Meet The Founder Of Asologe Fashion House
One part of my job I love the most, is being able to connect with amazing entrepreneurs and founders of unique, Afrocentric and indigenous brands. It is truly an honor to be able to hear their stories directly from them, as they take you through the journey of why they started, how they started, and how far they have come.
Today’s interview feature is about an amazing young lady, who founded the Asologe Fashion House. AFH produces uniquely designed hand-dyes Adire fabrics that give your outfit a contemporary edge. Read our interesting conversation below. I know you will enjoy it.
- Please introduce yourself and your background
HI…… My name is Bibire Fawehinmi, from the famous “Fawehinmi” family in Ondo town of Ondo west local government, Ondo state. Born into a family of a High court judge and an entrepreneur (fabric seller) with 2 siblings; an elder sister and a younger brother.
Lived all my childhood and teen years in Ondo with my parents. I studied Mathematics Education in the prestigious Obafemi Awolowo University, ile-ife in Osun state where I finished with an upper class.
- Tell us about your work. How did Asologe Fashion House start?
I am a full time African print manufacturer and seller. Asologe Fashion House is a brand name I coined from my love for fabrics in general, maybe because I was born into it. I had always dreamed of owning one of the most luxurious fabric stores. Asologe which means ‘CLOTH IS FASHION’ simply explains itself.
- How did you come about the name and what does it mean?
I love to call my business, Asologe, for a short………asides my love for prints, I got to know more about Adire while in camp in 2017 in Akwa Ibom during the one-week SAED training (smiles). My very first teacher goes by the name Pst Abiodun, then after the camp, I redeployed to Lagos but that didn’t stop me from learning more, I had a one month training with my teacher via WhatsApp. YouTube too was(is) a great teacher too.
- What is your niche and how did you know it was a market to get into?
With this little knowledge from my boss, I started and I can boldly say that sustained me for more than 8months in the business. Later, I would go through some pages on Instagram and keep wondering how they dyed a particular design, then i knew I was obsolete and I needed new (fresh) knowledge and that was when I furthered and had another one month training with my boss 2 at Surulere, here in Lagos state.
- Where do you get the inspiration for your products?
For me, I get my inspiration from some kind of fabric I see around (Ankara) and I’m always like, we can replicate something like this on our Adire and that’s it.
- Can you remember one of the first products you made? What makes it memorable?
My very first client asides (families and friends) was (is) a Nigerian in the London. He purchased 100yards of Adire, which now, I will say are very basic Adire (smiles) and he paid me 70% before I started the work. Upon completion, the remaining was paid before I took to NAAN at ikeja. For me, that was a great way to start and part of what keeps me going.
- What are some of the challenges you face in your business?
Hmmm, challenges though, for me, the first will be sourcing for fabric and getting them at the needed time. Sudden increase in amount of dyes and chemicals. Also, man-power, because the higher you go, the more hands needed, which I will say are not so willing and ready…………….
- Do you have any regrets venturing into this line of business?
But still, I don’t have any regrets venturing into this business at. All………
- What is your most popular product?
Hmmmm, most popular product, I can’t say because all product has its season and time. January, we might have more sales from Adire lace……. Next month might just be hundreds of scarfs………
- What are some of your short term and long term goals, both in your business and life in general?
I believe all dreams are valid and I see Asologe becoming a household business name with proper and operational manufacturing systems in play. I just don’t want to have dyeing pit. I want to have a manufacturing plant where we can manufacture our dyes and chemicals, workers that are ready and totally in sync with the company’s vision.
- What would people be surprised to learn about you?
I cherish family so much and for that, one of my goal is to keep my family as the priority above all.
- What profession would you be in if you weren’t in the Fashion industry?
I am a big lover and die-hard fan of bread (smiles)…….and I hope to have a mini bakery someday. For profession, I can’t think of any really……… but maybe an investment banker.
- If you could give one piece of advice to anyone who wants to start their own business in your industry, what would it be?
My first advice will be, ensure you have an extra stream of income. Be ready to meet an entirely new people. Be patient.