Celebrity This week is back with a feature from an outstanding Nigerian female designer who has strived to make it in the fashion industry both in Nigeria and across the borders. Its Toju Foyeh , lawyer by profession, a fashion designer by passion.

Who is Toju Foyeh


Toju Foyeh,  full name is Toluwaloju Olowofoyeku. She is  the Creative Director and owner of the Toju Foyeh brand.

This lawyer turned designer is one of Nigerian fashion designers who has broken the barriers of gender restriction and a powerful force to reckon with in the fashion industry.

Toju Foyeh Age


Toju Foyeh was born on July 13 1989, she’s currently 28 years old at the time of this writing

Toju Foyeh Growing Up


Toju is the first child and only girl with three brothers. She describes her parents as easy to get along with but strict when they have to

According to  her ,  We did not lack, so it was interesting growing up.

Growing up, I was surrounded by designers. My parents owned a fashion house at some point and my grandmother was a fashion designer as well.

So, I was inspired by them and I decided to develop it and go into it later on.

Toju Foyeh Background


She fell in love with fashion from a very young age. That passion haunted her for a while until she decided to do something about it.

When asked what gave her inspiration to start designing?
When I was younger I used to go through my mum’s magazines. Stuff like Harpers and Queens, Tatler and Vogue and I thought fashion is something I would like to do some day. I was particularly intrigued by the creative art of high fashion and started putting my ideas on paper from the age of nine.

Due to her interest in fashion, she kicked of her clothing line in January 2008 and the desire to be at the top and perfect her skills motivated her to attend fashion school in  Milan 2009.

Toju moved back to Nigeria in 2010 and since then has made jer markls in the industry. Due to her talented designs, she received load of publicity.

Honestly, I wanted to study fashion for my first degree, but I just thought it was important to have a background in something that would eventually help my fashion business, which was why I decided to read law.

I had the choice of either studying for a degree in law or business, but I chose the former because that goes more with my personality.

Talking about support,

My parents have always been supportive because it is something they had always known I wanted to go into. They also see law as a good degree to have in running my business. I do not necessarily have to practise. – Miss Foyeh

Toju Foyeh Education


Toju Foyeh bagged her  first degree in Law at the University of Reading and obtained her LLM from the University of Manchester.

Soon after that, she attended fashion school where she  studied Fashion Design at Istituto Marangoni in Milan for a year.

She returned home to attend Law school, called to bar which made her qualified to practice Law in Nigeria.

Toju Foyeh Brand


In an interview she was asked , How she devised the name of her brand?

she said

Toju Foyeh is the abbreviation of my name which is Toluwaloju Olowofoyeku. I wanted to keep it personal.

Arriving the Nigerian fashion scene in 2012, her quick rise to the top did not go unnoticed by industry watchers and in 2012, she won the Future Awards Designer of the Year plaque.

Her spotlight really came in 2015 where she showcased in the Lagos Fashion & Design Week.

Challenges


Working in an industry that is already saturated is a big challenge, but it drives me because I know I have to go the extra mile to prove myself.

Power supply in Nigeria is not friendly. I run up a huge bill powering the generator and that itself breaks down from time to time due to prolonged usage.

What’s More About Toju


Apart from being the fashion guru, Toju loves love to bake and cook.  She’s also an Ajala,as she enjoys going on holidays.

Toju Foyeh’s Style


Style for me is a reflection of your mood and personality. I like to wear dresses because they are comfortable and you are ready to go.I like them short, slightly above the knee.- Miss Foyeh

Toju is more of a bag person than shoes.


Defending that she says,

They last longer and it is something you can pass down from generation to generation. Shoes wear out quickly and often get in bad shape. I trust Chanel for my bags.

Toju Foyeh Designs


This pace setter and goal getter has fast become one of the favorites for many celebrities, fashionistas and socialite.

Toju draws her inspiration from the likes of Valentino, Karl Lagerfeld, Ellie Saab and Deola Sagoe.

 

One word to Upcoming / Aspiring Fashion Designers

 ‘believe in yourself.’

I know that might sound clichéd but it’s the truth. I remember when I first started, even though most of my reviews were good, there were a few bad ones that hit me hard, but  because I believed in myself and what I do, I was able to overcome all the negativity.

This does not mean I ignore the negative comments; I think it’s important to always listen because I might gain something from it. I just learnt not to let it discourage me.