April is the owner of a fly, edgy, glamorous clothing boutique named Dazzling Dame. Dazzle is where high fashion and culture collide. At Dazzle each item is personally handpicked and styled. Dazzle is for risk takers and fly girls. When you shop with Dazzle, you will feel seen because they don’t just sell clothes, they offer a fashion experience.
April has loved fashion and style ever since she was a child. As a kid she would cut up shirts and use markers to draw on jeans or glue butterflies and stones on denim jackets. She’s a 90s baby in a time when music videos began to really shape a culture of fashion. April nurtured her vision of what she wanted to represent in the fashion world. Dazzle allows her to be creative and valuable. She loves how she gets to connect with her community, and has fallen in love with everything about owning a business.
April always says that the Dazzle Dame boutique found her. She was working at a job that she wasn’t happy in and trying hard to find herself. She had been doing a little research on how to start a business and wholesale, but she had much doubt and fear. She would tell herself “this is just a silly pipe dream and nobody is going take me seriously”.
One work shift, after she clocked out for that day, her manager pulled her to the side to tell her that her position had been terminated. She was crushed because her financial security blanket was gone. April sulked for about 3 days and after the encouragement of her dad, she decided to open her boutique.
Aside from the fact that Dazzling Dames feeds April’s spirit, she feels that her business is needed. She wants black culture to be represented because she has seen many brands profiting off black culture, yet refusing to hire black models, black photographers, black creators. April states that in owning this boutique, she found her place in this world. It is therapeutic for her and she has learned so much about herself through this journey. April noticed that her social media marketing skills could use improvement, especially because the boutique is exclusively online but she has overcome that obstacle by being open to criticism and help from her friend, who is now her social media manager ( @kenieceee ).
What keeps April moving forward on this journey is God, her family, her business team, and her community. She has a fiery passion for this industry and has hopes to expand her business within the next year.
Valiance for April means waking up and living your life with purpose, stepping out on faith and doing what's necessary. It means consistency, letting nothing hold you back: not your current, past, or present situation. It means being bold, unapologetic, dazzling.
Check out Dazzling Dame for more.
Originally from Nigeria, Adedotun Abe is the Founder, CEO and Creative director of Acesiki. Acesiki is a clothing brand that focuses on tailored garbs for men and women. The main focus is men’s attire, and they exclusively offer tailored attire to women. These garbs include tailored suits, traditional wear, and casual wear. Adedotun is passionate about what he does because he makes an impact. He is able to make outfits that give a sense of Identity or statement to each customer.
Adedotun was introduced to fashion designing about 8 years ago when he worked with a renowned fashion designer in Nigeria. His passion grew more when he saw how expressive fashion can be and took interest in the culture. Shortly after, he traveled to the United State of America to pursue a degree in Electrical Engineering but still had passion for fashion. About 4 years ago, Adedotun started selling pre-made Dashiki’s across the states, but he knew he could do more. About a year later, he started creating tailored suits and traditional wear made in Nigeria. That’s how the Acesiki business began. Adedotun loves to look good but more importantly, he desires to help people look good and contribute to the remarkable first statement one makes with fashion. Acesiki welcomes any body structure, height, or complexion, offering a service that can help all its customers look good without breaking the bank.
Acesiki founder believes every entrepreneur can attest to the fact that facing obstacles is unavoidable, and he is no exception. One of the obstacles he had to overcome was acceptance. It took some time for people to trust his product, not because it wasn’t good, but because people perceived him as a rookie. He overcame this obstacle by staying consistent with putting out creative designs and pushing through the voices of mediocrity. Adedotun prays to God, continues to believe in the vision, and takes breaks as needed to rejuvenate.
Adedotun hopes for Acesiki to become a top label brand around the world. He wants this brand to continue to inspire people from every background to be their best while wearing the best. He hopes to keep creating unexpected and unique pieces.
To Adedotun Abe, Valiance is to connote extraordinariness, promoting strength and valor. He hopes to inspire both young and old that your vision is yours and it can only grow by believing in it.
Check out more of Adedotun Abe's work @Acesiki