Lagos Fashion Week is back this year with a lineup of amazing designers from around the African continent showcasing their Spring/Summer 2022 collections.
Among these, the Sunlight brand has put together a collective with special designs from their Fashion Focus 2020 winners. The three designers; Adesola Falomo, Itunu Bamidele, Victoria Anosike and bring together their unique individual aesthetic and skill for a special Sunlight runway show on Day 3 of physical shows. This initiative aims to empower female entrepreneurs in the fashion industry by giving them grants and promoting the amazing work they do across platforms.
Ahead of the show, BellaNaija Style caught up with Itunu Bamidele the Creative Director of Africcana. She took us through her creative process and gave a sneak peek of the pieces we will be seeing in the Sunlight collection.
BNS: Tell us about your journey so far
Itunu: My blossoming career started as a young girl helping my sister sew in the city of Epe until I got into the university, where I finally decided to respond to demands the business way. I funded my school years through the orders I got and dressed in my design brand all through school years to date.
I have built an A-list brand that has graced theater stages, award ceremonies, and celebrity engagements. In 2017, she took up the role of costume designer and makeup manager for BAP Productions at TERRA KULTURE creating costumes for musicals such as Fela and the Kalakuta Queens (staged at Terra Kulture, Cairo, and Pretoria), Moremi the musical, and many more. My brand was also recently discovered and featured on CNN World News, CNN Africa, and over 200bloggers Pages around the world for her daring designs and meticulous execution.
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BNS: Tell us about the journey so far; this collaboration, working with other designers and Sunlight
Itunu: I cannot thank God enough for this Sunlight opportunity, I thought it was just the grant but the open doors involved is actually more. As a full-time custom-made designer, being able to diversify my business by producing a ready-to-wear collection is indeed a good push I needed; all thanks to Sunlight. Sunlight is a light unto my path!
BNS: What are some of your expectations for today’s show?
Itunu: Showing on the LFW is yet another door of great opportunities for my business; I believe it will give some sort of visibility for business growth and increase.
BNS: Tell us a bit about what we will be seeing on the runway, the inspiration, and more
Itunu: Africcana will be showing five Gbajúmò designs inspired by cultural heritage. I am a well-cultured lady and I naturally find myself having great love for African fabrics especially the Àdìre, ogidi aláró, Sóyán, and the likes.
My five designs were named after my mother’s name and my nicknames. Ìyálòde, Adéìté, Omolaso, Ewà and Túraká. Ìyálòdeis my favorite design from the Gbajúmò collections, it’s a skirt and blazers made from the original native àdìre, cotton cord lace and ostrich feathers for every lover of Yoruba culture.
Túraká is my second best; a mini backless dress made from self-made àdìre crepe for my 21st century pretty ladies that are absolutely in love with àdìre yet maintained their scandalous styles.