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Kunle Afolayan, Deyemi Okanlawon, and Gabriel Afolayan model for Ire Clothings

Ire Clothings is the clothing line of the award winning filmmaker, Kunle Afolayan which started sometimes around August 2018 as Kunleskembe with an introduction of Kembe into the fashion industry. The Yorubas call it Kembe igbalode that is, Kembe as a modernized traditional pant.

This immediately met with a wide acceptance from the public, encouraging its full launching into the fashion world as Ire Clothings to include more collections alongside Kembe. Ire Clothings made its first outing on a platform given by the Africa Fashion Week Nigeria where it unveiled Kunlesdansiki, and also the iretshirt.

According to Kunle Afolayan, there is nothing wrong in wearing western outfit, but he feels like there is so much in this part of the world that can be showcased to the world. However, the Kembe design is actually not peculiar to just Yoruba or to Nigerians, the Arabians they wear it as well. But the Yorubas have their own Kembe which is what he modified and tagged as Kunleskembe.

The Dansiki also beautifully comes in different patterns and designs. The good thing about it is that it is not as big as the regular Yoruba Dansiki. It feels really light as when wearing a T-Shirt or a regular shirt. And it can also be worn with jeans, with shorts or even with Kunleskembe to match.

Ire Clothings in one year of existence has featured in many Fashion Events and runways included, such as The Fashion Souk, GTB Fashion Weekend, IGF Expo, Style by Zenith, African Fashion Week London, Lagos Shopping Spree and many others. It is now the trending fashion outfit on celebrities and influential personalities locally and internationally, all of whom are proud to be identified with the brand and model the products on red carpets, social events and even on their regular casual day. It has over 13,000 active instagram followers and the number keeps increasing as the demand for this modernized traditional outfit has never stopped.

We are inspired by the amount of creativity Africa has got

By the end of one year, Ire Clothings’ collections have included Kunleskembe, kunlesdansiki, Ireshirt, Iretshirt, Iresweatshirt, Irefacecap and Iresweatshirt. Obviously, the brand is here to stay. According to the director/designer, Kunle Afolayan, the brand is inspired by the amount of creativity that Africa has got. And all he wants to do with the brand is to showcase everything positive about Africa to the rest of the world. He believes the fashion space is big enough for every designer to stay creative and continue to inspire even the younger generation, as the fashion industry is an oil well yet to be fully explored.

Till date, Ire Clothings collections continues to receive global recognition and acceptance, with orders demanded and delivered around the world even as the brand expands beyond the shores of Nigeria.

Written by Taiwo Afolayan

Taiwo is a multinational award-winning Art & IT Consultant and a Certified Management Consultant. He is the Editor-in-Chief of The Fashionistar Africa, Founder of Argitech Limited, and an SDGs Advocate. He has over 10 years of experience in journalism, digital artistry, analytics, and photography. He enjoys listening to music, watching movies, and cycling.

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