Sunday, September 22, 2013

Guardian Life Article - Bag Lady

You know we’re all about Buy Nigerian here at Guardian Life and this week I’ll be turning the spotlight on Nigerian accessory designers, most specifically bag designers.

It’s not always all about your Celine Trapeze, Chanel Boy or Dior Lady bag. Sometimes we need to keep it homegrown and explore the fabulous talent Nigerian designers have to offer.

Zashadu bags are carefully handcrafted in Lagos, Nigeria. Using Nigerian leather exported and treated in Italy, Spain or Portugal, exotic skins and rough cut semi-precious stones, each unique piece is a collector's dream.

Each style has a limit of only 50 pieces to be made in the world thus each piece is as different from the next by varying colour, leather and precious stones and the brand caters for both the women and men folk. Very innovative, Zainab Ashadu the Creative Director at Zashadu fuses the old with the new by combining vintage Aso Oke fabric with leather and sometimes 100% leather adorned with rough cut semi-precious stones from Plateau State, set in brass and lots more.

Obsidian bags are a personal favourite and the designer Isoken Ogiemwonyi comes off a successful ready to wear line to bring much needed life into the Nigerian luxe bag market.

Obsidian bags are made out of exotic ostrich and zebra skin and are heavily influenced by the designers Edo heritage giving it a much needed traditional Nigerian feel. This combined with the rich materials and modern influences combine to produce a stellar product.

Virgos Lounge are no slouch when it comes to the embellishment arena and this is seen in their accessories offering. Sticking to the tried and trusted Virgos Lounge aesthetic of bright colours and heavy beading, these bags are a fashionistas dream.

From top handle bags to hard clutches and oversize clutches, the Virgos Lounge bag collection has something for everyone.

Creative Designer Gbemi Johnson plays with prints and geometrical shapes when it comes to these African inspired bags.

They include box, shoulder and briefcase bags, clutches and totes. The pieces stand out for their aesthetic ability to complement any outfit; the handcrafted bags are executed with intricate stitching which complement their unique shapes.

The Onna Ehrlich accessories collection is classic and modern and designed for the everyday woman. The designer is half Nigerian and this heritage plus her California sophistication serves as major influences.

The bags are handmade from carefully chosen fabrics, leather and suede. Onna Ehrlich bags have been spotted with celebrities such as Cameron Diaz, Halle Berry, Mila Kunis, Michelle Kagen, and Eva Longoria

Luxury Nigerian label Jewel By Lisa which prides itself in excellent craftsmanship and products that their individual meticulous production take days to complete, have added a line of luxe clutch bags to their accessories line they started 2 years ago.

The clutch bags are sophisticated and ooze a private kind of chicness of the Jewel By Lisa woman. Each bag is constructed with the best materials and the some of the best artisans in Nigeria employing batik prints, crystals, glass bead and sequins which all morph into beauties that are not only a visual delight but a symbol, sort of a membership to a special club.

Minku is a Nigerian leather goods company that creates beautiful hand-made bags. Their claim is: "hand-made leather goods for a happier life"

According to the designer; Kunmi Otitoju, Minku was born, out of her ongoing desire to do something with the beautiful aso-oke fabrics she had brought back to Spain from a trip to Lagos. At Minku, they combine aso-oke, damasks and other special fabrics with Spanish-sourced leathers to create bags for men and women that convey a contemporary sub-Saharan aesthetic.



  1. I really love the blue zashadu bag.

  2. The O'Eclat Bag is my fav !

    xoxo sugarkanke

  3. Love the O'Eclat and Minku Bag.

  4. Nigerian designers are killing it!


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