Words: Aluwani Ratshiungo
Nigerian fashion designer, Lisa Folawiyo, started her multi-faceted global womenswear and accessories brand in 2005. Her collections are exclusively crafted from Ankara textiles; vibrant wax-resistant dyed fabrics with striking patterns, bold shades, and highly-detailed prints.
She recently launched her diffusion line The J Label in response to a need for stylish well designed, beautifully finished garments with a luxurious appeal using accessible fabrications at lower price points.
Though some luxury brands avoid diffusion lines altogether out of fear of watering down their brand, The J Label still maintains Lisa Folawiyo Studios’ (LFS) brand identity of confident mixing and matching of prints, impeccable cuts, and asymmetric hemlines.
LFS garments are embellished with beads, sequins and crystals all sewn by hand in local workshops in Nigeria. With The J Label however, there’s hardly any use of embellishments which makes it more affordable and thus, accessible to a wider audience.
The standout aspect of the collection is LFS’ trademark penchant for contemporary garments with bold patterns, impactful proportions, contrasting textiles and robust colours. The designer’s strong eye for tailoring and fit, creating feminine and modern silhouettes is discernible.