#LLA100Women2023: Fashion Moguls on The 2023 100 Most Inspiring Women in Nigeria List!

Adebola Adefila 

She is the CEO of Ire Dire, a premium fashion brand specialising in custom Adire attire for high-profile women, with clientele across Nigeria and the globe. She is a renowned manufacturer, businesswoman, speaker, and author with over 20 years of experience. For over a decade, she served as the Chief Operating Officer of Banrut Rolls Nigeria Ltd. A family business she co-founded and Nigeria’s second-largest tissue manufacturer in Nigeria with product brands visibly represented in all 36 States of Nigeria and in some West African countries. Today, In the past 5 years, she’s coached and mentored thousands of entrepreneurs, and manufacturers across Nigeria and Africa, helping them to make sense of their manufacturing business through her signature program “The Profitable Manufacturer”, her book PROFIT and other programmes showing manufacturers how to navigate the business terrain to ensure they are profitable. She knows, first-hand, what it is like to be burdened with the day-to-day running of your business operations while dealing with suppliers, vendors, Government policies and unpredictable economic situations. She has a B.Sc in Business Administration, an MBA and Entrepreneurial Management Certification. She is a high-sought after thought leader and speaker at events and who has been featured on Channels TV, Arise TV, Silverbird TV, Guardian newspaper, and Bank of Industry-initiated programs. She was also on the Y-Naija 2017 power list, Business category, Richer Woman’s list of 100 Most Impactful Women, 2022 among others.


Bimbo Ajadi

She is the Founder of Traditions by Bimms, known as Bimms 24 on social media. An Aso-oke and beads merchant, Bimbo has carved a niche in producing show-stopping pieces, especially for brides. She’s the one-stop destination for bedazzled aso-oke pieces in Nigeria. She is definitely a great Aso-Oke merchant in Nigeria. Her Aso-Oke is unique, classy and timeless, especially the bedazzled Aso-Oke which is a mix of so many accessories.


Bisola Adeniyi

She is the Founder/CEO of Lady Biba, a made in Nigeria multi award winning women’s ready to wear clothing brand that caters to the Modern Corporate woman. Her love for fashion and a desire to see an off the rack indigenous brand mixed with a strong passion for women empowerment gave rise to the birthing of the brand in 2013. The Economist turned fashion designer has made a name for herself in the fashion industry. In 2014, Bisola won the Fashion Business Challenge award amongst others. She speaks on how she surmounted challenges in the fashion industry, vis-à-vis her resilience in carving a niche for her brand against all odds.


Chito Grace Mark

She is the CEO, Grace’s Hats Ltd – an international award-winning, Lagos based millinery business known for its creativity and brilliance in designing “one of a kind” hats. Chito Mark is a leading Milliner in Nigeria. She is also one of the pioneers in the industry, and has created custom-made hats for several distinguished clients including Michelle Obama and Florence Ita-Giwa. Over the years, she has shown indomitable resilience while facing several challenges, one of such being a fire that burnt down one of her stores. Chito has been in the business for over 4 decades  and is still inspiring a new generation of hat makers with her innovative designs and fashion flair.


Deola Sagoe

She is the CEO of Deola Sagoe Limited and a Nigerian born fashion designer popularly known by her design name, Deola Sagoe. She began designing in 1988 when she joined her mother’s business with a view of expanding the label’s repertoire to encompass more contemporary designs for the ever-developing, cosmopolitan high-brow society. She has continued to make use of African hand-woven materials in which she brings to life a range of distinct cultures and contemporizing almost-lost traditional African techniques through this she has quickly became an icon in her field. Deola is well known for her uncanny attention to detail, her expert handling of a diverse range of fabrics as well as her exemplary grasp of a wide range of female body types. The Sagoe designs have continued to stand out with the use of authentic African fabrics from antiquity and have continued to incorporate it into contemporary designs.

