In a world of fashion where uniqueness and creativity reign supreme, Ganiyu Oluwafunmilayo Yewande has carved a niche for herself with Antique_Apparel. As the creative force behind the brand, she specializes in crafting exquisite handmade headpieces that beautifully complement the elegance of Noblewomen and children during special occasions. In this exclusive interview, Mrs. Ganiyu Oluwafunmilayo Yewande, also known as the DIY Queen, shares her journey as an entrepreneur in the fashion industry, the inspiration behind Antique_Apparel, and the secret to her success in creating captivating and one-of-a-kind headpieces.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your journey as an entrepreneur in the fashion industry?
I’m Mrs. Ganiyu Oluwafunmilayo Yewande, and I graduated in Philosophy in 2014. I ventured into the business of catering to brides and queens of owanbe events. One day, while shipping my goods, I was inspired by a hairvine and thought to myself, ‘I can do this too.’ That’s when I delved into making my own handmade headpieces and accessories, targeting brides, kids, and those attending owanbe celebrations.
What inspired you to start Antique_Apparel and specialize in creating handmade headpieces for Noblewomen?
I have always been passionate about events, and I am a DIY enthusiast. The joy I receive from my customers keeps me going, which is why I’m still in this business. I love the art of creation and the uniqueness it brings.
Could you describe the process behind creating your handmade headpieces? What materials do you use, and what makes them unique?
Every piece I create is unique and specially made for each individual. There’s a story behind every headpiece, which makes them stand out and feel special. We use a variety of materials, including claw stones, beads, shells, flowers, wires, and more, to ensure the headpieces are exquisite and elegant.
How do you ensure that the headpieces you create perfectly fit the women and children wearing them for special occasions?
Before starting any project, we engage the client in detailed discussions about their dress, color preferences, the event’s theme, and the desired size. This meticulous attention to detail ensures that the headpieces are a perfect match for the occasion and the wearer.
What sets Antique_Apparel apart from other headpiece designers in the market? How do you differentiate your brand and products?
My brand stands out due to its strong branding, attention to detail, and refusal to compromise on the quality of materials used. We constantly experiment with colors and adopt a robust publicity strategy to create a lasting impression on our audience.
Can you share some success stories or memorable moments from customers who have worn your headpieces for special occasions?
We’ve had the honor of working with various celebrities and clients, including Osas and her daughter for a birthday shoot, Toke Makinwa for a shoot, Mercy Johnson for a shoot, Sola Sobowale for a campaign shoot, and many more. Our headpieces have graced numerous events, and we cherish every moment of making our customers feel extraordinary.
How do you stay updated with the latest trends and styles in headpiece design? How do you incorporate them into your creations while maintaining your unique touch?
Staying updated and constantly learning is vital for my brand. I believe in upgrading my skills and knowledge. I draw inspiration from dress designs, elements from nature, and even everyday objects. This allows us to create custom-made headpieces that are truly unique.
Could you talk about any challenges you’ve faced as an entrepreneur and how you’ve overcome them?
Like every business, we’ve faced challenges, such as economic fluctuations, rising material costs, and the difficulty of finding reliable staff. However, with perseverance and a dedicated team, we have overcome these obstacles and continued to thrive.
What marketing strategies have you found most effective in promoting your brand and reaching your target audience?
Swift response, personal branding, and maintaining truthful relationships with our clients have been our most effective marketing strategies. We believe in the power of word-of-mouth and loyal customers spreading the word about our brand.
How do you manage the balance between creativity and profitability in your business?
We have implemented a software system to track finances and maintain records of our inventory and expenses. This allows us to understand our profitability while giving us the freedom to express creativity without compromising on quality.