For every fashion designer, creativity is key. Your level of creativity as a designer is one of the things that keeps clients coming back to your brand for more.
Creativity means different things to different people, but it ultimately means bringing to reality new ideas, dreams and imaginations.
This week, we spoke with two fashion entrepreneurs on how they keep their creativity levels up and keep soaring on without burning out.
Meet Our Designers and Their Brands
Olufunke Afolabi is a fashion designer, creative consultant and the creative director of Elpis Megalio. Elpis Megalio is a luxury fashion brand that specialises in bespoke and ready to wear services. It also includes a diffusion affordable brand called Olufunke Lagos. Celebrities like Nse Ikpe-Etim and Oreka Godis have been spotted in Elpis Megalio outfits.
For her, creativity means making magic with the resources available. Putting this magic into their outfits, as a fashion brand, involves making clothes that tell stories. Every outfit they make always includes hand work – hand stitching, beading – and luxurious fabric.
Temitope Ogundolapo is the Founder and Creative Director of Kieva Desuwa. Kieva Desuwa is a footwear brand that specialises in providing footwear for individuals who want comfortable shoes that meet their personal style and preference through an interactive process. They also provide bespoke, repair and revamp services.
Creativity to her is adding her own twist to things to create something new or unique. In merging creativity with her footwear, she makes sure every shoe they design is different and unique.
Tips on Keeping Creativity Fresh
From our interview with them, here are the points they shared with us:
1. Always make time for the things you enjoy doing:
For both Olufunke and Temitope, making out time for the things they love and enjoy doing plays a huge role in keeping creativity alive in their brands.
I make out time daily for things that I love doing like, travelling, music, reading, watching interesting things, art etc to keep my creativity fresh at all times – Olufunke Afolabi.
As a designer, don’t be afraid to do things you enjoy when you feel low on creativity. Get up and do whatever makes you happy and you’ll find that creativity will come much easier to you when you’re happy.
2. Research and study content:
Personal development is important for any individual to grow. Being open to learning goes a long way in determining how dynamic and fresh your creations turn out to be. Research on your field of expertise and study content on even things that might not be so related to your field.
3. Use the time you have wisely:
For many, this lockdown has been a tiring and frustrating time but such isn’t the case with Olufunke and Temitope. They have both learnt to use the time they have wisely to come up with new designs for their brand.
I have time to be creative at my own pace without deadlines. This lockdown has been beneficial because I have zero administrative work to do so that’s 100% creative time for me – Olufunke Afolabi.
4. It’s OK to look for inspiration in unconventional places:
Inspiration can come from the most unconventional of places at times. Sometimes when inspiration isn’t coming from the places you usually find it in, look for it in other places.
I try to get inspiration from different things, say clothes, bags and even architecture and furniture. By incorporating my interpretation of these designs, that are not close at all to footwear, my designs come out with a different twist to them – Temitope Ogundolapo.
Never rule out anything or anybody as a source of inspiration for your creative process.
5. Always be you:
Your personal style and touch as a designer is what makes your brand unique and stand out. The fact that other people are doing something doesn’t mean you have to do it too. Find out what works for your brand and be unapologetic about incorporating in your designs.
In closing, Olufunke Afolabi said,
“Don’t force it, dance to the beat of your drum. Do your thing even if no one understands, they will get it eventually.”
And Temitope Ogundolapo said,
“I’ll say try to look for inspiration outside your field of interest, do things you love and unplug when you need to.”
Team work makes the dream work.
Also, always remember that hardwork, professionalism and team work are key in any business.