Saturday, September 10, 2022
Nigerian designers shone the brightest at this year’s edition of Global Fashion Awards held at the end of New York Fashion Week. Five Nigerians went away with an award each – with Toju Foyeh winning the Designer of the Year award.
The Okunoren Twins won the Most Visible Brand on Stage award. Taiwo and Kehinde Okunoren’s brand have for many years been a household name in Nigeria and beyond. But for low publicity that affect Nigerian brands, many argue that their brand would have become one of world’s top 10 brands long before now. Their clients include celebrities, country leaders and top business executives. Among them are the Nigerian, Kenyan, and Sierra Leonean presidents; Korede Bello, Denzel Washington; and Tony Elumelu.
The Best Makeup Designer award category was won by House of Tara. The Africa’s leading makeup brand which is fast becoming a major competitor in Europe and America, beat brands such as L’Oreal, Avon and Lancôme to the number one position. It is owned by one of Nigeria’s foremost leaders in business and life coaching, Tara Durotoye. As teasingly remarked by his friends, Fela Durotoye, a renowned motivational speaker, is indeed fortunate to be married to Tara.
The award for the Most Stylish Designer went to Segun Moat. He is perhaps the most talked about of the winners as it was his very first participation at an event as huge as this. He was the underdog. No one would however dispute the merit of his emegence as his collection was nothing short of “impeccable in style.”
According to the designer, “Style is simply your interpretation of life. Life is fun, beautiful, kind, funny, excellent, empathetic, classy and sexy. I have that view and I replicate it in my works. It’s that simple,” enthused the all smiling, happy and classy designer.
The Best Model award was won by Seun Bolaji, one of Okunoren Twins’ models. His body, carriage and smile were just perfect for each of the costume he stepped out with per time.
And the grand prize of the event – Designer of the Year award - was won by our very own Toju Foyeh. The brand’s debut collection was officially launched in 2011 and it has since taken the fashion industry (local and international) by storm. Toju Foyeh’s evening dress with touches of ankara fabric had the highest percentage of all orders made at the event.
When asked about the values responsible for her success, Toluwaloju Olowofoyeku, the Creative Director and owner of Toju Foyeh, said “Dedication, positive mindset, excellence and integrity are key. It’s good to use ones creative mind, but marrying that with feedbacks is equally important for a good result.”
Bonheur Chanel, a fashion icon who was also at the event said, “African brands – most especially from Nigeria - have very unique ways of creating concepts from a wide range of cultures because of their exposure to many cultures, and of course the creativity of Nigerians. I saw this coming. I’m not surprised.”
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