How is working in fashion different today than from when you started out?
Kelechi Uchendu : I officially started working in the fashion industry in July 2016 when I became a writer at Detroit Fashion News. I cannot believe I have been in the industry for over two years! I personally do not believe that the industry itself has drastically changed in two years. However, since I am more knowledgeable and accomplished I feel more confident being in this industry.
What do you think is the most beautiful dress you’ve ever designed?
Kelechi Uchendu : I absolutely love “the Beyoncé” dress. This dress (kaykaysfashion.com/shop/beyonce) was the first dress I have ever designed. This dress is currently the only dress sold at Kay Kay’s Fashion but we plan to add more dresses in the future!
Who is your favorite supermodel?
Kelechi Uchendu : Naomi Campbell!
Which competitor do you have the most respect for?
Kelechi Uchendu : I do not respect any competitor more than the other. I have so much respect for everyone in the fashion industry.
What role do you think social media plays in fashion today?
Kelechi Uchendu : I think that social media makes it easier for people to discover new designers. I also feel like social media makes it easier to network with others in the fashion industry.
What was your biggest fear when you started Kay Kay’s Fashion?
Kelechi Uchendu : While I was working on my dress and before I registered my LLC, I was very worried that I would never actually launch my business.
What challenges did you face as fashion designer from Africa?
Kelechi Uchendu : In the beginning, I encountered a few people that did not take my business seriously.
What is your favorite part about being a fashion designer from Nigeria?
Kelechi Uchendu : I love being a role model to young Nigerian girls that want to make it in the fashion industry.
Who do you consider to be the important face of the fashion industry in Kenya?
Kelechi Uchendu : I consider everyone in the fashion industry in Kenya to be important. However, if I had to choose, I would say that Wambui Mukenyi is very important in the fashion industry in Kenya.
What do you think about Nigeria’s fashion industry? In your opinion, do Nigerians designer’s support each other?
Kelechi Uchendu : I believe that Nigerian designer’s support each other. I also think that Nigeria has some really amazing talented designers. For example, Zuvaa (zuvaa.com) sells clothing from various designers all over the world and they have some gorgeous pieces designed by Nigerian artists.
What is your opinion on Kenya’s fashion industry and who would you like to work with in Kenya?
Kelechi Uchendu : I believe that Kenya has some really talented designers who create really unique pieces. I would love to work with Wambui Mukenyi and I would also like to work with Vaishali Morjaria.
Where do you see yourself in three years?
Kelechi Uchendu : In three years, I hope to have expanded Kay Kay’s World LLC to not only include Kay Kay’s Way and Kay Kay’s Fashion, but to include Kay Kay’s Beauty. Kay Kay’s Beauty would be a brand that utilizes unique and environmentally friendly beauty products from all over the world. I would also like to be selling my products from Kay Kay’s Fashion and Kay Kay’s Beauty in retailers all across the globe.
What are your greatest achievements?
Kelechi Uchendu : When I started my business, I did not have the budget to hire a PR firm. Therefore, I had to be my own PR representative. It was very challenging to get magazines etc. to feature Kay Kay’s Fashion. However, once British Vogue featured Kay Kay’s Fashion, I started to get a lot of press since many more people had seen and heard of Kay Kay’s Fashion. I would say that my proudest moment was when British Vogue reached out to me to include me in several issues of their magazine. The executive at British Vogue told me that they thought that they came across Kay Kay’s Fashion online and thought we would be a great fit for the magazine. British Vogue also thought that my brand could help inspire readers! To say, I was proud of myself would be incorrect. I was proud of God because of his favor indescribable. At the time, I was praying to God to get me featured in smaller publications around the nation, Vogue was not even on my radar because I did not think that I was accomplished enough for Vogue since my business was less than a year old at the time. However, God always gives us more than we need and ask for. That is why I will always be on Team God and I even created a #TeamGod t-shirt (kaykaysfashion.com/shop/teamgod).
Where can we find your designs both locally and international?
Kelechi Uchendu : You can find my designs on kaykaysfashion.com. We offer free shipping all the time for every customer no matter where they are located in.
How would you describe your personal style?
Kelechi Uchendu : I would say that my personal style is classic, chic, and sporty.
If you were given opportunity to work with local or international fashion designer who will you love to work with?
Kelechi Uchendu : It would be a dream to work with Tommy Hilfiger. I would also like to work with Alchemy Detroit (alchemydetroit.com).