take such amounts like others do. And some customers understand that and value it.
Have you at any point in time faced any discouragement?
I don’t think so. My passion for designing is way beyond giving up. I have aspirations to grow bigger and better.
What are the three things being a Fashion Designer has taught you?
No one is an island of knowledge when it comes to fashion. You have to keep learning as a designer. Fashion evolves every single day.
Then, second, patience is key. You’d face different kinds of customers, you just have to learn to understand each of them. Then lastly, I’ve also learnt to choose a niche. It’s almost impossible to do all aspects of fashion.
What has been your motivating factor as a fashion designer?
My motivating factor as a designer is that I have a vision to grow bigger, and also to be known globally. And I’m working towards that.
What stands you out as a Fashion Designer amongst others?
What stands me out is that I offer and deliver the best as much as I can.
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