..We live in a society that can be particularly harsh and judgemental- Funke Aig-Imuokhuede


Newly wed Leila Olufunke Aig- Imuokhuede , a degree holder in Economics from the University of Nottingham .and a fashion retailer first came to our subconscious with her first retail boutique ‘Leila Fowler’ about 8 years ago. 4 years after, she opened a more affordable retail store called Heritage. Heritage caters to the discerning fashionable young woman, with prices starting at N2,000 to about N15,000 her goal was to have something for everyone at an economically friendly price.


T & E – Since the closure of your Leila Fowler outlet , you still seem pretty busy .What are you into these days ?

F.F – In addition to being a fashion retailer I recently joined the movement to empower Nigerian women. For many years I had wanted to associate my retail brand with an organization that would impact the community while staying true to the retail brand. In the middle of 2015 I started the Leila Fowler Dressed in Love Program. The Dressed in Love Program is a women’s clothing store that provides clothes to women who may have or may still be going through challenges. In the few months that the Program has been active, we have given out over 1,000 free complete outfits to women we have met through different organizations that work with women’s issues. Through clothing donations we receive from kind-hearted women we are able to schedule shopping days were the women we invite are able to come in and go through racks of clothes and try on what they like and go away with what suits them at no cost to them. It has been scientifically proven that the way we see our selves can have an effect on our inner man. Best selling books like John T. Molloy’s Dress For Success highlight how looking good on the outside increases one’s over-all sense of self worth or personal value and in turn affects people’s reactions and perceptions of us. The Program aims at promoting self confidence by making a difference in the lives of disadvantaged women that are or have gone through tragedies and trying times or women that are simply just trying to chart their path in life. The mission of the Program is a simple one, to promote confidence in disadvantaged women one outfit at a time.
We hope that one day Leila Fowler Nigeria Limited would be a recognizable retail brand in the Nigerian retail industry, and in keeping in line with that goal we are well aware of the importance of giving back to our community.


T & E – What is your target and how many women have you been able to reach so far ?
F.F – So far we have been able to help about 200 women. The target is to help as many women as we can, and to have a Dressed in Love boutique where women can benefit from the charitable contributions/donations from other kind-hearted women. We eventually would like for women to donate their time and their services to our recipients in order to help them actualize their dreams. By empowering one woman, we are able to make an impact in her community. She is able to teach her children and those around her thus creating a ripple effect of change through the community.


T & E – You are quite fashionable and you have always held your place in the best dressed charts . What informs your fashion style?

F.F   If I had to describe my personal fashion style I would describe it as being classic. I like simple clean lines that can easily transition from day to night and from one season to the next. I grew up in a family with many fashionable women, my mother and my grandmothers to date still take great pride in their personal appearances. I got and still get a lot of my fashion inspiration from them.


Funke Imuokhuede & husband

T & E – For someone from a background such as yours , how have you been able to stay grounded and away from the social media scandal radar ?

F.F   I think that we live in a society that can sometimes be particularly harsh and judgemental. I won’t say that I have always done or said the right things or made the right decisions. But that all comes with growing up and learning. Personally, I have always had family members around me, especially my Grandmother who says to always ask yourself “who am I”? Once you know who you are and whose you are I think everything else becomes a little bit more simple. As long as I am happy and ok with a decision, my family and those that I care about are ok and happy with it and most importantly, I feel that I am okay  with my Maker that is all that matters.

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NOTE – This interview was conducted a while ago by our Chief Editor .












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