MEET ONE OF NIGERIA’S FASHION , IMAGE CONSULTANT – KELU OGUNLEYE
|ADEKELU OGUNLEYE CEO KELU IMAGE CONSULTANT|
LET’S MEET YOU? My name is Adekelu Ogunleye (meaning the crown that cares for the king. I’m a princess… and I’m NOT enjoying all the benefits! But you can call me Kelu for short.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR BACKGROUND?
I’m from Ilesha-Osun state. I studied English (Arts) from the University of Lagos. I graduated in June, 2006.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CHILDHOOD MEMORY?I came out of my mother’s womb and straight into her closet! Her closet is my earliest memory. As a young girl, I thought she epitomized glamour. Everything about her was and is still beautiful-her hair, her jewelry, her shoes and those long leather bags that are probably taller than I am..lol. My fondest memories are of me and Isegun (my kid sister) soaked our tiny bodies in her artistic jewelry which we wore to church on a Sunday! I’m sure Willow Smith was inspired by that look when she dressed up like Rihanna to the Grammys in 2009.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME A FASHION STYLIST?Since I was little, I’ve always wanted more in life. Not more things, but just better. When it comes to quality, it has to be the best there possibly is. The quality of a well made shoe. The quality of time I spend with my dogs Billy, Skuki, Pete, Andrea (May his soul rest in peace) and Bobby. The time I spend with the children in the Sunday school. Sometimes, it’s worth saving for some stuff!
Even all grown up and a part of the global fashion machine, I still love opening Vogue magazines and getting lost in the stories and pixs of all the amazing parties and people featured. I study the images. I dream. I make notes of certain outfits for future reference. I admit it’s aspirational and inspirational. But it’s personal indulgence that has probably had its professional merits, too in my career as a fashion stylist.
FOR HOW MANY YEARS NOW HAVE YOU BEEN IN THIS BUSINESS?
Unprofessionally, since 2001. I decided to brush up my skills in 2008 when I became a certified Image Consultant.
WHY FASHION STYLING, WHY NOT HAIR DRESSING OR A BANKER?
There’s no point going round about when you already know where you’re going to. I’m passionate about fashion/style. I love rendering services to people. I derive happiness by making other people happy.
ASIDE FROM BEING A FASHION STYLIST, WHAT ELSE DO YOU DO?I’m a public servant. I render services to the state.
AS THE PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT OF KELU IMAGE CONSULTANTS, WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES YOU
FACE OR FACED WHEN YOU STARTED OR NOW?
Most Nigerians always think that they can dress themselves up; that they need neither an expert nor a professional touch but what they don’t understand is anyone can actually dress themselves up. The question is, is what I’m wearing appropriate for the occasion, my career, lifestyle and body type? It takes a pro to analyze all these.
Another major challenge is sourcing for clothes for a celebrity or contestants of a TV talent show. Right now, my company can’t afford to buy clothes for the above mentioned people knowing full well that they won’t wear those clothes anymore. In order to cut down cost, I have to borrow clothes from designers or boutique owners in exchange for publicity which will be given either on the red carpet or end credit after the TV show. Sometimes, it’s usually a challenge to return the clothes back in good condition. In cases like this, I have to buy the clothes off. So it ends up in my styling closet!
HOW WAS YOUR FIRST JOB LIKE?
My first job was with Funlola Aofoyebi Rahinmi (Actress/winner of celebrity takes 2). It was a 2 day photo session for her website. First we conducted a fashion consultation in order to understand her personal style. I had to work with the photographer so that all the clothes that were sourced for were of unique colors and are camera friendly. It was fun all the way.
WHOSE JOB WOULD YOU LIKE TO STEAL?
(LMAO) I adore Rachel Zoe. She is one of the leading/successful Fashion stylists in the world. She has styled so many celebrities for the Grammys and other American award ceremonies. I wish she could just give me her clientele list.
IF YOU WERE NOT DOING THIS JOB, WHAT WILL YOU BE DOING?
I would probably be a nursery school teacher. I love kids.
WHO IS YOUR GREATEST FASHION ICON?I love Sarah Jessica Parker’s style. She knows what to wear, how to wear it and when to wear it. And just like me, she’s addicted to shoes.
WHAT’S ON YOUR PLAYLIST NOW?MI – UNDISPUTED
WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB?The fact that I make people feel beautiful from the inside to the outside gives me maximum pleasure.
WHAT WAS YOUR MOST UNCOMFORTABLE PROFESSIONAL MOMENT?
It was during MTN Project fame (season 3). The show was to start in fifteen minutes and nine (9) male contestants were yet to get dressed. The tailor was struck in traffic. There was so much tension and chaos backstage. He arrive 5mins to the show and all was dressed. I thought I was going to die.
WHO ARE YOUR BIGGEST INFLUENCES IN THIS JOB?Ifeoma Williams and Dolapo Amanda Adeyemi. They are both Image consultants and they have been my support till this point.
WHERE DO YOU SEE KELU IMAGE CONSULTANTS (KIC) IN 5 YEARS OR YOUR CAREER IN FIVE YEARS?I see K.I.C styling the likes of President Goodluck Jonathan and being the official clothier for Michelle Obama. I hope to have a complete fashion house with various departments (e.g. hairdressing, spa, boutique, nail studio etc) for both men and women and a talk show that addresses celebrities, their personal style and a sneak peak into their wardrobes.
HOW CAN YOU BE CONTACTED?+2348023458104, +2348065387783.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME.You’re welcome.