DANIEL, WHO ARE YOU?
Even though my mother owns a clothing store in the most southern city of the Netherlands: Maastricht, I never expected to become active in Fashion, and neither did my mother. All that changed when I saw the passion of the Kenyans artisans working in Fashion in Kenya. On every corner of the streets there are tailors fixing and designing clothes, and they were busy!
WHAT PROMPT YOU TO BE PART OF THE FASHION INDUSTRY?
I was working in Kenya for the Dutch Embassy and saw how private sector can foster sustainable development. I saw a lot of potential in Kenya’s market and wanted to set up a social enterprise that was commercially viable right from the start. After making an African Super Wax suit with a tailor in the streets of Kenya and receiving so many positive responses, I knew I could build a business around it.
The retail sector is the second biggest employer on the continent (after Agriculture) and even if the sector remains relatively small in Kenya, the potential to grow is huge and one of the governments objectives. The fact that the retail sector employs many women and young people is a big plus as well.
Yet many artisans are still locked in intercommunal trade and not linked to international markets.
TELL AFRICAN FASHION WEAR ABOUT WAKUU
WAKUU aims to connect these local artisans with these market. We’re aiming to set a vibrant label that exports Africa’s colors around the globe while working with local partners, such as the Kibo Garment factory that is WFTO certified and Christ The Church Ladies Workshop which works with single mothers from Kibera.
We make slim-fit suits, t-shirts and bow-ties at the moment.
We use African Super Wax from Ghana and Ivory Coast and Cotton Made in Africa for our shirts. They’re really 100% made in Africa!
WHICH ONES ARE YOUR FAVOURITE CREATIONS
My favourite piece from the current collection is “Suit 3”, it’s colours are so vivid and playful and the type of print matches with a suit. When I’m not out rocking my Wakuu Suit, I’m wearing WAKUU Shirts. My favourite is “White Shirt 3” ! The shirts have a nice wide cut-off Crew-Neck and a nice long fit! You can flip over the sleeves for an extra super-wax detail, which looks great during parties.
DO YOU THINK AFRICAN FASHION CAN INVADE ALL MARKETS ONE DAY
Wakuu is really banking on African fashion going global, and it is already happening, colourful prints are taking over and more and more African Designers manage to reach the international stage, with or without African Super Wax in their designs!
Thank you Daniel for your precious time spent with African Fashion Wear!
To all our African fashion Wear lovers you can get a 10% discount on www.wakuusuits.com by using the code clnb-ktzo-hnrd