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FLARE – The 2011 Oaken Events Fair: Kosibah & Preston Bailey shine at the FLARE Finale



FLARE – the Special Events Fair organized by Oaken Events was a triumphant success! The three day event took place at the New Expo Hall of the Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos from the 6th to 8th of April 2011. The fair included an exhibition, training sessions with industry professionals, an intimate dinner with the most renowned event designer in the world, Preston Bailey and a great finale featuring a stunning fashion show by Bridal and eveningwear designer, Yemi Osunkoya of Kosibah. was a proud media partner for the event and will bring you complete coverage of FLARE today. First up, the grand finale! BN Contributor Izie Igodan represented BN at the event. Here is her report:


My best friend recently got engaged (Yay!) and after the initial shock and joy came the questions … “when is the big day? Where will the wedding be? Will I be maid of honor (AGAIN! *sigh)? Will you have your wedding at KFA, Muson or Landmark? Who is your wedding planner? What are your colors? Who is your caterer? Have you gone dress shopping? Will your dress be custom made or off the rack?”

Truth be told, event planning has become a multimillion dollar industry overnight. Nigerians have naturally taken events to the next level by continuing to push boundaries in creativity. This of course has forced the Nigerian Event Planning Industry to deliver better quality products and services with a competitive edge that rivals those on the international scene.

You should no longer attend an event and find the food boring and tasteless or the décor drab and unexciting. Now, you should expect your small chops to be on point, the cocktails should be fruity and juicy, your taste buds tickled by food you can’t even pronounce. You should be lured with the selection of desserts, the décor should leave you with a lingering sense of awe, and the MC should keep you smiling long enough to catch the eye of a nice hottie!

Oaken Events Limited, producers of breathtaking and extraordinary special events such as weddings, product launches, birthdays, Corporate Parties etc… organized the Oaken Special Event fair to provide a platform for event suppliers to showcase their business and services. The event which ran for three days; from April 6th to 8th 2011, was a conglomeration of over 200 suppliers showcasing their products and services in a unique environment.

As BFF to the bride/future bridezilla, it was indeed my duty to attend the Oaken Event to scout for the best vendors, event planners, makeup artists and anyone who had any part to play in organizing a wedding. The level of attention to detail within the industry was overwhelming as we were dazzled by the vendors who specialized in car rentals, party favors, cakes, photography and many more.

Luckily I bumped into the very talented Ayiri Oladunmoye, her passion and creativity can be seen in every event she orchestrates. Rumor has it that she’ll work with your budget and turn your fantasy into a reality. Even the hostesses were smartly dressed by talented Nigerian designers Phunk Afrique and Remay Couture.

On the final day of the event, the funny and handsome Ik Osakioduwa was the MC for the night, his smile could make my heart melt and I made a mental note to keep him on the top of my list for potential MCs for the wedding. One of the major highlights of the evening was the Fashion show by Yemi Osunkoya, the internationally acclaimed designer behind Kosibah. His technique in Bridal Corsetry has won various awards such as coveted Bridal Designer of the Year, which he has won twice (2002 and 2004). His clients include Kelly Rowland, Alesha Dixon, Sheila Ferguson, and members of several royal families.

Yemi’s design celebrates the curves and shapes of real women and can be seen in his signature use of corsetry and draping allowing him to create gowns that flatter and enhance every woman’s figure. His meticulous attention to detail and sumptuous embellishments can be seen in every gown he creates. Yemi’s presentation was not only breath taking but exquisite. A girl can only wish for a one of a kind, handmade couture gown from Kosibah.

The special guest for the fair was Preston Bailey, a world renowned event designer, who has earned a reputation as the world’s preeminent event designer with clients ranging from Donald Trump, Oprah Winfrey to Michael Douglas.

He is renowned for his gift of being able to completely transform raw, ordinary spaces into sumptuous, theatrical environments. Mr. Preston gave a brief but insightful presentation about his history and long standing career in the events industry. Never having attained a high school or college degree, Mr. Bailey is to be applauded for his success. He told of his personal struggles and his humble beginnings. He encouraged all attendees to spend time perfecting their crafts and taking on new challenges. It was the perfect note to end this fabulous event.

So as the date draws nearer, the questions will have definite answers. The stress will increase but at least we know that there are capable planners willing to turn my BFF’s special day into a very memorable one.

See you at the wedding…

The Kosibah Fashion Show

People @ FLARE

Ayiri Oladunmoye - MD/CEO, Oaken Events



Photo Credit: Kola Oshalusi for Insignia


Watch out for photos from the exhibition & dinner.


  1. Naj

    April 14, 2011 at 11:50 am

    Now that was an event and a half….so worth the “Curfew” traffic abelg!

  2. loretta .o.

    April 14, 2011 at 11:51 am

    one word….beautiful….


      April 14, 2011 at 2:36 pm

      NOT EVEN….

    • loretta .o.

      April 14, 2011 at 5:53 pm

      thats a new one…was expecting the ‘not quite’ lol

  3. TAMA

    April 14, 2011 at 11:51 am

    nice event
    every one looks lovely
    wish i could afford Kosibah for my wedding dress

  4. Tiki

    April 14, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Dare I say FIRST?! I luuurrrvv Kosibah! Now let me go drool over the pics…

  5. Bubblybliss

    April 14, 2011 at 11:54 am


  6. Tiki

    April 14, 2011 at 11:54 am

    apparently not FIRST…mschew! still *heart-ing* the clothes though, lol

  7. Mbonyiwe

    April 14, 2011 at 12:30 pm

    Wow….! so so lovely.

