With Sukurat Adelodun
It’s the beginning of a New Year, resolutions flying here and there, how prepared are you for 2019? Your businesses, family, personal goals and of course how do you intend to make it all work together for good.
You are welcome to the maiden edition of our column “Today’s Arewaobirin with Sukurat Adelodun”. Arewaobirin promotes and celebrate that special woman out there doing great exploits, making impacts and not giving up against all odds, rather making the best of every situation and opportunities around them.
We will be featuring women from diverse professions and backgrounds, where we talk about their profession, passion, success and challenges and how they have fared.
Our maiden edition will be focusing on an Ilorin based Fashion Designer, Hajia Rafiat Temitayo Akerele, the CEO Triple T Clothiers. She’s a hardworking kickass mum that loves walking her talks.
What inspired you to start Triple T Clothiers?
Triple T clothiers started initially as a hobby. I love to make craft and I had basic training from home economics from primary and secondary School. So after my NYSC I decided to enroll in a fashion school for professional training and Triple T clothiers was birthed.
What does Triple T Stand for?
T in triple T stands for the initial of my name and that of my kids/siblings. Temi, Tola and Tomiwa.
Triple T Clothiers is not the first Fashion Designer brand in Nigeria, what distinct you from others?
We make bespoke dresses and our one big pointer is we don’t disappoint our clients we always deliver on time as promised. We are also into ready-to-wear dresses for kids both male and female in both African and English fabrics and make your dream wedding gowns.
You are a brand based in Ilorin, Kwara State, how does your delivery work or do you focus on just Kwara alone?
I am not focused on Kwara State alone. I deliver nationwide with a token charge for delivery especially our ready to wear dresses for kids.
What was the most challenging aspect of building your name and company?
Challenges faced are capital to expand, most Nigerians especially Kwarans prefer quantity to quality so most time they don’t value the quality of our dresses or price it cheap.
What types of materials or fabrics do you design and are there particular reasons for this?
I especially love to work with Ankara, Guinea because they are beautiful, give you unique and special finishing and they are our own. I also use lace, satin, chiffon and others.
How do you reach your target audience?
Mostly through social media (Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp), some through referrals.
What are your production decisions based on and how do you keep on with trends in the fashion Industry?
What is in vogue, what will suit the particular client and sometimes client request.
Your best selling designs are?
Do you major on unisex designs or just females?
We learnt you so have a kiddies line, tell us about it?
The idea for my kiddies line was borne from compliments I get when people see my kids outfits at events, then I started thinking of how many of us mostly dress our kids in English outfits, jeans and all. So triple T clothier children ready to wear came to being.
Who should patronise you and why?
Everyone, mothers, fathers, Uncles or aunties, bride to be, for gifts to your kids, nephews and nieces on their birthday, special occasions or even everyday dress, we make lovely wedding gowns and are affordable while giving you quality.
As an Arewaobirin, how do you cope with managing the home front and your business, without any suffering?
Alhamdulillah though it can be tasking and tiring at times but when you have a husband that supports and understands you things are easier. He mostly helps with house chores when I am busy especially during festive season when we are really busy. I wake up early, things that can be done at night before I sleep gets done like preparing the kids uniform, bags and all. I also make sure I plan ahead and don’t waste time on unnecessary things. Time wasted can never be regained.
What are you plans for the future?
My plans for the future is to see Triple T clothiers bigger than it is today, my kiddies cloth line should go worldwide like Nike and Adidas God’s willing.
What advice would you give to other women, looking to get other streams of income?
Be strong because the journey isn’t an easy one, consistency, hardwork and honesty pays at the long run and always put God first.
What’s the procedure or requirements to train with you as an apprentice and what is the duration?
To train with us we ask for a minimum of primary school certificate because we like our trainees to be literate so they can catch up easily, buy our form and be ready to learn and work because our training is practical based. We have a minimum of 6 months for training.
When you are not working, what do you do?
I volunteer to teach in a primary school around my area basic home makers skills, I love reading novel and also in a charity group to contribute my little quota to the society.