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GQ Features Nigerian Accessories Designer, Niyi Okuboyejo of ‘Post-Imperial’ on His Design Vision Using Adire

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Post-Imperial by Niyi Okuboyejo in GQ - BellaNaija - July2015008

Profile photo taken by Matt Martin

Meet Niyi Okuboyejo, the Nigerian designer putting a different and African spin on workwear. Featured in GQ.com, Niyi created his brand – Post-Imperial to give people an insight to the art of using Adire for design and to create African pieces that people won’t just admire, but actually buy and wear.

In the feature, Niyi goes into detail in how he left Nigeria when he was 14 and started a new life in the United States. As he left, his mother told him how accepting and nice it was in the States, however, that was not what he met. Schooling in Houston, Texas “I learned very fast that being African was not cool.

He continued, “I ended up wearing a lot of masks, pretending to be someone I’m not, and becoming friends with some very not-reputable people.” “But I would lie to my friends and say that I was cutting class to smoke and sell drugs, but I was really going to honors classes.

Years later, he has created a fashion brand that heralds his Nigerian roots and is certainly making him popular today. Speaking to GQ about his brand and how he came about the brand name, he tells GQ writer, Jason Woolf – “It’s called Post-Imperial because it’s about the time after old regimes, and creating for today“. “It’s cool to look at old photos and fantasize, but we should be creating our own images. Twenty years from now, people should look at our time and fantasize about it.

Post-Imperial by Niyi Okuboyejo in GQ - BellaNaija - July2015006 Post-Imperial by Niyi Okuboyejo in GQ - BellaNaija - July2015

He uses the art of Adire dying to achieve the unique designs and reached out to “Adire masters” to help achieve his vision. But, “Each time I’m with them, the process takes about three hours, and most of that is spent convincing them that my ideas work. These guys have been doing this for years, so I have to convince them to try it.

Anyone can make something avant-garde, and people will look at it and think, ‘Oh that’s interesting,’ but they won’t wear it. I want to make products that people like because they like the way it looks. Once they pick it up, they can start learning about the story.

Post-Imperial by Niyi Okuboyejo in GQ - BellaNaija - July2015003 Post-Imperial by Niyi Okuboyejo in GQ - BellaNaija - July2015007

His collection of accessories include a vast array of ties, scarves, pocket squares, and more. We are excited to see more from Niyi in the future.

Read his full feature on GQ.com. Find out more about Post-Imperial here.

Jennifer is the Beauty Editor & Style Representative of BellaNaija.com. Get in touch - Send an email to: beauty(at)bellanaija.com or style(at)bellanaija.com | Follow us on Instagram: @bellanaijabeauty OR @bellanaijastyle | Follow us on Twitter: @bellanaijastyle

9 Comments

  1. toyosi

    July 29, 2015 at 2:21 pm

    so many YESES to this.

  2. rubbish

    July 29, 2015 at 2:48 pm

    nice

  3. Ms.b

    July 29, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    I love the ties. Awesome

  4. PurpleiciousBabe

    July 29, 2015 at 3:32 pm

    C.R..E.A.T.I.V.E!!!

  5. Chinenye

    July 29, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    Thumbs up Niyi. Keep spreading the creativity of Africa. Your ties are very lovely.
    #africanprintsrock

    P.S: I design throw pillows, bags, aprons, accessories etc using Ankara fabric. Check out my Instagram page: @revampdefinition

  6. gurl_wendy

    July 29, 2015 at 9:58 pm

    Wow, beautiful.

  7. unknown

    July 30, 2015 at 4:40 pm

    Thanks to Maki oh for making the Adire trend a big hit

  8. Olu

    July 30, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    Baba Ibeji! Well done o…this is a awesome! You should link up with Jidenna and provide him ties etc.

  9. Akin Okuboyejo

    March 31, 2016 at 12:18 pm

    Very tastefully made cuz.

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