I believe the first must have when stepping out is a beautiful smile, then confidence – Caterina Bortolussi

 Courageous, creative, humble,eloquent, stylish are words used to describe the Italian born creative Director of Kinauti fashion outfit and foundation in Nigeria Caterina Bortolussi. In a brief interview with, The fashion diva and philatrophist talks about kinabuti fashion and her new reality show. Read excerpts below.


Can you briefly introduce yourself

My name is Caterina. I’m the creative director of Kinabuti . I am a young, happy and grateful woman.
How did you venture into the fashion industry?

I had a dream of becoming a fashion designer but it seems just impossible for a girl born on
In the country from farmers in a small village of 300 people. I overlooked my dream and thought I should do what people expected from me and what seemed to be the way. But that way didn’t manage to make me happy and I realized following my dream was the way and that’s how my experience in fashion started

The brand kinabuti, how did you come about it?

Kinabuti is what I used to call myself as a kid (Caterina: Kina – Bortolussi: Buti) since I could not pronounce my full name. Kinabuti represents for us  me, my business partner and my colleagues- living our dream

what inspired you to start up the kinabuti store in Nigeria?

Nigeria inspired me to be my dream and to trust God When I moved here 9 years ago I realized that this could be the place where I could realize my dreams  like an intuition.
As a fashion designer and philatrophist, what are your challenges in running a fashion outfit and foundation?

The main challenge is funding , however Nigeria teaches us to be patience and creative
How do you relax?
I relax spending time on my own, watching beautiful and inspiring movies, making tasty and clean food , going to the beach with few friends, doing my yoga exercise, cycling or swimming. And when I can, spend time with my family in Italy. These are all things that make me happy and peaceful.

As a fashionista, what are your fashion secrets?
I believe we are all fashionistas or artists in our own way, expressing through our style our creativity or mood. I believe the first must have when stepping out is a beautiful smile, then confidence and as coco Chanel used to say: before going out you should remove a piece from your outfit  less is more  and very important in creating an outfit is Balance.
Talking about the kinabuti reality show, what motivated to do it?

Dare2dream has been in the pipe line since 2010 when we did “In our ghetto” which was our pilot project. Dare2dream became a reality in 2014 and it aimed at inspiring the youths that they can be their dream. it has been a beautiful journey, we toured around the Universities of Nigeria | it was emotional and we learnt a lot listening to the master classes of various personalities, it was fun and filled with Joy. It’s scheduled to be aired in March. The reality though became much more beautiful than the dream, Kinabuti is an ethical fashion label that uses fashion as a vehicle to empower women and youngsters


What are your projections for the future?

We believe in a synergy between our fashion label and our foundation | we dream of growing in a sustainable way.

Where do you see Kinabuti few years from now?

We are very excited about the moment fashion industry is experiencing in Nigeria, we envision for the industry an expansion in the distribution networks as well as a more organized production system. I see Kinabuti as one of the biggest  Fashion outfit in Nigeria.




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