The Nigerian fashion industry has grown significantly in recent years, and one area that has experienced tremendous growth is the luxury handbag market. Nigerian-owned luxury handbag brands have emerged as leaders in the fashion industry, offering unique designs and high-quality products that rival those of the world’s most famous fashion houses. Don’t own one yet? Here is a well-curated list of luxury handbag brands that are changing the narrative by creating stellar pieces
Marte Egele is a luxury bag brand established by Uche Marta Egele, who is a huge lover of life, travel, design, art, and culture. The eponymous brand is driven by family, genuine friendships, and individuality as the basis of creation. That’s probably why each piece is given familiar names relatable to everyone on some level. Also, they tend to produce their bags in limited quantities to ensure their customers have something distinct that represents them.
Zashadu is a leading British/Nigerian sustainable luxury brand that produces stunning hand-crafted leather bag pieces. It was established by Zainab Ashadu, who has a diverse background in art curatorship, acting, fashion styling, and architecture. The Zashadu brand works mainly with locally sourced sustainable leathers, exotic skins, and rough-cut precious stones, which are set in brass. All pieces are created at their workspace in Lagos, Nigeria.
Winston Leather is a Nigerian brand that makes luxury leather goods that all fashionistas, regardless of status, can afford. The company was founded by Winston Udeagha, a descendant of a long line of leather suppliers based in Kano, Nigeria. According to Winston, leather handbags aren’t just a statement fashion accessory; they can make or break an outfit and remain relevant regardless of changing trends. He learned the craft of leathermaking from his father, who also learned it from his relatives. For about 100 years, their leather has been one of the most sought-after materials, which is the situation with his handbags.
FemiHandbags is a luxury leather handbag line offering one of the best qualities among Nigerian-owned luxury handbags. Every one of their bags is inspired by simple, classic shapes and vintage-styled silhouettes, and of course, features vibrant colour palettes as well. The company was founded in 1992 by Femi Olayebi, a self-taught handbag designer. She has put her attention to detail to great use by skilfully merging traditional craft techniques with modern technology and hand-crafted touches such as whip-stitched sides, hand-stitched rolled handles, and hand-sewn straps synonymous with the brand’s aesthetic. Considering she became an entrepreneur by accident, she has done a phenomenal job with the ‘FemiHandbag’ brand, from showcasing at Pure London in 2010, getting featured on CNN Marketplace Africa, and being invited to showcase at the Autumn/Winter 2019 edition of Coterie, a fashion and accessories trade show in New York, to having her brand used as a case study for MBA students at the Lagos Business School in 2013 and 2019, respectively.
Shekudo is a premium leather handbag and shoe brand created strictly for women who appreciate the importance of luxury and lifestyle. It was initially founded in Sydney, Australia, as a clothing brand by Akudo Iheakanwa and her best friend Shetu in 2017. All of the pieces from each collection are handcrafted by local artisans using traditional fabrics, like aṣọ òkè, and modernised leather from leading markets within Nigeria. The Shekudo brand has prioritised highlighting talented local artisans who need more opportunities to be seen. So, they have set up a community responsible for teaching and keeping traditional techniques relevant to sustain African culture.
Shobikān is a luxury handbag brand with an offbeat fusion of East Asian and West African contemporary fashion and lifestyle. The company was founded by Esther Oyelese, a creative mind who has set a global standard with her unique handbags. Shobikān has created cutting-edge designs and creative works inspired by commonalities between Japanese art, language, culture, and carefully chosen African traditions. This accessory label has transformed the African fashion and lifestyle industry by injecting the best elements from African and Oriental arts to promote a fresh aesthetic.
TOKE MAKINWA LUXURY (TM LUXURY)
The Toke Makinwa Luxury collection is a line of beautifully designed handbags that exude elegance, class, and sophistication. The handbags are made from high-quality leather and fabric and come in various styles and colours. Each bag is designed to be both functional and fashionable, with features such as multiple compartments, detachable straps, and stylish hardware. What sets the brand apart from other handbag brands is the attention to detail and craftsmanship that go into each bag. From the stitching to the finishing touches, each bag is meticulously crafted by skilled artisans, ensuring it is of the highest quality.