With the expansion of the David Wej brand to the second-largest fashion capital of the world, London, the creative director Adedayo David Eweje speaks to Funke Babs-Kufeji about going global in the middle of a pandemic, why good tailoring is essential, and the future of men’s fashion.
Why was it important for you to expand your brand and get a flagship store in London right in the middle of the pandemic?
I had been planning the move since 2018 to open the store in 2020, but then Covid showed up. I wanted to suspend it, but then I thought it was also better to get in quietly during the pandemic to familiarise the brand with the terrain. And so, we started preparations in September 2020. The purpose was to build a global investable, and equitable fashion brand. Before this, I had foreign investors approach me, and most of the difficulty they faced was because I was local. Now that we have gone international, it’s easier to invest in the David Wej brand. Most especially by understanding the global supply chain.
What would you say are the pros and cons of this huge step?
Well, the positive aspect is that we are getting to understand firsthand what the entire global design structure is. We are also getting a better understanding of how manufacturing, supply chain, and distribution work to all parts of the world. The negative, however, is that we exceeded our budget while setting up due to the instability of the Naira to the forex.
You have been in the fashion industry for a while and have vast experience in tailoring. What is your favourite part of the process?
The finishing. It is always a joy to see the finished work, especially when it is worn well by a client. It’s an indescribable feeling.
What is the one common mistake you notice when it comes to tailoring?
The common mistake I see people making is choosing the wrong fabric for a design. When choosing a suit and its design, the fabric plays a major role in the finished product. So it is important to get the fabric right from the go.
Are there particular fabrics you prefer to work with?
For me, comfort and durability are key when it comes to fashion. So, I work primarily with wool, polyester, viscose, cotton and linen. I prefer if some come with a touch of spandex for extra comfort.
How will you best describe a well-fitted suit?
A well-fitted suit is mostly dependent on the customer’s body type. Men with pot bellies don’t like to wear fitted suits because it reveals what they don’t want people to see. So a suit should be well-tailored than fitted.
There is a huge difference between a made to measure suit and one gotten off the rack. When should you get a made to measure suit versus one off the rack?
Of course, there’s a huge difference. I’m an advocate of ready to wear, so I don’t like to discuss this because 95% of our products are ready to wear.
What makes a David Wej suit different from all the others out there?
The impeccable tailoring our ready to wear provides. It’s the perfect tailoring and fit.
Where do you see the future of menswear, especially in Nigeria?
The future of menswear is never-ending. It will continue to grow with our population.