Monday, January 22, 2007

~BELLA NAIJA PRESENTS: TAE BY BISOLA EDUN~

Hey Everyone,
Wooot! Its Monday again...well that means back to work and school :( but it also means new possibilities and exciting opportunities...so there is a lot to smile about! :)
I am SO EXCITED about today's post because this is my first ever Bella Naija interview!
When I decided to begin doing interviews, the first person I thought of was Bisola Edun of Taé. Coincidentally, I was talking to my friend, Dammie and she suggested that I interview Bisola as well! So I just knew it was meant to be.
____________________________________________________________________________________
Bisola Edun is the Creative Director of one of Nigeria's top labels, Taé.
The Taé style can best be described as creative, fun and fresh.
Rockin' Taé will guarantee that you look absolutely stunning without looking like you are trying too hard.
Since the label was launched a few years ago, Bisola has been nominated for various awards such as the Future Awards 2005 for Entrepreneur of the Year. She has also participated in high profile fashion shows including the St. Moritz Style Selection and the Red, Bold and Jazzy fashion shows. I admire Bisola so much because despite her success, as you can probably tell from her interview, she remains very humble and bubbly.
Check out the interview and some exclusive photos from her last collection!

The Designer: Bisola Edun
Tell us about Bisola
I grew up in Lagos, the 3rd in a family of 4 kids. Went to FGGC Sagamu and then on to University of Lagos where I studied Economics. Worked for about 7 years before I decided to start Taé.

What inspired you to start Taé?
Childhood dream and a personal need. I found it impossible to shop in Nigeria because there were just no stores that you could walk into, view a wide variety of products and pick something off the shelf. So it was really frustrating for me especially as I’m on the petite side and getting my size was pretty challenging, so I thought, why not?

Taé is a very unique name, how did you come up with the name?
Actually, my partner chose it. We’d gone through a whole list of names and she came up with Taé, as a derivative of Taiwo, the first born of the Yoruba twins. Taiwo was the first to ‘Taste Life’ and is supposed to be the adventurous, mischievous and fun loving one, so it just kinda fit!

You left a promising and lucrative career in Finance for the uncertainty of the world of fashion design. How did friends and family react to this decision?
It was my family and friends’ reactions that convinced me I was doing the right thing. No one thought I was crazy, everybody encouraged me to go for it, and some people even expressed envy at my courage to go for my dreams.

What are the challenges of running your own label in Nigeria?
Where do I start? The Nigerian environment is just not supportive of small businesses; it’s hard to get decent and loyal workers, funding is a critical issue, the regulatory framework is really very fuzzy and getting information about such is just plain tedious!

Tell us about your proudest moments since launching Taé?
Every time someone calls to order more outfits because the one they wore to ‘so and so’ party stirred up such a huge reaction…… I’m proud. And I must say I get those calls QUITE often!

What is your personal style philosophy?
1) Comfort is KEY!!!! 2) It’s all about the accessories! I’m most comfortable in my jeans and I believe that with the right accessories, you can turn almost any outfit into a show stopper!

Do you have a muse or particular fashion icon that inspires you?
I love women who always manage to look effortlessly chic. I love Mrs. Nike Ogunlesi’s sense of style and there are loads of women who walk into my store and I’m like ‘how do you manage to look soooooo good, I’d never have thought of putting clothes together like that!!’ I also like the way Victoria Beckham puts her pieces together but then she always looks so contrived, not at all effortless and that totally ruins it for me!

In Nigeria, fashion designers are celebrities and are regularly featured in the media. How do you handle all this attention?
I find that it’s not as glam as it’s made out to be… I mean it’s not like I’m walking down the road and people are screaming at me and trying to tear my clothes off! Most times, no one even recognises me, which is totally cool. I’d rather everyone was raving about Taé as supposed to raving about Bisola.

You are so down-to-earth? How do you maintain this attitude despite all your success?
Ha! Trust me, my family and friends would totally slap me down to earth if I even THOUGHT of floating off for a few seconds!

