I am a 25 year old graduate of Psychology from Nigeria. I started my footwear and accessories company Shem Paronelli about a year ago. During the course of this one year i realised just so much i want to make an impact in the lives of the locals and particularly local artisans who possess so much skills but have no means of marking their products marketable to the outside world. Due to this, i have set up barely a month ago a footwear line which we call TIPS(The Ijele Project Shoes). This label is to be producing casual chic footwears using locally produced and under-utilized African fabrics. Thus, we are keeping production of our materials and the production of the actual shoes among the locals, hence supporting the crafts in Africa, providing jobs for them (both the fabric artisans,embroideres, and local shoe makers). Our vision is to be producing at least 5000 pairs of Ijele shoes weekly.
We discovered this unique and luxurious African fabric called Aso-oke which has been in existence since the 1920's produced by the noble process of hand-weaving originating from the Western part of Nigeria, Osun state precisely. The wools used in the production of this fabric is as well spun by the locals. And we are working with small local shoe-making studios in the small towns and communities to mould TIPS using this unique fabrics. We intend to incoporate the use of other locally produced and naturally dyed african fabrics.
The key features about TIPS are the traditional low-energy process involved in the production of our materials, fair trade practices(we only work with artisans who meet our strict criterias), extensive artisanal craftsmanship(which means that TIPS work hard and only die at a good ol' age) and the economic empowerment and support for the locals.
Career history / Company history:
Have worked in different capacities in the fashion industry in Nigeria. As an Image/style consultant, fashion stylist, footwear and accessories designer.
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