Art, whatever form it takes, requires hard work, craftsmanship and creativity and Onyx embellishers has been able to do that! Exquisite Magazine took the initiative to have an interview with Okoliko Justina, read through as she shares her success story.
TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF
My name is Justina Okoliko Onyeche. I am the creative director of ONYX EMBELLISHERS.
This is a brand that is basically into fabric beading, fabric stoning, fabric embroidery, facilitating and training. We work with and for fashion designers. We breathe life into fabrics with Embellishments.
We have partnered with so many fashion brands over the years.
I have a penchant for volunteering, I have volunteered and still volunteering with NGOs. I am a lover of Christ, you can call me a radical girl for Jesus Christ.
I am a lover of anything Arts and Crafts. My favourite board game is Scrabble, I can play this game all day without getting tired.
HOW AND WHEN DID YOUR JOURNEY BEGIN?
My Journey into Fabric Embellishment began in my undergraduate days, I picked an interest in fabric beading from watching my elder sister perform magic with needles, thread, and some tiny tiny things she called beads then.
It piqued my interest, she taught me how to create some designs. So during my undergraduate days, I didn’t want to rely on the stipends my family sends, since I knew how to crochet and Embellish clothes I decided to reach out to people that would need my services.
Spoke to some designers around my school, I would knit hair nets, and fancy caps and would embellish them with beads and sell them to my coursemates and ladies in the hostels.
It served as a side hustle during NYSC. Even when I was on a 9-5 job, I still did it as a side hustle. By then I had built my client base, and it was now beginning to interfere with my 9-5 Job as an Executive Assistant.
One day it dawned on me that this skill transcends being a side hustle, and I decided to take that leap of faith.
I had the business registered with CAC, and to the glory of God “Onyx Embellishers” is now a household name in Fashion.
WHAT IS YOUR SIGNATURE STYLE?
My Signature style is the secret to my business😅 but let me just share it so that others can learn from it too.
My signature style is the ability to deliver promptly against all odds, not just prompt delivery but also a good and neat job.
WHO ARE YOUR IDEAL TARGET AUDIENCE?
When it comes to fabric Embellishments lots of people have this impression that it is only for women; it would interest us to know that it cuts across all gender.
So, My ideal target audience are fashion Enthusiasts, people that have penchants for beautiful and dazzling outfits.
We make ordinary clothes extraordinary with Embellishments.
WHAT’S BEEN YOUR BEST MOMENTS AS A DESIGNER?
My best moments are when I deliver jobs and the clients don’t have any iota of complain about it, when I hear “Hello Onyx, I was referred by….” Or when I hear ” I came across your page on Instagram, I have looked up your works on your page, they are actually beautiful works of art, I have some dresses that needs beading… ” Or ” your works are so beautiful and neat, I’m stuck with your brand”
These are moments that make my adrenaline rush because I know my account balance will thank me.
WHAT HAVE BEEN YOUR WORST MOMENTS AS A DESIGNER?
One of my worst moments I would never forget in a hurry was during my days of humble beginnings when I delivered an outfit to a first time client, she travelled out… I didn’t hear from her again.
Another worse moment was when there was a miscommunication with a client, in order to pacify her I had to loosen the work and start afresh.
It was a tiring experience because it zapped time, energy and resources from me. Guess what? After I delivered the outfits my client said to me” young lady, your customer service is top notch… Don’t worry I will definitely be back” till date she still patronises the brand.
I have learnt a lot from these experiences and that has actually helped my brand grow over the year.
ON A SCALE OF 1-10, WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR RESPONSE FROM CUSTOMER SATISFACTION?
I would say 8/10. The brand is actually still growing, we will get there.😁
WHAT MAKES YOUR BRAND DIFFERENT FROM OTHERS?
The ability to deliver on time, the quality of our material, As a communication student, our means and mode of communication with clients, and our customer service.
KINDLY SHARE TIPS TO STAY SUCCESSFUL IN THIS BUSINESS
The fashion business entails a whole lot, you will meet the cool, calm and collected clients, and also the no nonsense and very detailed client.
To stay successful in these businesses you need one of the most challenging gifts of the holy spirit, this gift is so hard to cultivate, that is the gift of PATIENCE.
Customers are always “Right” no matter what, you need patience to deal with them.
Another tip is the ability to pay attention to details: detailing is the Crux of fabric embellishments.
And also perseverance; some styles are difficult to achieve, with perseverance you will achieve it. the ability to persevere is very important.
There are others but if you lack these three, you just might not survive in this business.
WHAT ADVICE WILL YOU GIVE START UPS?
The gift of PATIENCE: At the beginning it would seem bleak and blur, keep pushing, keep working hard and you will get there.
Learn to try out beaded styles on your personal outfits, see the outcome first before replicating it on a client’s.
Never take on a job that you are sure you can’t deliver.
Let honesty be your watchword. If you can’t deliver at a said date, do well to communicate with your client on time and make sure you have cogent reasons as to why.
And most importantly don’t forget the GOD factor. It is very important, my mom always remind me that a man that can kneel to God in prayers can stand up to any challenges.
SHARE 5 FUN FACTS ABOUT YOU.
1. I love music, I listen to all genre of music but singing is very difficult… The voice is so croaky and bad, lol.
2. I am a lover of cartoons, I still watch it till date.
3. I won a weird award during my youth service as the “Most Reserved Corper”
4. I can play SCRABBLE all day without getting tired.
5. I love beautiful and well manicured nails.
SHARE CONTACT DETAILS
OKOLIKO JUSTINA –
Facebook: Onyx Embellishers
Phone Number: 09032355214