To say that we're fans of Kemi Telford would be a huge understatement. Her unique designs blend bold prints and loud colour mixes with elegant shapes and exaggerated feminine silhouettes, and we're totally in love.
Her designs are highly wearable and versatile, and look just as fabulous with a pair of party heels as they do a pair of white pumps. We asked Yvonne a few questions about her brand, her recipe for success and what the future holds!
How would you describe the Kemi Telford brand in three sentences?
Fabulous, stylish, unique
Your brand is called Kemi and your name is Yvonne, is there a story there?
My middle name is Oluwakemi (short Kemi)
What does a typical day at the studio look like?
It depends on the day. But a typical day is more like this: We receive samples, try them on, and speak to manufacturers. Look at fabrics and match them to designs. Then, we ship orders and talk to customers. Deal with returns and deliveries… it never stops until we leave work.
How does your life experience as a woman, a daughter and a mother influence the work you produce today?
My life experience is what gave birth to Kemi Telford from a blog. How I run the brand and the ethos of the brand are born from my life experiences. I am the storyteller; Kemi Telford is a brand that tells stories.
You’ve built an iconic brand, what is your recipe for success?
Being myself and not trying to be what I am not—building a community of strong and independent women. Most importantly, being customer obsessed.
Are there any brands or creatives that have influenced your practice?
No, I have always done things my way and following my gut.
Do you have a collection that you’re particularly proud of? If so, why?
The first skirts I designed. It reassured me that I was on the right path.
How would you define yourself in three words?
Deep, hardworking, and utterly fabulous. Haha
When you’re not working, what is your favourite pastime?
Reading or watching Netflix
You’re stranded on a desert island, you can have song, one film, one book and one meal/food type to take with you, what would they be and why?
Film - Legends of the Fall
Book - The Buddha of Suburbia by Hanif Kureishi
Meal - Pounded yam with Egusi and plantain for dessert
What does the future hold for the Kemi Telford brand?
More fabulousness in small packages!