When Isioma Aihie founded Grey Velvet Stores in 2012, she was firmly focused on achieving one thing: making the work of Nigeria’s best budding designers accessible to the public. And in the eight years since its founding, the outfit has ticked this box with the many wears it’s stocked and sold.
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The brand exclusively targets women. It’s a very competitive market, but the Grey Velvet team is determined to make a mark with their products.
Starting from a shop in the Ikeja City Mall, Grey Velvet now boasts four physical stores in Lagos and Abuja. A chain is taking shape. And its offerings are growing in quantity, and in their power to jazz up fashion enthusiasts.
There’s a hint of the success achieved by this brand in the following it’s garnered online. Visitors to Grey Velvet’s Instagram page are treated to an array of dresses, each designed in a unique style and with colour blends that catch the eye.
The page has an impressive variety of garb on display; would-be buyers may be struck by the volume of fine clothing available. Appreciation for the store is broad and visible too: the page is followed by tens of thousands of people, from novices to self-designated fashionistas.
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Grey Velvet is prizing its target market open with a host of labels from several dozen African designers. It also has two in-house labels, Isi Brown and Frankie & Co. Clothing types from these labels include dresses, jumpsuits, skirts, jackets, kimonos, tops, and boubous.
These items are made for people in a wide range of income levels, a fact reflected by their prices. They extend from clothing that can be afforded by many, to premium wears created for the financially well-off.
The Grey Velvet website allows it to reach a much wider area than it would with its four physical stores. Wares can be ordered on it, and worldwide deliveries are available.
Isioma says she intends for the company to expand further across Nigeria, and establish a strong foothold on the African continent. Eventually, she hopes, Grey Velvet will saunter into the league of world-beating fashion brands.
It all starts with capturing a dominant spot in Nigeria’s multi-billion naira fashion marketplace.
Featured Image Source: Jolly Finder
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