Ejiro Amos-Tafiri

She is the Founder and CEO of eponymous female-wear brand, Ejiro Amos Tafiri. Established in 2010, the Ejiro Amos Tafiri brand has a keen knack for layering, a multi-texture fusion of fabrics and embellishments reminiscent of African royalty while keeping elegance, complex simplicity and fluidity as the watchword. The brand seeks to challenge and push what is inherently traditional to mainstream fashion through innovative applications of fabric, modern cuts, and drapery technique while celebrating feminine curves.
Ejiro has participated in several exhibitions and fashion shows such as Stars on the Runway and the Creative Academii reality T.V show where she emerged the winner in the Fashion category. Ejiro is passionate about the proper education of  the  upcoming fashion professionals  in  Nigeria.  She  is  alumnae  of the  US.  Consulate s  Academy  for Women Entrepreneurs, Claire Blair Foundations Road  to growth  training for Women   2017, regional winner for the Federal Government Youth Enterprise with Innovation in Nigeria (YOUWIN) grant in October 2014


Folake Coker

She is the CEO of Tiffany Amber label, a brand that has been  revolutionizing the way women see themselves, and fashion for nearly three decades. Her timeless, feminine and floaty pieces are considered fashion must-haves.
After her education in Switzerland and the United Kingdom, Folake earned a postgraduate degree in petroleum law and returned to Nigeria to pursue her fashion interests. Her fashion brand, “Tiffany Amber” was launched in Lagos in 1998. The brand has four stand alone stores and boutiques in Lagos and Abuja. Recently she launched a first-of-its-kind experiential flagship store, The Tiffany Amber Gardens in Lagos, setting a standard for luxury fashion retail in the country. Alongside this was the Tiffany Amber Heritage collection presentation, with each piece reminding guests why the brand has over time, become a prolific success.She has staged several fashion shows in Africa, Europe and the United States.

Huda Fadoul Abacha

She is the Creative Director of Huddaya Bridal Emporium, a leading Bridal Couture company, her eye for detail and ability to create bespoke wedding dresses and exquisite luxury pieces is what sets Huda apart from the crowd. Huda has created dresses for several high profile clients that have left fashion lovers speechless and breathless. She’s also one of the prominent female entrepreneurs in the Northern part of the country creating value. Her designs were featured in  the just concluded 20th edition of the Arise Fashion Week & Jazz Festival, which took place in Lagos , Nigeria.


Jadesola Rawa

She is the Founder and Creative director of the ready- to- wear Afrocentric fashion brand, Melia by Jade. Melia By Jade is a clothing brand that uses Adire, Tie & Dye and Kampala, Batik to design contemporary outfits such as shorts, jackets, playsuits, etc for the modern-day woman. In a short period of time, she has been able to not only carve a niche for herself but become a household name.
Jade has successfully made fashion that cuts across all social status and also gives a percentage of her sales to organizations that look after women with breast cancer, and that’s what makes her stand out.


Keneke Daisy Wagbatsoma

She is the Founder of Jayke Closet, a Lagos and Warri-based fashion design hub that she launched in 2014. With an innate talent for creating voguish African-print dresses, her goal is to expand till a Jayke design is in every woman’s closet in Nigeria. She has trained many young female fashion designers, enabling them in launching their own fashion businesses, and has continued to create unique designs for women of various sizes. We also love how she infuses humor into her playful reels on her personal IG handle.

Kunbi Oyelese

She is the Creative Director of female apparel brand, April by Kunbi. You’ve definitely seen her dresses on several notable women in Nigeria. Her ingenious designs have been featured on many runways and notable fashion shows. Kunbi was one of the judges of the Fayrouz L’Original fashion competition alongside Mai Atafo and others. In 2021, Kunbi announced a strategic relaunching of her brand which she renamed, April by Kunbi Lifestyle. The relaunch included her ready-to-wear line, KUNBÌ LAGOS, a multifunctional and sustainable luxury collection set to cater to all fashion conscious individuals.

Lisa Folawiyo

She is the Founder and Creative director of eponymous fashion label, Jewel by Lisa. The Lisa Folawiyo brand has shown collections on international platforms in Lagos, Johannesburg, London, Paris, Milan and New York, as well as been featured in publications such as international editions of Vogue, The New York Times, Harper’s Bazaar and Elle. The brand counts with various diffusion lines including The J Label and Pretty Precious. The brand is stocked at MatchesFashion, Moda Operandi, Temple Muse, Shop McMullen, Industrie Africa and Aby Concept. Lisa’s  brand has captivated celebrities — Lupita Nyongo and Solange Knowles— from Lagos to Cape Town, London, Paris, New York and Hollywood. Despite several moments of doubt, Lisa Folawiyo chose fearlessness and left her job as a lawyer to pursue a career in fashion


Nike Ogunlesi

She is the Founder of Ruff ‘n’ Tumble, a children’s clothing line in Nigeria. From a tiny shop with her and her mother as the main staff, Nike turned Ruff ‘n’ Tumble into an instantly recognizable, international brand. She has built a reputation for being one of the best manufacturers of children’s clothing from Nigeria. She studied the Nigerian local market for children’s ready made clothes and discovered that children’s clothing was either poorly made or imported and extremely expensive. She saw an opportunity and founded Ruff ‘n’ Tumble. Today, Nike has grown her clothing line into a national brand that is highly respected and recognised on the instant. Ruff ‘n’ Tumble presently operates a warehouse, a factory and has many retail outlets in major cities in Nigeria –Lagos, Port Harcourt, Ibadan, Kano, Ilorin, Abuja– as well as several distributors around the West African Coast.