You have been nominated for and won various awards, featured in many prominent fashion shows and exhibitions both internationally and locally and have a very strong clientele. What is your next move?
Ok, scratch the local and international awards thing, as well as the prominent fashion shows. Haven’t done any of those, but I do have a very strong clientele. So my next move would be to achieve all of the above and expand my product offering, starting with a more exclusive line.

What is your ultimate goal for Taé? New York Fashion Week? A store on Rodeo Drive?
Ahhhh! First Nigerian fashion business quoted on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, a Taé outlet in every major city in the world… Basically I want a company that would survive me till kingdom come.

Where can we order some fab Taé pieces?
25, Joel Ogunaike Street, GRA Ikeja, Lagos Nigeria. I’m working on being able to process orders online but that probably won’t be possible until later this year.

Do you have any advice for aspiring fashion designers?
If you’re good at it – and trust me you’ll know ‘cause your product will speak for itself – then go for it! Dig in your heels, prepare to weather the storms and just go for it! It’s not easy but it’s worth it.

Final question, it’s a very important one! What’s your favourite blog?
Hmmmmmmmm…….. would that be bella naija? ;)

Taé 2006 Collection
The clothes are modelled by Bimbo Onabowale (lookin' stunning by the way!) and shots were taken by the über-talented T.Y Bello. ENJOY!





Taé on the Runway

*no photographs from this post can be used without explicit permission*

That's it! I love all the clothes, I like the simplicity and the elegance of the clothes. I feel like I could dress them with accessories and heels for an event or dress them down with flats for a more laidback look.

Have a fab week! Pleasssse leave a comment and let us know what you think. If you have never left a comment on bellanaija, today is your day...lol! Thanks for the luv. MUAH!

56 comments:

Mona said...

Oh wow Bimbo looks fab!! Hello there!! Lovely styles and the textiles are quite nice.

guy horny said...

Chai! Mona beat me to it. thot i was going to be the first LOL. tomoro is anoda day.

Mona said...

Hahah I didn't even realise I was first shaaaa...ok just finished reading it...Thanks for the Shout out Bella....uh oh meant to put this in the other post..okay x

Funmi said...

Bimbo looks really tyte in those pics. Tae's stuff look really 'wearable'.......well done bella.

Dimples said...

LOL!!!...Ya'll fighting for 1st position…anyways ok me I’m 4th..

Anyways loving ur blog as usual Bella…keep up the good work :)

O ga o!!!…see my Onabs working and strutting her thing….u go girl…fine babe!!!...Nice one hun.
Seen some stuff by Taé and I’d have to say they are rather bunz sha….NAIJA is a FAB place to be from sha!!

Confessions of a moody crab said...

Nice!!! I would wear it cos they are so simple yet so...so....I'can't find the word but there is something abt her clothes that just draws you...

Very Fab!!

temmy tayo said...

Lovely designs and wearable too.
Tae is good!

Naijadude said...

Those are really lovely designs!...Good job

Mari said...

Nice stuff.
Did you do the interview, Bella?

angelica said...

Those designs are dope, i'v always known we've got very talented designers in naija. i can see myself in those clothes, and i also love the fact that they are wearable. u know some of our naija designers always wanna go over the top sha, and end up with unrealistic stuff.and that was an interestin interview.

angie said...

Wonderful designs. Tae is reali doing a wonderful and admirable thing.

Bimbo sure does look beautiful!!!

Naija Vixen said...

Oh wow,guud work bella,the pictures are rawking!and the pieces can actually be worn,none of those calabash ish happenin here!

Anonymous said...

Damn Bisola, no shout outs..You owe me like 10 cabin bicuits. This chic has been drawing and sketching since we were in school, often exchanging 5 cabin buscuits for a fine Art or TD( technical drawing)drawing book. I knew She was serious when in the thick of hunger she would rather exchange her cabin biscuit for a Fine Art drawing book instead of your eko meat and stew! Bisola is testament to everyone out thier who has an innate gift to pursue their dreams.
Our young Bimbo is working those Tae design. She looks so beautiful. If you are reading this Bisola you 'll have to try and guess who this is!

