IN recent years, Tanzania has witnessed improvement in the fashion industry; with the sector growing fast while young and energetic designers take control of the businesses so quickly.
While the fifth phase government under President John Magufuli is putting pressure on industrial set up in every sector, the fashion sector has a lot of opportunities to be explored.
Winnie Nzunda is among the new designers who entered the scene last year, and is currently making waves through her WStyleLoft design label, which produces unisex attires.
A graduate of the Hertfordshire and Cardiff metropolitan university in 2015, she found the need to invest in the fashion industry when she returned back home.
After researching the fashion market in Tanzania by getting involved in different fashion events and dialogue, in 2018 she decided to start her fashion business.
She started by designing and selling her attire from home, with the internet becoming her first shop. She opened social media platforms in Facebook and instagram known as @WStyleLoft, where she uploaded her designed outfits, and luring potential customers to make a purchase.
It is in those platforms where she advertises and displays her outfits. “Being passionate in the fashion business, I had to start up my online fashion shop where I would meet with clients,” she says.
She said most of the people who view her page show appreciation for her work, saying most of them go further and order for outfits.
With time, she came up with the idea of designing outfits for celebrities, and it is from this idea that she met Mimi Mars, whom she uses as her female ambassador.
For a male ambassador, she selected radio presenter, Perfect Crispin to market for male outfits. Speaking about her brand, Winnie says, “we make ready to wear and custom designs, because our brand believes that what you wear can say a lot about you, It says how you are or how you feel, so WstyleLoft adopts current fashion trends and adds a unique touch to fit different personalities, the brand gives you the chance to express yourself by customizing the outfit to your own preferences, giving you the confidence to be whoever you want to be,” she says. She further says that growing up as a teenager, she loved to watch fashion and lifestyle TV shows, which helped her to develop a sense of fashion.
“This is where my love for fashion started, and when I went to the university, I started saving money and I started an online store, selling clothes from other brands just to earn some extra money” She adds “I moved on to pursue other things after university but my goal was to have my own clothing brand and I was able to achieve this by opening W Style Loft in October, 2018”.
Winnie says her brand gives her clients a chance to express themselves by customizing their designs to their own preferences, giving them the confidence to be whoever they want to be by the prices that range from 30,000/-to 100,000/-, depending on the fabric and design.
Speaking on challenges, Winnie says that currently there are many fashion designers, and each compete for the same clients, so creativity is the only weapon she has in ensuring her market sustainability.