Young Designer Of The Week: Sadiqah Musa
TELL us about yourself, growing up, family background, education and all.
My name is Sadiqah Musa. I was born in Kano and raised in London. I have a BSs and Msc in Petroleum geophysics from Manchester University. I also have professional qualifications from London School of Fashion. I am a contemporary fashion designer.
What is AA Couture?
A.A Couture is a luxury brand designed with the modern Nigerian in mind. My garments are made from high quality, exquisite and rare fabrics sewn with extreme attention to detail. I am known internationally for my hand executed beading on French lace and Ankara. A.A Couture garments ultimately give a feeling of cultured taste and indulgence.
What else do you do for a living?
I am a full time mother of two handsome boys. I am also an Interpretation Geophysicist for an Oil and Gas company.
Please fill us in on your rise to fame and how did it all start.
I have always been around fashion and fabrics growing up as a young girl. I had great influences from my grandmother to my mother down to my aunts.
I became very serious about fashion designing as i started exploring garments to wear for my wedding. I was on the look out for designs and fabrics that represented me as a young contemporary Nigerian woman, but to no avail. This led to the birth of A.A Couture. I began sourcing fabrics from all over the world and creating designs for my family and friends. Now i have a boutique in Wuse II Abuja.
Which of your many jobs excite you the most?
I enjoy oil and gas exploration but my passion truly lies in fashion. My life is illuminated because of fashion. From beauty, to high street all the way to high fashion. Fashion allows me to be free and to express myself artistically. There are no rules or boundaries in fashion. It is an expression of ones self.
What other areas of your career are you looking to explore?
I have recently bought DSL Camera to take photographs of behind the scenes images during a photoshoot. I would like to explore photography a little more. As fashion and photography go hand in hand.
What has been the high point of your Fashion Career?
The opening of the Abuja boutique by far is my biggest achievement to date. I have a collection of more than 100 gowns in the boutique which took me more than two years to create. I take pride in every single piece and never compromise on quality.
What has been the lowest so far?
Unfortunately when you are on a journey as grand as mine you meet people along the way who are not entirely as they appear to be. My lowest point has been trusting a lot of people who later disappoint and even sabotage my work. Incidences like this are a blessing in life because you learn, you pick yourself up and you move on even stronger.
What are the plans for the future? Short-term goals, anything new?
We are planning an exclusive tea party for our established customer to come and view the new 2015 collection. This event will be a pre-view of the collection and serve as a thank you to our loyal customers.
What’s your take on fashion and the industry?
The fashion industry is a very exciting place to be right now. There are so many creative minds out there that push and inspire me to be better. The scene in Abuja is electric. Young designers are pushing the industry to the forefront. I am very optimistic about the industry, it will only get bigger as the talent pool expands ever so greatly.
Do you think fashion is underrated?
Fashion used to be underrated, that is certainly not the case now. We live in a digital world, a world of social media where people are taking photographs of them selves every second. We are extremely image conscious and the demand for looking fashionable has never been higher than it is now. Friends are trying to out do each-other. Keeping up with the Jones is the new way of life. This is all fashion driven.
What’s your day like in the fashion world?
Everyday is different. There is never a dull moment in the fashion world. One day we could be having a photo shoot the next, i could be with a high profile bride. Each one has its own demands, highs, lows and challenges.
Typically for a bridal package, we start the preparation three months in advance. Starting with pre-wedding gowns and photo-shoot followed by the actual wedding day events and gowns. A typical AA Couture bride orders 3 to 4 gowns. I am personally responsible for all the fittings and the safe arrival of the gowns and gown after care.
What’s your style preference?
Simple and elegant!
Do you have a style icon?
Victoria Beckham. She is the definition of chic.
Are you a trend/designer buff or does anything go for you?
I wouldn’t say anything goes but i would not pose restriction on any design preference. If the confidence and the attitude is right, it is possible to rock almost anything. For me personally i mix a little bit of both. I love designer labels but i also enjoy discovering rare quirky pieces in e.g. Morocco, flea markets etc.
Have you ever suffered a fashion faux pas? If yes tell us about it.
This i will take to my grave. My lips are sealed.
If you had an opportunity of swapping wardrobes with anyone, who would that be
My Mother. I still go into her wardrobe and discover the most exquisite items. She is a true fashion queen.
What’s the most expensive fashion accessory you own and how much?
A have a handbag addiction. So it has to be my limited edition Chanel clutch bag. The clutch is “priceless”
How do you serve your community?
I run a paid internship programme for young business minded people within the fashion industry. I give them a first hand experience in operating a small/medium size business. It’s a youth empowerment programme designed to engage and captivate the minds of the trainees with the hope of providing them with the tools to set up their own business in the future. This programme has been very popular and we hope to expand it in the near future.