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FashionForward with Tolu Omoyele

Last update - Saturday, March 15, 2014, 03:20 By Tolu Omoyele

Vintage looks, young style

Vintage fashion is about denoting the best of the past, whether it’s luxury shoes or high quality clothing or accessories. Think rummaging for secret finds that make intelligent investments for the future. Not to be confused with antique, vintage in fashion terms is more concerned with qualify of fabric and expert craftsmanship that’s typical of older garments. Plus their relative rarity makes sure there’s little chance you’ll run into someone wearing the same thing as you! Think exclusivity, not just invoking the fashion spirit of earlier times. And think Tola Vintage, a young Nigerian-Irish duo based in Dublin’s fashion-forward Temple Bar with a passion for old glamour…

Can you tell us how did you get started in fashion?

We both always have been very interested in fashion and just decided one day to try and sell some vintage bags and clothes. We thought the best way to start was online so we tried selling on eBay and it went from there, to markets and finally to our shop.

What drew you to fashion, and specifically to starting your own brand?

It’s the whole idea of trying something new and having it succeed. It’s very rewarding when it’s your own business.

Why vintage fashion?

Vintage clothes are just so unique and fun, that’s what made us want to be a vintage company.

What is your educational and professional background, and how do you feel it prepared you for a career in design?

Our degrees were in maths and business. So on the business side we were prepared, but on the creative, fashion side we had to use our own experience and learn that way.

What is fashion, in your opinion?

Fashion is how you express yourself. We think our clothes are great for expressing yourself by being individual and creative.

Which is the greatest fashion era to you?

We love the ’80s and ’90s! Our shop is so colourful and fun with all the great patterns and fun designs of those eras.

What do you most enjoy about fashion?

It’s fun and exciting. We do a lot of photo shoots and try and promote our name in fun ways like college pop-ups and fashion shows.

What’s been the most difficult aspect of launching your vintage line and boutique?

There’s nothing more difficult than others, but everything together is a lot of work. It takes a lot of dedication.

What do people need to know about fashion? What skills are important in a fashion business?

You need to be hard-working and creative to work with fashion. But above all, just be original.

What advice would you give a fashion newbie or student, looking to become a entrepreneur?

Find something you have a passion for and be dedicated to making it succeed. It’s not easy but it’s worth it.

What do you wish you had known before entering the fashion industry?

Everything we know now is through trial and error so I wouldn’t have wished it any other way. You have to learn from mistakes and constantly look on how you can improve.

Where do you see the business in the long term?

We have many goals for the future. We want to keep growing as a company and hopefully it will open some great opportunities for us!

What is your greatest achievement so far?

Our greatest achievement to this date is making it into the top five boutiques on the Asos marketplace. Also our shop in Temple Bar is something we are very proud of.

Be sure to check out these young social entrepreneurs at
boutique/tola-vintage and visit their shop at 4 Upper Fownes Street, Dublin 2

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