Ade's Diary - August 2016

Where has the summer gone? I spend all year waiting for summer to arrive, and then in no time it’s past.  It’s hard to believe August has come and gone.  This summer has been a busy and amazing one, and August has been full of exciting things here at Nubian Skin.  I started off the month in New York wrapping up the CurveExpo New York tradeshow.  It really is great to be there every season as it feels like a mini reunion when you see the brands you haven’t seen in six months and see the same guys setting up the show who express enthusiasm to see you again and check in on how the brand is doing.

Once back in London, it was time to focus on getting our new Moroccan Nights campaign going.  Moroccan Nights is part of the Africa Collection, a new venture for us, and one that I am extremely passionate about.  When I first started Nubian Skin, someone mentioned that it would be great if I produced in Africa, and it stuck with me.  I knew that if I did produce items on the African continent, then I wanted it to be really highlighting the excellence that exists on the continent.  The images of Africa often portrayed in the media focus on poverty and chaos, and while that does exist, being Nigerian-British, I see and experience a very different “Africa” to the one often portrayed in the media.  With the Moroccan Nights collection and hopefully future editions of the Africa Collection, I wanted to move past the idea of producing in Africa meaning charity – this is a celebration of the excellence present throughout Africa.  The design, the skill, the technical know-how to develop a luxury product from Africa.


Creating a campaign is one of the most fun parts of my job, and this project was no different.  A few months ago, a wonderful group of Creatives moved in next door.  In addition to being so much fun, I was blown away by their talent.  Once I had my idea finalised, I knew I wanted to work with them on the project, so I explained what I was looking to achieve, and they also being of African origin got it immediately.  I honestly couldn’t have asked for a better result.  We’ll be interviewing YOCF and PDesigns soon, so you’ll get to learn more about them and the phenomenal work they do.

Another great group I was able to work with this month was She Leads Africa.  I had met them last year when I was in Lagos, and they held a SheHive in London last week in conjunction with Facebook.  She Leads Africa provides a great platform for young female entrepreneurs with a focus on the African and African-Diaspora market.  It was a privilege to close up their London sessions, share some of my experiences and meet with some great young women who are looking to do big things.

This has been a big month for being on camera or behind a mic.  Prior to the She Leads Africa conference, I was invited to speak about the She Hive on Vox Africa.  I definitely have a lot of respect for people who have to be on camera day in and day out.

Vox Africa

Earlier this week, I was able to participate in the Black British Business Awards first Mentor Mondays.  Sophie and Melanie have built such an amazing platform with the BBBA, and I am incredibly honoured to have been nominated for this year’s awards.  Mentor Mondays is another way these ladies are helping businesses in the community by offering people the chance to get online and ask questions via webinar to different entrepreneurs and business people.  It was great to hear the advice and experiences from the other panelists,  Gina Obeng and Mercedes Benson, and I look forward to watching it grow.

I rounded off my week by talking about bras and knickers with a great group of women on BBC Radio 4’s the Women’s Hour!  It was really an amazing thing to be on such an institution.  It will be broadcast on August 29th at 10am, but will also be available on Podcast, so make sure to listen!


After what seems like a crazy month and an all nighter working on admin (fun entrepreneur life), I’m off on holiday!! I am looking forward to some serious beach time.  In preparation I have my hair in braids for the second time in my life and the first time in about 20 years.  Big shout out to Devine Rootz in London for a job well done.  I am looking forward to living in swim wear, some simple Zara dresses  (£12.99!!!) I picked up and Hesper Fox Loungewear, which is a ridiculously beautiful brand, my friend Kristi has created.  One of the best parts of working in this industry is my new found knowledge of the most exquisite boutique brands.

Ade Braids

Till next time!

Ade xx

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