An Interview with Fashion Designer Hasifah Kigozi of HK Creations

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Hasifah Kigozi is a Ugandan fashion designer based in the UK and the CEO of HK Creations. The designer talked to us about her brand (HK Creations) and where she sees herself in the next 5years.

Tell us about yourself

Hasifah Kigozi is the CEO of HK Creations. I am at accountant by profession and I went to Bombo S.S.S for O level, Caltec Academy for my A level, had a Bachelor of Science in Applied Accounting at Oxford Brookes University and later travelled to UK where I studied ACCA (Masters in International Accounting)

Tell us about HK Creations

My clothing line is all about modesty! I live in a country where it’s hard to buy a skirt without a slit or dress with all your body covered. So once I started dressing more conservatively I realised I would need to make my own clothes since I couldn’t find exactly what I was looking for in shops.

What made you take fashion more seriously and make a career out of it?

I have always wanted to wear unique outfits ever since I was a child. I remember I used to sew my daddy’s shirts into small dresses that I would wear. A few years ago when I started my modest journey I learnt how to make skirts then one day I was at Notting Hill bus stop a girl about 20 came to me and asked me where I bought my skirt from I told her I made it myself and she was so surprised, she asked me if I had a website etc but my plan wasn’t to go in business with this hobby. Then a few months after I met a woman at My Doctors who wondered where I bought a dress I was wearing I told her that I make my own clothes and she begged me to make one for her so then  I realised I could do this as a business. That inspired me to take this seriously and I have been planning ever since

Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

Well I take each day as it comes since tomorrow isn’t promising but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t plan for the future. My goal is to take my brand on the high street and even abroad to other countries. Am starting online for now but would like to expand and have a shop on the high street. Also my brand isn’t about just clothes I have lots of products in the pipeline that am about to launch

Are you self-taught or did you study fashion design?

Am self taught, i spend hours in the library buy online courses and read alot

Do you have a specific research process when you start a new collection?

Yes I have lots of magazine subscriptions where I am always alert on all the hot trends plus i attend lots of trade shows in London especially the fabric shows

Was there anyone in your family who made you feel like designing?
No my family isn’t into designing at all

Who inspires you the most in fashion? Anyone who stands out?

In Uganda the two god mothers of fashion Sylvia Owori and Santa Azo plus I see so many young designers now that I admire. In the UK I respect Victoria Beckham and love Laura Whitmore, and Alexa Chung

How has your brand evolved?

I am only just starting and am excited to see what the future holds

What are three pieces every woman should have in her wardrobe?

A cool blazer; can go with jeans dresses, skirt, a maxi skirt they never go out of fashion and a black pair of jeans

Can you name any Ugandan celebrities that you would love to dress?

A celebrity I would love to dress in Uganda is Faridah Nakazibwe. Judith Heard knows her game too plus Desire Luzinda

What helps you get in the zone when you’re designing?

I think of an idea then I have all these drawing apps on my phone that i use, like once i think of that style it never leaves my head until I bring it to life

What do you think of Ugandan UK based designers?

I don’t know so many Uganda UK based designers; the few I know are really talented.

Who are some of your best Ugandan UK based fashion designers?

My friend Alecool, I admire him a lot and respect his game! Also there is another lady who has inspired me so much Linda Mirembe; she is really talented and has guided me. She is so kind

What advice would you give to young designers?

Its tough but hang in there, keep pushing, keep knocking on doors

The organizing committee of the Kitenge Festival UK gave you an opportunity to present your first collection at their 5th Edition, how do you feel?

I am so honoured to present my collection at Kitenge Festival. The Ugandan community in the UK is really supportive so it’s always important for us to lift each other up. I am also a big fan of Kitenge Festival

What should we expect from you at Kitengi Festival UK?

Just a sneak peak of whats to come. I will unveil my latest collection and I hope people will like it and eventually get a buyer because that’s the end goal

Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time after the Festival?

After the festival I plan to promote my business online and concentrate on that. Am not into fashion shows but I did this as a way of brand awareness. In five years time I hope to have fully grown as a brand and have various products lines. Not only fashion

Finally, how should one dress at the festival?

Festival dress code is strictly Kitenge. Anything with African prints/ fabric.

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