  8. nigerian girl

    April 14, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    everyone looking fly. The lady in red really looks lovely

  9. Ginika

    April 14, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    Exquiste indeed!!! Wow!
    Goodbye frumpy and baggy dresses and tops with thin waist belts (apparently, thats whats in this winter) and say hello to the corset. I love every single item, cold or not I must to force the corset too.

  10. Ginika

    April 14, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    The hair (and makeup) is just elegance personified!

  11. Wedding Photographer Lodon

    April 14, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    WOW Yemi, wish i was there looks amazing! Outstanding!

  12. Sassy Diva

    April 14, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    Now i want to get mawid…mmmm

    • Tomisin

      April 14, 2011 at 2:33 pm

      Na wa o. Is it Married that has become ‘mawid’? smh

  13. shollyp

    April 14, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    kosibah is begining to look to repeatitive to me now as in same collections his models wear at every fashion show..Love u Yemi and your work nothing against you…but lets see something new dear!xxx

  14. tola

    April 14, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    love it buh d girl dt used the pashmina on ha dress is dt a nu style ?

  15. Miss ATL

    April 14, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    I really like Ayiri’s dress.
    The models’ makeup – on point!
    Event looked very well done.

    Kudos to all involved!

  16. Bisi BusyBee!

    April 14, 2011 at 2:18 pm

    Lovely dress(very decent too). Kosibah Creations rock!!!
    @tola, wondered as well wt d pashmina concept. but i tink its nice(creativity)*wink*


    April 14, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    CLASSY EVENT…the models are GORGEOUS!
    and MBGN Universe 2010 is prettier than i thought….I see you Ngozi girl! 🙂

  18. Lu

    April 14, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    Models -Beth Modelling Agency
    Makeup-Banke Meshiba

    • toriola

      April 15, 2011 at 4:29 am

      Please check your facts..those are not Beth Modeling Agency Models. Geez stop giving all credit to your friends

    • Lu

      April 15, 2011 at 11:54 am

      I was one of the organiser Toriola. Maybe you should ask your own friends and models who was the modeling agency we used for the show. Beth Modeling agency was the company Oaken event used to supply all the models. SMH HATERSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS

    • Sumbo

      April 16, 2011 at 4:06 pm
      Toriola, i think you should take a look at this blog. Models, Ceo of Beth modeling agency and team backstage.

  19. Sexce

    April 14, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    One word!

  20. gbeborun

    April 14, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    OMG this is absolutely STUNNING,the models are lush

  21. lily

    April 14, 2011 at 3:39 pm


  22. Tyna

    April 14, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    d wedding dress ar luvly

  23. Dmz

    April 14, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    Well hello there, Kosibah will always have my respect, Banke Meshida *kudos again* excellente

  24. neon

    April 14, 2011 at 6:55 pm

    nice dresses! but sill not worth 5000 pounds in my opinion!

  25. Deola

    April 14, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    I love no 1 wedding dress designer. Plus, Oaken events….ilike!

  26. ab_olu

    April 14, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    Is that Ezinne Alfa I see as one of the models. Didnt know she was with beth model. D girl dey try, maintaining a succesful 8-5 job and STILL a professional model.
    Kosibah is just an amazing designer o jare. kudos

  27. Purpleicious Babe

    April 14, 2011 at 11:37 pm

    At first, I thought the dude is short, then I looked again and realised, the couples are actually tall (I assume they are couples)…. fascinating….

  28. Oma

    April 15, 2011 at 10:59 am

  29. Mee...

    April 15, 2011 at 11:08 am

    Koshibah all the way !!!!

  30. julit

    April 15, 2011 at 11:45 am

    Yemi can u try something new? Same ole designs. I know u can’t do it. I trust u

  31. meg

    April 15, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    how much are the dresses?

  32. SeunD

    April 15, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    who did the hair ???? i like

    • Lu

      April 15, 2011 at 7:51 pm

      Ugo (make me salon) and Emeka

  33. moo

    April 15, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    oaken can work with any budget really,re u sure?even with 500k wedding budget

  34. bobbydox

    April 15, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    wow! i must say this is a one hell of an event that i feel tops my 2011 event

  35. diva

    April 16, 2011 at 1:35 am

    the models look lovely! dresses are amazing too.

  36. Ib

    April 16, 2011 at 5:22 am

    OMG!!my centre of equilibrium has just been disorganized…did u see d wedding gowns!!!

  37. Ayaoba

    April 16, 2011 at 10:47 am

    Ayiri’s looking goldish….i like!!!

  38. anon

    April 19, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    Yemi and Preston= magic and true talent

  39. elizabeth badejo

    May 8, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    kudos to Ayiri and her team,nice show, wish i was there!!! great honour to have the Legendary Preston Bailey in Lagos sharing his unique skills but Seriously we need to start looking inwards and celebrate upcoming bridalwear designers, give koshibah a break pls, same old same old. Today’s African bride wants a dress that compliments her personality and not a frock. Looking forward to the next one Ayiri.

  40. elizabeth badejo

    May 8, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    well done to the team @ Oaken events

  41. Air

    June 7, 2011 at 11:20 pm

    Fantastic show it was really. Everything was on point including most of your comments except for that of LU who credited BM Pro with all the makeup when there was Abeke Makeovers and even House of Tara. Please stop doing adverts you’ll not be paid for and don’t credit peoples work to your friends #imjustsaying#

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