Anonymous said...

excuse the typos darlings ! :)

Dammie said...

Ohhhh I love the 3rd ensemble!!...Tae is very sweet and humble....I love knowing souls like this exists....coz they r really so hard to find!!!

Bimbo is/has always been gorgeous!!

Nice interview B, good job!!

ToyinE said...

Bella,
nice post as usual - I have to echo everyone by saying that Tae's stuff look so wearable and not too "couturish" cos you know some of those runway stuvvs will get you some crazy looks on the street. Bimbo looks good too! Good job, can you give us some idea of Tae's price range???

Vera Ezimora said...

Dang it, I wanna be first! Why can't I ever be first?? When do you usually update your blog cause I will sit awake if I have to. I HAVE to be first...especially since so many people r now competing 2 be first too - even Guy Horny. Imagine the likeness o!

Bella Naija,

Have I already told you I'm jealous of you? I am so jealous, u have no idea. You get 2 meet important people that do important things...but me I'm stuck with some man-stealing bloggers, lol (no offense to overwhelmed, TMinx, Teva, Cherub, Diamond...gosh, do I really need 2 go on)

These styles are fab!! I want them. God, I need 2 come 2 Nigeria..!!!

Hey, Bella, what magazine do you suggest I look @ for some current Naija styles....because a lotta times I just make styles up in my head.

Bella, can we trade lives for a week? Just a week, pls!

Gosh this comment is long...sorry. But where do I apply to be a guest blogger on Bella Naija's blog? I wanna be something on Bella Naija's blog.

*sobs*

sally04 said...

The dresses are really looking nice o! I like all the out fits.

Ms. May said...

Loving it! Look at Bimbo, the soon to be Mrs, looking stunning! I need to check out her store when next I'm in Naija. You know how tourists got to New York and London and Paris and Dubai on vacation and part of that includes shopping, it would be so nice for that to be part of the Naija travel experience. When we visit home, we always pack everything we need because you can't just walk into a store and buy a nice top or jeans without breaking the darned bank. There's def a need for stores like that in Naija. I hope Bisola's dream comes true o.

Ladybrille said...

Hi Bella,

Strong interview. It only makes sense you'd get to start doing interviews. Adds a bit more flavour to your already exciting site. The questions are also good and have a flow to them.

Keep up the good work.

Ladybrille

Icy said...

This was a super kool entry. GO on wiff ya bad self bella. I'm digging this. Great job B. looking fabulous.. you and the clothes.. RAWK ON!

Bisola Edun (Tae) said...

Thank you all for the wonderful comments. Truly encouraging and will make sure i show stuff from my new collection on this page if that's ok with bella.

Price range is 5k to 13k for tops, 8k to 17k for skirts and 9k to 20k for dresses.

ANONYMOUS WHO ARE YOU?????? YOU'VE GOT TO LET ME KNOW!!!!!

sonya said...

Congratulations on snagging an interview with Bisola of Tae. Nice looking model..Interested in the clothes they look like big gals can wear 'em too. I am so over styles that you can fit into or styles that wont fit or one that you cant wear straight off the run way!

Anonymous said...

@ Bisola..Bisco Dee!!! I'll never tell... Just buy me cabin biscuit when I come to Naija..So proud of you!! Muah!

Bisola said...

Please now. I'll buy you 5 20 cartons of cabin biscuit and throw in a carton of blueband as well.... Ok, i'll give you a signature skirt when you come to naija. just tell me abeg

low said...

SEE '2 BOGAS' (Bimbo) looking SANE..I think i remember the day coz she was scared she would be a mess, but look at u looking like a star!

Really nice interview Bella...ok ill b really shocked if i am able to post this comment. For some funny reason it always acts up when i try to leave a comment for u. Evil forces..lol

Anonymous said...

I am always proud when a saggy babe make us proud. I love your designs and the price are reasonable too. Definitely patronize you whenever I visit naija. Keep the good work and Bella Naija thanks for promoting Africa fashion and style.

yankeenaijachick said...

Na wa ooooooooooooooo, this is too much o, l love the dress one. really sexy anc cute. l can't wait for summer.

tiwalade said...

