If you are true to your hustle, it will sure be worth it — Kizito
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If you are true to your hustle, it will sure be worth it — Kizito

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If you are true to your hustle, it will sure be worth it — Kizito

Sartorialist, is a person who makes clothes, put them on the internet, blogs and provide beautiful designs for clients. In this interview with CHIOMA IRUKE, Abuja Sartorialist takes us through the intrigues involved in the trade.

INTRODUCTION
My name is Eziekeoha Chike Kizito. I am a decent of Imo state, a graduate of the University of Calabar and I am a sartorialist. I graduated in 2014 and have a BSC in Chemistry.

How it all began?
I started making clothes during my days in Unical. Then we were known as one of the best makers of T-shirts. After school, I went back to Lagos where I started sorting for Tailors from different areas. Then the opportunity came to be on MultiChioce fashion Protégé. I auditioned and was called. That was an eye opener for me. I had the opportunity of being mentored by the best in the industry and made amazing contacts. Then NYSC came and I was posted to Abuja. I came to the town and saw potentials and decided I was going to stay back and structure my business. It has been a risk worth taking.

Who are your target customers?
Basically I began tailoring because of the love and passion I have for men’s fashion. My clothes are creatively designed and well made for men of all ages. We focus mainly on traditional clothes as we try as much as possible to promote the African and Nigerian culture. Our business is generally for men with great sartorial urban taste. We like to call them, ‘sartorial Urban Clan’.

My inspirations
Inspirations come from Fabrics, art, visuals and pictures. I usually don’t plan it, the slightest things get me in that zone most times. I haven’t been a fan of arts so I am not a great artist I just put down the designs I get in the best possible ways.

Business location
My business workshop is located at Kubwa. We are working currently on opening a showroom but that is still under planning. We chose Kubwa because of the large space we got and also due to the quiet environment it offers. This can enable us think clearly and be very creative.

What is your business reach like?
Currently, we cover the whole 36 states through the partnership we have with transports and logistics companies. We have two West African countries we also cover one of which is Ghana.

The reception of our products has been amazing. Judging from constructive criticism, admiration, well wishes, clients’ satisfaction and referrals I can say we have good reception from our customers, it’s all been great. The social media on the other hand has helped in expanding our business as we have a wider clientele base.

My favourite designers
I really don’t have one because there are a whole lot of creative minds in the industry doing things. I will rather say I have mentors who I look up to based on how they have been able to structure their business over the years. Some of those are Amancio Ortega,Zara, Maiatafo, Seyi Vodi and all others. I get some ideas from their creative styles. We learn and get inspired everyday but I do not copy their works. We bring in our aesthetics in every of our piece that makes us unique.

Business name and logo?
PAPAZ is an acronym of words I live and stand by.

P is for prosperity, A ambition, P productivity, A action, and Z is zeal. The logo was designed by a good friend of mine because I needed something signatory. A business needs a logo because it’s very essential because even without the name people would see my logo and identify it.

How do you get funding?
For now we practise what we call re-investment percentage on each piece we make. When we charge for an outfit we put in three things, cost of production, utilities, and reinvestments. These go into the company’s savings from which we are using to set up our show room.

Estimated profit per day?
Because of the nature of our business, it’s made to measure structure not ready to wear. Profits can be estimated weekly but all I can say is that we do hit our targets and set higher ones.

Do you make clothes on display for customers?
We create designs, make samples and show clients to pick from. Luckily, we have gotten to a level where clients trust our judgement. Most times they don’t ask for samples they just indicate colours they want and leave us to do the rest. It’s a great feeling but it also challenges us to give them the wow feeling when they get their piece.

Do you intend doing this permanently?
Yah I do. It’s all about setting up a strong structure and exploring other areas of the industry. Trust me the industry is quite a large one.

Where I see my business in the future?
The dream of PAPAZ is to conquer Nigeria and Africa at large. Then, attract the international markets to come get franchise from us to set up same structure with PAPAZ in their country.

Advice to Intending Sarlorialist
Well what I can advise is that you start by sorting for tailors who have spaces or workshops already. Then, grow to a level you have great clients base. It will enable you understand the business properly. It’s a business and you don’t want your capital to drown. When you understand the necessary you can decide to invest in getting a workshop and employing tailors. It’s a gradual process for those coming in for the first time. As long as you can afford a space, a machine, tailor you can grow from there. A good sewing machine goes for 100 to 120 thousand naira. If you can afford that and have a space to operate from, even your house is okay to sew then you are good to start. But if you can’t sew then you have to employ a good tailor to birth your ideas then you are good to go.

Advice to the younger one
One advice I can give to the younger generation is have a strong conviction of what you want to do and pursue it. Trust me, if you are true to your hustle it will sure be worth it. Do researches, network with like minds, do the extra mile.

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