Fashion Chose Me
“FASHION CHOSE ME”
Kebirungi Nina Rutaagi Kakangaga started her career in Information Technology in her home town Kampala, Uganda; which nurtured her entrepreneurial spirit as she gravitated towards classes such as E-commerce. This re ignited her dream of fashion as she realised the possibilities the fashion industry opened up with new online technologies, on- line platforms and online skills like digital marketing that could support her business. She jumped right in by taking over and running her mother’s clothing store while gathering as much information and skills as she could, this lead her into Launching her company Free Spirit Fashion House.
Free Spirit Fashion House serves as a Life Style brand with its main focus on women with ample shapes and sizes a market she found was and still is underserved. Her custom made designs and her recently launched ready to wear line are popular among modern working women in the region and Ugandans living in the Diaspora. Her brand has expanded into retail distribution with two independent stores carrying her ready to wear clothing line. She has plans to expand distribution to department stores within the region In her spare time Nina enjoys the arts with a Theatre group “AMK Productions” that pride themselves in recreating the Broad Way scene in Uganda, putting on classic musical shows like MAMA MIA/ Dancing Queen, Dream girls and many more. They do this every year to raise money for charity, so far they have worked with rotary International to raise money to complete construction of the cancer institute in Uganda; this has opened up a new avenue of business for her as a costume designer. Her dream is to combine her knowledge, skills and experience, to build a successful fashion business that is centred among social entrepreneurship activities of her target market which she believes is critical to the success of her business in regards to social impact through creating opportunities for young women and girls to be transformed into high value individuals that are employable or that can start their own enterprise.
She is doing this through a programme “Fabric of Life” which works with selected charities like MLISADA (Music life skills and Destitution Alleviation) providing trainings, workshops, internship opportunities and community events, teaching fashion, design and entrepreneurship skills
Fabric of Life enables youth to discover their creative potential and turn it into a skill they can earn a living out of. It is a source of great motivation and pride for these young people to work in their communities and also be able to envision making a living and supporting themselves and their families.
In August 2017, we wrapped up the first season of this course which was 3 months training for 10 students who received certification in a range of skills including drafting, pattern-making, stitching, presentation, sales and marketing.
The programme was hugely successful and the response from the students was so positive that the sponsoring organisation (MLISADA Foundation) invited us to run a second course for Fabric of life in October 2017.