APiF: Please introduce your business and your designs.
Ade Yusuf: Pearl 1130 is a fashion and style label which personifies sophistication, class and timeless elegance – these attributes are what summarizes the Pearl 1130 woman. Our designs are a fusion of vintage vibe and modern fashion design with an Afro twist.
APiF: How does your heritage influence your designs?
Ade: My designs are more or less an interpretation of my style, hence my colorful heritage plays some role in my designs. I am in one way or another inspired by my surroundings, my culture which I tend to present in my own way.
APiF: How do u feel about the current trend regarding all things “African”?
Ade: I feel elated. It is awesome to look around and to see all these Africa-inspired designs. Gone are the days when we were not so proud of what rightly belongs to us. This trend is so here to stay and I am privileged to rock it.
APiF: What inspires u?
Ade: I am inspired by almost everything from my moods to magazines to my surroundings to people to fabrics et al. I can be inspired by what a pepper seller has on, you never can tell what catches your fancy.
APiF: Fashion Finds: What is your favorite piece in your closet or of your collection and why?
Ade: I have got loads of favorite pieces, almost every item in my closet/collection has a space in my heart but for the sake of this interview I will pick an item from my first major collection (Belle De Jour). The Krimy lace dress, I absolutely adore this dress because it is simple and brings out the chic appeal in the wearer.
APiF: How do you market your designs and how do you make them accessible to a global audience?
Ade: We make use of online hubs, magazines, our website which we update regularly and other social networks such as twitter and facebook. We have also been lucky with referrals from old customers.
APiF: Any tips for new designers/start-ups in the fashion industry?
Ade: Knowledge is key and passion for the job is major because fashion is a tough business; passion is the driving force we all need. It can be throat cutting but very beautiful. Understanding the use of social networks and publications to reach out to your target market is very important. To evolve is good, knowing your product is important and having a clear vision is a must.