MD/CEO, JUMRASH Aso Oke, Hajia Fatima Bello
Reveals How To Choose The Right Aso Oke
Jumrash Aso-Oke is one of the top Aso-Oke producers in54 Lagos run by Hajia Fatima Bello, who runs a 3rd generation Aso-Oke business. Her grandma started it in the family, then her mum took over and she also took it over from her mum.
And ever since she took the business over about 12 years ago, her Aso-Oke & Fabrics business has witnessed growth. Although, she operates from her two outlets at 33, Yaya Abatan Street, Ogba, Lagos and 37, Isheri Road, Ogba, beside County Hospital, she is set to open another Jumrash Aso-Oke outlet in Lekki, at 26, Nelle Mall, along Admiralty Way, Lekki Phase 1 on September 24.
How did Jumrash become the leading Aso-Oke business in Nigeria? It is because of the creative nature of Hajia Fatima Bello, the beautiful owner of the business. She is on top of her business and industry. She is also part of the changing trends in Aso-Oke. “At Jumrash, we customise and stone Aso-Oke, and all kinds of fabrics.”, she explains. “We do embroidery, laces, Voile Lace, Sequins, Crystals, Ankara Motifs, Silk Ankara. We do men fabrics too. We do Senegalese his and hers. We do blings on Aso-Oke, Ankara, T-Shirts, Laces, Glasses, Silk and Chiffon. We do bridal accessories etc.
It is her good job that has endeared her to many of her clients who patronise her. She caters to the need of many celebrity women and high-profile society ladies. She also consults for some First Ladies across Nigeria.
Last week, City People Publisher, SEYE KEHINDE and Reporter, ADEOLA FAGBIYE caught up with the woman behind the brand who spoke on how to choose the right Aso-Oke for your event, what makes her brand standout and how she got the name Jumrash.
What makes Jumrash stand out from other Aso-Oke brands?
I think, what makes Jumrash Aso-Oke stand out with its Aso Oke is because we customise our own design. We don’t do the regular Aso-Oke. Most times when customers come, we give them our designs, mostly they buy into my ideas because when I give them my ideas its always different from other Aso-Oke.
How did you develop the Aso-Oke brand?
Actually my grandmother was into the business, then my mum took over and I took over from my mum we the sister are into it too.
How did you develop this modern style of Aso-Oke?
Hmm…My mum used to do the regular Aso-Oke. I am from Kogi. I am from Okenne, Igbira. Thats what we do for a living. Thats what we do mainly. Thats what we are known for. When I took over from my mum 12 years ago, I just added my own ideas to create my own designs. So, when I took over from my mum, I started embellishing it. I will take my aso oke out of Nigeria, design, bead, sew, and I started introducing it. And as I began to introduce it people started buying the idea.
So what will you call the current trend in Aso Oke?
We have some customised ones. We have some beaded. We have some stoned. Yeah! Beaded and stoned. That is what is in vogue right now.
The beaded, stoned are different from each other. That is what is trendy at the moment. The texture of the Aso-Oke also matters, some like it soft while some prefer it thick.
How has Aso-Oke evolved over the years?
Hmm. It hasn’t really changed, because we have always had the soft and thick ones but it depends on what the customer wants. It is how the customer wants it. Like we the Northerners, we like the ones that have the soft texture but I think the Yorubas prefer the thick ones and I guess its because they think it brings out the quality in Aso-Oke but it isn’t like that.
Can you tell us how to choose the right Aso-Oke for an event?
Most times when people want to buy an Aso-Oke, they already have an idea of what they want. So, when they bring it, we just chip in our ideas and they buy into it.
So, can you tell us how much your Aso-Oke cost? My own kind of Aso Oke is affordable.
We have for the lower class, the middle class and the upper class. They also range in price, we have from N150,000 upwards for the brides. Then we have the regular one for Aso-Ebi from N7,000 to N15,000 upwards.
How did you get the name Jumrash?
Well…I derived the names from the names of my late children My first daughter is Jumai and the other one Rasheed I lost both of them so I put the 2 names together, so I choose to name my store after them, that is Jumrash.
Can you tell us what the business was like in the days of your grandmother?
They did the regular Aso-Oke then. But we chose to modernise it with embelishments and various designs. We chose to take Aso Oke to another level. That is just what we do.At Jumrash we customise Hollandis too. When customers bring it we would just customise it and embellish it. We do monogram embroidery, we mix it with laces. We call it customised. Hollandis. They do it in China but we do it here. Most people bring their material and we just do it for them. Sometimes they buy their readymade material not sewed. We can change it to something else.