TRENDY CAPS, BEAUTIFUL HIJABS, MOST LOVELY PINS, OTHER MODEST ACCESSORIES, MEET LOLASH, THE LAWYER WHO MAKES THEM ALL

One of the joys of this publication is to keep on inspiring young Muslims and to encourage men and women to dig deep and find their true calling in life. Indeed we are all made for unique purposes and it is most wonderful coming across someone doing something and deriving great joy in it. The 1one4 magazine team met Ololade Mulikat Olundegun at the recently concluded Muslim Public Affairs Center (MPAC) Convention in Lagos. What piqued our interest in her was the array of colourful and beautiful caps she had on display and her raw passion at what she does. We later got to understand that she is ordinarily a lawyer that makes trendy caps and accessories on the side. Enjoy her interview. Tell us about yourself My name is Ololade Mulikat Akanni Olundegun, I am 28 years young, my parents are Alhaji and Alhaja Oladele Akanni, and they are blessed with three children. I am the first child. I attended Maryland Convent Private School, Lagos; Federal Government Girl’s College, Ipetumodu; The Polytechnic, Ibadan and then University of Ilorin, where I studied law. I finished at Nigerian Law School, Enugu. My career has spanned work as Personal Assistant, Project Officer and I am currently a Legal and Compliance Officer at HassanHadid Global Investment Limited in Lagos. Also, I am the CEO and Creative Director of Lolash Trendy Collections on the side What brought about the name Lolash Trendy Collections? A tutor of mine in tutorial class coined the name Lolash from Ololade because of my love for drawing, the Trendy Collections just describes what we offer with our products. When did you start the business? I started the cap business right from my University days. I noticed the caps girls wore were the same design. That prompted the idea of making something different from the regular. Describe your business Lolash Trendy Collections is into caps, veils, hijabs, brooches, hijab pins, Bridals, etc .We design for both sexes, but majorly we dress the Muslim woman. Why did you start this business? To make a difference in the dressing of the Muslimah and send a message to the entire Ummah that you can be trendy and fashionable in a modest way. You say you are also a lawyer, why is a lawyer making caps? Lol. I am a creative person naturally, and being a Muslim, I needed to look good in the midst of my colleagues and in court. I had to find practical ways to appear good in spite of our robes, so I started making caps to go with the robes and the business grew from there. How useful has your legal knowledge been in this line of business? It has been very useful because of what I see around and the caliber of people I meet every day. Law gives me the inspiration to do more. What’s your creative/design process like? It’s a gift, a natural process and can hardly be explained. I get inspired by what I see and the creative process flows from there. What is needed to be in this business? Little capital to start with, a keen and creative mind, a lot of patience, good business principles and a heavy dose of discipline. How profitable or lucrative is it? Very profitable Alhamdulilahi. It depends on how disciplined you are in managing your proceeds. What advice would you give others who would like to go into this kind of business? They should go for it and put all in the hands of Allah (SWT) for guidance. What are the challenges you face in this line of business? Customers change their minds easily, orders are made at very short notices and payments are delayed which makes turnover rather slow. Alhamdulilahi, these has been managed with the help of Almighty Allah. What do you love most about making caps? Customer’s feedback, good and bad. This has been my driving force. What is your personal goal? My goal is to be one of the foremost designers for Muslim women and to encourage and promote in the society. Who are your mentor(s)? Arabel and Baytuzeenah How did you break into the market? Through the internet, referrals from friends, customers and the uniqueness of my products made things happen quickly for me. Alhamdulilahi. Do you love this job? Yes. My first love definitely. Do you have time for leisure? If so what do you do? Yes I do. I go for window shopping to have a feel of what is new in town. If you were not doing this business and practicing law, what else would you be doing? Will surely become be an artist. That is still in my long term plans. Where do you see this business in another 10 years? I see Lolash Trendy Collections in greater places. Allah knows best. How do you combine work with family commitments? It has not been so easy but Allah (SWT) has been my guide and strength. What’s your daily mantra? LA HAWLA WA LA QUWWATA ILLAH BILA!

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