Africa Fashion Guide
A social enterprise promoting sustainability within Africa's fashion and textile industry.


March 25th, 2018

I Interviewed a Hollywood Actress whilst wearing my Onesie // Business Insights

Really?…Yes …. really ūüôā

Now there are times I feel blessed and honoured to be in a business which connects me with an amazing line up of celebrities, industry leaders and influencers, but never ever have I interviewed someone whilst we were wearing onesies until I interviewed Actress Rosario Dawson and her business partner Abrima Erwiah of Studio 189 in 2014 (full interview here which goes into details of their business).

Yep, we did that. And we both agreed…onesies are the best things since sliced bread…or at least were at the time ūüôā AND on top of that this onesie wearing interview lead to them both speaking at my conference in 2015!¬†See video here

BUT beside the onesies I encourage you to read the pretty deep interview as it raises and present some relevant and key tips that you can take on board in your own fashion in made in Africa business.

For now I want to share with you some key business tips raised from the interview I had with them.

Alleviate risk–Spread the risk in your supply chain

Studio One Eighty Nine started off doing batik work in Ghana but have spread their offer to indigo dyeing, hand woven cloth and have also increased their choice of production location within their supply chain to more African countries.

Photos courtesy of UN ITC Ethical Fashion Initiative, Emmanuel Andre, Allen Coleman

Stand on your why–The reason you did this will drive your business forward

Rosario told me:

My first campaign was to save trees when I was ten. I grew up going to marches‚Ķso the social aspect has always been a huge part of my life. Even just moving into a squat when you‚Äôre 6 years old, you can‚Äôt help but have certain ideas. My perspective was changed very early on around people, power and specifically poor people helping poor people. “

Working with developing countries literally takes balls and a metal spine, but above all it takes a big WHY.

What’s yours?


Develop¬†Key Partnerships–seek connections through strategic partners

Abrima and Rosario both had their own set of connections through their backgrounds in film and fashion but it was through connecting with V Day and the Fashion Rising project arose which ultimately opened up the opportunity for Studio One Eighty Nine. Further connections have gone on to include Ethical Fashion Initiative (International Trade Centre), United Nations (UN) Women and locally in Ghana is Radford University.

Who is in your network?

What events or causes could you get involved me or connect with? Your answers for your business could be there.

Photo of myself with Ethical Fashion Initiative Director Simone Cipriani and former Clarks shoes director Lance Clark of Soul of Africa shoes (with Dulma Clark) who were one of our event sponsors for Fashion Africa Conference in May 2017.

So maybe Africa Fashion Guide is the partnership you need? Maybe it is by staying connected with us, learning through us and getting involved on our trips, our business courses, our events, our consultancy and sourcing agency is the tool you need to achieve the goals you wish to accomplish but have simply been putting it off due to your own fears or uncertainties.

Look around with new eyes and think outside of the box.

The answer is there for you.


“Begin with the END in mind”—have foresight

Stephen Covey author of one of my favourite books “7 habits of highly effective people” reminds us of how to tackle tasks so I’ll relate this to you. Having a goal at the forefront of your mind is the driver for the journey you will embark to achieve the desired result.

Rosario used her background experience and desire to help and seeing others empowered which spur her on for this business that was her end goal. And this is what encouraged Abrima to go forth with Rosario in this business idea. End goals and common goals.

  • What’s your end goal?
  • Where are you going?
  • What are you trying to achieve?


Take Action–Don’t put of tomorrow what you can do today.

Now I know that procrastination is a devil in disguise, one that holds us back in fear and uncertainty and we end up doing nothing in the end

So here’s what I¬†have done for you.

Throughout the month of January I coached, hosted and facilitated a 21 day program in a closed Facebook group to help you kickstart your African Fashion business. There I offered free tips, advice and trainings alongside interviews with industry experts a d Q&A sessions.

Did you know it takes 21 days to form a new habit ?

It definitely was a fun and informative month and I have saved ALL the videos for you to watch back and help you get back on track with your business goals.

To view and learn more simply follow this link for Fashion Africa Voices FB group

But don’t keep this all to yourself. If you think this is a great idea then share this blog with your colleagues in the industry.


I have also started weekly facebook live sessions called #FASHIONinFIVE

I will be bringing short bytes of information within 5 minutes every week within the Facebook group on the topics of African Fashion Рbusiness insights, developments in the industry, manufacturing, fashion shows events and conferences and more! If you missed the first week it was in the group still and join next week Thursday 6pm UK time in the Fashion Africa Voices FB group not to miss out on the fun!


Continue your¬†2018 with An African Resolution ūüėČ


See you in the group!

AND Remember,



There are many big problems. 


But YOU can be one big solution.




With love from Africa

Jacqueline Shaw

Your African Fashion Business Coach

Founding Director – Africa Fashion Guide Ltd



EFI Accelerator For African Designers 21-22 – CALL FOR APPLICATIONS

The EFI Accelerator Programme is back, and they are now taking applications until 31st of March. With the support of European Union, the Ethical Fashion Initiative aspires to propel creative entrepreneurs forward, providing the...
by africafashionguide



Always wondered what it is like actually INSIDE a¬†waxprint¬†african print¬†printhouse IN Africa! Then watch this video here ‚Č•‚Č•¬†–0c The full video over on my YouTube channel highlights compani...
by africafashionguide



Geneva, 2nd February 2021: The Ethical Fashion Initiative Рa joint venture of the UN and WTO’s International Trade Centre, has selected three Kenyan designers to participate in the second Ethical Fashion Initiative Acc...
by africafashionguide



Be the first to comment!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.