Nkechi Harry Ngonadi

She is the Founder of NHN Couture, a Nigerian women’s wear fashion brand. According to her, “NHN Couture is an inspiration from God and this is rooted in our vision and mission statement –‘Bringing decency back to church first and the society at large, covered yet sexy, fabulous and simply classy.” She is passionate about inspiring and encouraging women to be their best and more importantly, to embrace a Godly womanhood. Nkechi is also the author of the War room prayer journal and she has a platform called ‘Mentorship with NHH’ where she mentors ladies in the way of God. On her Instagram, she shares inspiration, wisdom and loads of fun moments to her community.


Ogwa Iweze

She is the Co-Founder and Creative Director of Dzyn Couture, A Women’s Clothing brand in its 15th year. Aside from running this successful brand, Ogwa founded Runway Abuja which has held the biggest fashion shows in Abuja with a track record of providing an international standard fashion show for new, existing and well-established fashion labels. Ogwa also  founded a Fashion Strategy Class called Fashion for Profit, the idea behind Fashion for Profit is to change the narrative regarding Fashion businesses not being financially viable in Nigeria. ​A favorite feature of the Lagos Fashion and Design Week, Dzyn Couture is constantly setting new standards in Fashion, Retail and Business. Ogwah continues to facilitate young and successful female entrepreneurship in Abuja through training and mentorship sessions.


Ojoma Idegwu

She is the CEO of Dear Curves. She experienced a “cultural shock” when she moved to the UK from Abuja, Nigeria over a decade ago and realized that plus size women in general were heavily marginalized, and that  shopping as a plus-size woman was a nightmare. This led her to birth the brand “Dear Curves” where she relieves other women of that challenge with her fashion brand for plus-size women. She recently launched her capsule collection, Nojima, a luxurious and minimalistic ready-to-wear line that doubles down on the brand’s promise of size inclusivity and sustainability.

Sandra Tubobereni

She is the creative Director of TUBO – an emerging Nigerian designer, best known for her creativity in redesigning the traditional African bridal outfits, wedding dresses and chic prêt-à-porter fashion clothing. As an MBA student, she interned at Ecoluxe Fashion, London, a U.K. Based eco-fashion exhibition and promotion company where she helped take advantage of the 230,000 clicks on the company’s website to create an online boutique in order to sell the company’s ethical products. Her ready-to-wear line, TuboRTW has become a staple in the closets of celebrities. In 2022, she held her premier impact session ‘Impact Day with Tubo’, where she hosted 100 fashion entrepreneurs in an educative and interactive event.

Sophia Ike-Onu

She is the founder and CEO of the5kshop.com; an online retail store, stocking fashion and home solutions all under the price cap of 5000 Naira. With a diverse skill set, Sophia is also a social media strategist and an architect. According to her: “The5kShop was created to provide a safe and convenient way for Africans to shop quality fashion items at the BEST possible price.” A serial entrepreneur of sorts, Sophia is also the Co-Founder of DRYV.Me, a tech-enabled automobile service provider.  Not resting on her oars, in 2016, Sophia won the British Council Enterprise Challenge, where she got the unique opportunity to be coached and mentored by Sir Richard Branson.


Victoria James

 She is an award-winning fashion designer, Founder and Creative genius of the VeeKee James Fashion brand. With sheer talent, business acumen, strategic marketing, and dedication, Victoria ‘Veekee’ has become the fastest-rising Nigerian fashion designer. Coming from humble beginnings in Lagos, she dropped out of bagging a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Uyo to focus on her fashion business, which she has built into the Luxury fashion behemoth that it is today. Some of her clients include Mercy Chinwo , Chioma Ikoku, and Osas Ighodaro.

View the full list of the 100 Most Inspiring Women In Nigeria 2023 here.

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