Adjei Anang: Ghana’s Face of Bespoke Suiting
Africa is a goldmine of potential when it comes to the fashion industry. With the right combination of skills, markets and circumstances and time, the talent tin the fashion industry can flourish. Fashionpreneurs across the continent continue working tirelessly to achieve this goal, in their various areas of specialty. Adjei Anang is one such interesting entrepreneur, whose talent in tailoring is exceptional. Adjei Anang has built the brand Adjei Anang into a recognized symbol of perfection and quality when it comes to bespoke suiting.
Born and bred in Ghana, Adjei Anang is a tailor well renowned for his label Adjei Anang, which specializes in making bespoke suits for both men and women, as well as men’s shirts. Adjei’s career began soon after he graduated from college. His love for fashion was influenced by his mother, Yemoley Quarshie who also works in the fashion industry. It is therefore not surprising that he began his career by designing women’s collection in 2000. Its vision was to fill the gap in the fashion industry through provision of fashionable and trendy pieces of clothing for women. Adjei’s collections were showcased in Miss Universe World, Ghana, and Pageant in 2006. Following this glamorous event, Adjei travelled to Asia to demonstrate his talents in the Singapore Fashion Week.
Upon his return to Ghana, Adjei decided to officially set up his own brand store with the help of his brothers, Duke Ala Adjei Robert Okan Mensah Adjei. As he did the tailoring, Robert partnered as the showroom model for the brand. Adjei introduced slim fit men’s bespoke suit, for which he quickly got recognition. Today, his collection includes bespoke suits for both men and women’s, men’s shirts as well as blazers. Adjei exhibits the perfection of precise cutting which distinguishes his unique designs and enhances the personality of tailor-made suits. Throughout his work, Adjei aims to make simple and perfectly crafted suits, coming up with sophisticated designs even with colors that are generally perceived to be dull.
To date, Adjei Anang’s work has become synonymous with perfection, a neat finish, and quality. In line with digitalization, Adjei Anang has a website and online store from which clients from various locations can purchase. As such, it has managed to attract clients from outside of Ghana. Some of the countries from which the brand attracts customers are the USA, Portugal, Spain, France, Germany, Portugal, United Kingdom, Senegal and Nigeria .This is a testament of the impeccable work that the brand has developed over the years. Adjei Anang represents a unique combination of a keen eye for perfection, excellent tailoring and business skills, all in one person, something that is unique to find in entrepreneurs in the fashion industry. His fine hand in tailoring has earned him spots as a guests for prestigious events like the Paris Fashion week of 2019, Milan Fashion week and the New York Fashion week as well.
Adjei Anang also has a passion for empowering communities, particularly the populace of single mothers. In response to the lack of opportunities that single women are faced with, Adjei Anang has begun a program of capacitating women with tailoring skills and offering them employment in their company as a way of empowering them. This model is something that Adjei was fascinated with when he visited India and observed that a lot of tailors and seamstresses in India made use of the huge factories which were courtesy of the government, in order to be able to supply bulk orders for their businesses. In an effort to replicate a similar model which is not present in his home country Ghana, Adjei started the capacity building as a corporate social responsibility program to boost employment for women. The subject areas trained in are Garment construction, Millinery, Pattern Drafting, Care of Machine, Free Hand Cutting, Bookkeeping and Business Skills. However, this beautiful journey has had its share of challenges. Adjei Anang still battles with sourcing raw materials locally, a challenge that is common in many countries across Africa. This has implications on its production and lead times, which in turn affect the company’s capacity to deliver. Accessing sewing accessories as well as modern industrial machines is also another challenge that the company faces. This is further complicated by a lack of access to credit lines which will go a long way in funding capital expenditure for the business. Furthermore, the government and players involved in entrepreneurship programming have not been forthcoming in partnering with the brand so that the brand’s corporate social responsibility initiative can be sufficiently funded.
Adjei Anang on COVID-19
“Covid-19 has created a vacuum in the fashion industry with clients no longer working from the office, business becomes folded”- Adjei. In order to deal with the challenges COVID-19 has imposed, Adjei Anang has resorted to forming partnerships with corporates that still demand work wear, supplying them with branded uniforms. Adjei Anag is also looking forward to forging more partnerships through involvement in the AfDB Fashionomics platform, as it explores opportunities for growth through the various initiatives the platform provides.
Adjei believes that the African Fashion Industry (AFI) will be a household name in the fashion industry worldwide. It is therefore important for its stakeholders such as tailors and dressmakers to be integrated in the global industry. The brand views Africa’s fashion industry as a giant with the potential to raise nations’ GDP and create employment. However this can only happen if government provides sufficient support to the industry in terms of funding and infrastructure. As for the Adjei Anang brand, Adjei believes its renown will grow through its creative skills and perfect finishing. The brand continues growing in leaps and bounds, and doing its part in the community by training women in tailoring skills. Adjei Anang remains hopeful that eventually it will find partners for capacitating women and young people studying textile and garment manufacturing, to join the fashion industry.
To view more of Adjei Anang’s work, visit www.adjeianang.com
[Cover picture: Unsplash]