Designer Adedoyin Okuleye from Afrispec. Image supplied.
Adedoyin Okuleye is the designer and founder of colourful label Afrispec which he created in 2009. Adedoyin grew up in Nigeria and lived in the UAE, Europe and Asia before moving to New Zealand. He likes to create vibrant clothing that reflects his West African heritage and his take on retro-inspired fashion. Afrispec will debut at New Zealand Fashion Week 2019 in a group show with other designers of African heritage which is an exciting first for NZFW.
We caught up with Adedoyin to find out more about his brand, what inspires him and what you would never catch him wearing!
Tell us about your latest collection?
My new eclectic unisex Pre-Afrispec 19 collection is a bright and colourful mix of unisex clothing suitable for any occasion. The range this season is infused with harlequin ethnic fabrics, a mix of 100% cotton, ankara, sequins, lace, chiffon, silk, swiss voile lace and satin. A shared love for casual elegance is the aim of my collection.
What made you become a designer?
I became a designer when I realised I needed to follow my passion for design, and wanted to share the beautiful colours of my Nigerian heritage.
What inspires you?
I get inspiration from my mother’s style and elegance, I love colours and vintage looks, combined with creativity and celebrating diverse body shapes and styles.
Models wearing some of Afrispec’s latest pieces.
Describe your personal style and how it influences your designs?
To this day Afrispec is a fashion house creating fun, classy urban couture styles that give you sophisticated workplace looks and present you as on-trend when out and about enjoying life.
What is your all-time favourite purchase?
My favourite purchase is blue velvet years ago from Zara in Dubai. I have seen then created more blue velvet for myself.
What wardrobe item should everyone invest in?
Haute Couture dress jacket and nice dress shoes.
Do you have a style rule you always obey?
I always want my colours to complement my styles.
Adedoyin (centre left), models and friends of the brand wearing some of Afrispec’s latest pieces.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
My highlight is to plan and develop ranges, work with others in the designs teams, such as buyers and forecasters, to develop products to meet a brief and buyers standards. I love to brighten up peoples lives with fashion and colour.
What can’t you live without?
I can’t live without passion.
Finish this sentence – You would never catch me wearing…