FOUNDER of Orange Culture
Adebayo Oke-Lawal is a Lagos-based fashion designer, also known as Orange Nerd. He is the founder and creative director of the Nigerian clothing brand, Orange Culture. Oke-Lawal is one of the rising big names in the Nigerian fashion industry. His audacious designs have served to promote diversity and self-expression.
Adebayo Oke-Lawal: EARLY LIFE AND EDUCATION
Adebayo Oke-Lawal was born on March 4th, 1990, in Lagos State. Adebayo Oke-Lawal attended an all-boys high school in Lagos. He studied Finance at the University of Lagos and International Business Management at Northumbria University.
Orange Nerd’s interest in fashion started at quite a young age. He said he always knew he wanted to be a fashion designer but in Nigeria, it was difficult to foster his dreams. He was called names for wanting to be a designer and that fashion designing isn’t a profitable business, it was just a means to an end. there were no fashion schools in Nigeria at the time, so it was really difficult for him to keep holding on to the dream.
He would sketch all over his exercise book while he was growing up and his teachers would complain that he was always drawing clothes. He taught himself how to draw silhouettes using photos of models from the Argos clothes catalog that he’d borrow from his neighbor while redesigning the looks.
When he was just 10, a mini-store decided to make some of his sketches into clothes. By the time he was 10 he had over a hundred sketches and designs , that he kept in a tv box, one of his aunts saw it and asked him if she could make some of it to sell , he agreed and the aunt sold those designs. This inspired him to dream and keep pushing towards being a fashion designer.
Adebayo Oke-Lawal started his own fashion brand, “Orange Culture” in 2011 at the age of 21. He had an official runway debut at Lagos Fashion and Design Week the same year. Prior to establishing his own fashion company, Oke-Lawal worked for several Nigerian designers.
He has also done editorial work for foreign magazines like Vogue Italia, Natal, and many more. He worked for three years as a fashion editor for WOW! Magazine.
His work was formally referred to as “the Devil’s Work” by observers of his work when he produced his first collection because his collection was viewed as feminine. He got terrible messages and comments calling him talentless, but he also got some messages talking about how much the designs inspired them. He focused on the
Adebayo Oke-Lawal has styled many Nigerian top celebrities, including the likes of Chimamanda Adichie, Kate Henshaw, Rita Dominic, Munachi, Lala Akindoju, Tiwa Savage, Mo Chedda, Noble Igwe, Emeka Obi-Uchendu, Ice Prince, amongst others. His work has now influenced mainstream sartorial tastes, with even the most conventional individuals embracing androgyny in fashion.
Today, He is one of Nigeria’s most-recognized young designers, especially in the area of “pushing boundaries” with fashion. His brand, “Orange Culture” has gained both local and international recognition and has been featured in some of the world’s most notable magazines and publications, including Vogue (US, UK, Italy), WWD, BOF, The New York Times, CNN, L’officiel, Style.com, Fair, ELLE, Marie Claire and many others.
Orange Nerd partnered with Nigerian singer Davido in 2017 to create a limited-edition collection of his work sold exclusively at Selfridges stores in the UK.
Orange Culture was part of the 20 finalists selected from over 1221 brands all over the world for the first-ever Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy Prize (LVMH) for innovative design in 2015.
Adebayo was among the 25 Nigerians that made Forbes Africa’s 30 Under 30 list in 2018. Orange Nerd won the Future Prize Award for Fashion and Designing in 2016.
Based on available data, Adebayo Oke-Lawal’s current net worth is estimated at $200,000