Bisola seems really cool from the interview and her designs are fab as well. Rock on!

belissima said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tatafo! said...

And it's a Saggy babe!!
Very pretty outfits, i love the price range... 5k to 13k is not bad at all. You should have a website so we can know where you are located.

suburbannaijamom said...

ok bella, i have to join the queue. i am no way a fashionista but i must say i get my daily dose of bellanaija! hmm i'll probably go thru withdrawal if u didn't put up any posts.

T said...

Tae looks so wearable. Very interested in this designer. Kudos Bisola

Anonymous said...

Go Shaggy babes! Awesome out fits..then the models sister went to shaggy too..Thats what am talking bouT..Very nice miss Bisola

TB said...

LOL @ the cabin biscuit comments ..remember those days well..Kudos Bella! And the designer is very cool too. Would love put some orders in . The price range isnt bad at all

Nilla said...

The outfits are fabulous...

Congrats on your first interview girl!!

Bluntremi said...

Beautiful designs...we should definitely talk!!
Keep up the great work Tae...

In my head and around me said...

Bella: Nice work. I did not expect anything less :)

Tae: "Ha! Trust me, my family and friends would totally slap me down to earth if I even THOUGHT of floating off for a few seconds!" I loved this answer. Good to know that you have people that keep you grounded.

I feel you on how challenging it is to do business in Nigeria. I took the enterprenurial course at fate foundation and came out ready to do my own thing, face the word, build a niche...but when I saw how rough the terrain was, I firmly held on to my 9-5.

It is encouraging to see people like you do your thing and be a success at it. I wish you the very best.

Daddy's Girl said...

Bella - fresh and interesting as always. The interview was really really good, well done. And I really like Bisola's designs. Great job!

Uzo said...

I love the designs profiled here. Very wearable and trendy. Not a bad interview as well.Well crafted questions that were not too wordy. Good job Bella

mystoriesmytestimonies said...

congrats on ur first interview
nice one...
deka

Bee said...

Awwwhhh..my Bimbo looks soo pweetty!...and the designs look FAB...JUST FAB!

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

whao.. bella.. you should be proud oh... getting me to look at Naija/traditional clothes is something nobody else has ever gotten me to do.. i usually tune out... but these are just fantastic clothes.. the designs are beautiful... whao.. if I ever ever decided to get a traditional outfit.. i'll come on here and shout you out 4sure... cos i'm almost converting.. keep it up babe..

zaiprincesa said...

Happy New Year, Bella. Great Interview, BTW! Bisola Is very very talented...one of the first young naija designers i patronized..and without regrets too..lol..I get compliments everytime i wear the skirt!...and the bimbo model is very pretty. Great Job Bella!

damsel said...

I love this collection. Very elegant and simple

Journey said...

Nice interview, i love the styles featured there, very nice

Favoured Girl said...

Congrats on your fist interview Bella! Bisola seems really cool too,and her designs are fab! What set was she in Sagamu, do you know?

bibi said...

yea her designs are very nice..and quite affordable too.

The Life of a Stranger called me said...

The designes are top notch and I can see myself wearing them. They are made to be worn and defo has a future. Atleast I know of a design to ask for when I arrive in nigeria. Good one bisola.

Anonymous said...

Bisola... no longer my little school daughter from Sagamu! Fabulous! - OO

Anonymous said...

Bisola was '90 or 91...Bimbo's (the model) older sister was also in Bisolas set..Its too cool!

confusednaijagirl said...

her designs seems to appeal to every woman. and congrats on your first interview.

Olawunmi said...

Bimbo is looking beautiful (as usual).

and i love that picture of Bisola. her creations are amazing too.

i love this blog!

Anonymous said...

OMARA???? IS THAT YOU??

OmoIbadan said...

Its a complex maze out here...a different genre of blogging

truth said...

Saw Tae for the first time in 2005 at a Craft Fair organized by Betty Clark of Brides Ville. Her attires are as cute as she is, and that means extremely cute. Bella you are on a new level o!Kudos.