Happy new WEEK. Today we are sitting down with my new found friend Yvonne Aviye Creative designer & CEO L’aviye.
You may ask who is L’Aviye? and What do they do? Well here is a summary:
L’AVIYE™ is a premium jewellery & accessories line specialising in handmade African-inspired fashion. With each piece handcrafted to perfection, L’AVIYE™ reflects an unrivalled combination of trend and style.
Our unique designs are made in the UK using carefully selected, high quality African-inspired fabrics and finished with meticulous attention to detail; creating bespoke jewellery & accessories that embrace vibrant colour and rich vivid tones. Previously known as Accessories by Abiye, our brand is excitingly exotic and innovative.
With L’AVIYE™, experience an exclusive range of unique jewellery – rich in colour and exquisite in design and add a vibrant and distinctive finish to any ensemble.
Abiye-Yvonne Dede, the founder & creative designer says, ‘‘L’AVIYE™ is a line I’m really proud of. With L’AVIYE™, I wanted to push the boundaries of West African-inspired jewellery & accessories to a higher standard of quality. Coming from a West African background, I’ve always been fascinated by the vast African culture and it is my dream to share my passion for the African print fabric with everyone who wears any piece from L’AVIYE’’.
L’Aviye has been feature in the British version of Elle Uk magazine and British based Company’s magazines.
Here is how my sitdown with Yvonne came about:
- Tell me a little about yourself. Where are you from? What’s your educational background? What are your general professional and non-professional interests?
My name is Abiye-Yvonne Dede. I am 25 years old and I was born in Nigeria. I’ve always had a long-standing fascination with fashion especially how fashion accessories can transform any basic outfit. As far back as I can remember, I loved to customise outfits, making them ‘my own’ by adding sequins, beads etc. I now own my own business, ‘L’aviye’ where I handmake and customise jewellery and accessories.
I studied biomedical sciences at Nottingham Trent University, and I’m currently in the 3rd year of a PhD programme in prostate cancer immunology at Nottingham Trent University.
Balera combines the crisp and electric blends of blue and teal with gold for a crisp design that’s vibrant in colour and perfect for all seasons.
- What does fashion mean to you?
Fashion to me is a means of self-expression. It is a form of art – something to be enjoyed. It’s an escape into a world filled with imagination, innovation and inspiration. I feel creative and sophisticated when I wear something that I consider fashionable.
- When did you realize you wanted to become a fashion designer?
I’ve always loved fashion. At a young age, I watched my mom dress up and loved the way she mixed patterns and colours to create any outfit and I guess that ignited my passion at a tender age. It was only when I was much older that I started ‘getting my hands dirty’ to create things.
Alyssa merges the tribal modern geometric design with summer yellows and wintery greens to create a collection that is bold and makes a statement.
- What is your favourite part about being a fashion designer?
I love freedom it gives me to express myself and my ideas. Designing and creating is therapeutic – a place where there are no rules and I can just do as I please. I never get bored creating – ever! There is always something that inspires me, something new and beautiful just waiting to be created.
- What kind of feedback did you get on your first collection?
The first collection I made for L’aviye was the Lavish Indulgence collection which launched in November 2013, and I was blown away by the feedback. I don’t think I’ve heard any negative feedback till date. That makes me so proud of the work we’ve done with L’aviye.
Layla’s soft pink, burgundy and gold captures the essence of autumn’s hues with its warm, wintery hues.
- Among your collections what is your most and least favourite ones? Your most sought out by buyers?
It’s difficult for me to choose one in particular because each collection is very special to me so I try not to have favourites. But in terms of buyers, the current collection has proved pretty popular with my customers.
- Do you have a specific research process when you start a new collection?
There’s no recipe as such. I like to do a lot of research into trends and colour schemes etc. before I start making anything. I start with a concept, which usually arrives to me in a very subconscious way, which then unfolds to me when I’m creating – it is a collaborative process. The combination of these things gives me ideas that I can work on. It takes a few months to build a collection, but you have to stop at some point, otherwise it’s never over. The whole process is endless, I guess.
Savanna combines the electric hues of burnt orange with the elegance of gold to create a gorgeous, rhythmic blend of both colours. A look that is suited for all seasons, Savanna simultaneously represents summer and winter.
- Who inspires you the most in fashion? Anyone who stands out?
Lisa Folawiyo of Jewel by Lisa is a huge inspiration for me. She can dress all kinds of women, but she has her own aesthetics, which makes her unique. Her collections are commercial and creative at the same time. She has amazing prints and she combines embellishments with African prints in a very interesting way. She’s one of the best, in my opinion.
Arianna offers a burst of purple blended with gold tones and navy blue, topped off with a sprinkle of lilac. Arianna is the perfect touch of colour to celebrate the arrival of spring.
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
At the moment, I’m working on creating the best products I possibly can. I have a team of product developers who review my jewelry & accessories. I spend time with them, collecting feedback on what I can improve on and I go away and try to implement their suggestions. I want L’aviye to be the best in the market and I’m willing to work hard to achieve this.
If enough awareness is made about L’aviye & we create the kind of interest that we are hoping to, I expect that L’aviye will be a major contributor to the world of fashion and play a role in complementing the already existing fashion scene. I would love for my accessories to make their way into the high street and to own a few boutiques around the world.
Sienna features a timeless blend of neutral black, gold and hints of grey to create a look that is sophisticated, yet feminine. A look that is suited for all seasons, Sienna is a L’aviye classic.
- Any closing conclusions/advice to give our readers or future designers
I really believe perseverance is essential in the fashion business. It is easy to throw the towel in when things get tough and there will be times when you doubt yourself and you wonder if you’ve made the right decision to start. These feelings are inevitable because nothing good comes easy. And if you’ve started and aren’t making a lot of money yet, ‘Do not despise the days of small beginnings…’ The most important thing is to believe in yourself, surround yourself with people who believe in, motivate & inspire you and keep at it.
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