Kelechi Uchendu launched her fashion platform, Kay Kay’s Fashion, in March 2017, after embarking on a journey that began in October 2016. She shared her journey with Ayiba, explaining how, after a dream she had in which she attended a formal event during which she was honored for her accomplishments, she was inspired to bring the dress that she wore in her dream to life. Drawing on support, she decided she would not put her dreams on hold any longer.
She worked with a company in the Metro-Detroit area and, although designing the dress was not easy and took a couple of fittings, it was finally perfect after an arduous five months. During this time, she invested her energy into learning more about how to run a business which is why, when she launched in 2017, she received plenty of positive feedback.
“I believe that the key to creating enough hype is to be strategically interesting. I used the Beyoncé approach to create hype about my new brand. Before I launched Kay Kay’s Fashion I had kept everything a secret from the public, most of my family, and my friends. Then, in March 2017, I dropped my brand on social media and it was so random that it created lots of buzz.”
Inspired, she started designing chokers made with authentic fabric from Mali which she currently sells on her website, KayKaysFashion.com and Asos Marketplace. Both the chokers and the dress she designed have been featured in British Vogue Magazine and Tatler Magazine after less than a year of launching.
“I wanted every item that I produced to be authentic. Therefore, when I decided to create chokers using an African print, I wanted to make sure that the print I used was legitimately made in a country in Africa.”
Kelechi explains how the summer of 2016 was a period of intense change in her life. She finished a legal internship with the Environmental Protection Agency in New York and then graduated from Vermont Law School. At first she was unsure about moving back to Detroit and in hindsight she realizes that she would never have received the opportunities she did had she not decided to do exactly that. She is excited to continue in God’s path for her life in 2018 and is excited to see what other blessings he has in store for her.
“I would advise anyone looking to launch a fashion brand and/or platform to be very organized from the beginning. For example, make sure that you properly register your business, properly document your sales and expenses, and also have a plan on how you want to launch.”