Fashion Designer: Araba Stephens Akompi
Araba Stephens Akompi is the Ghanaian owner and creative director of the celebrated Stylista fashion label. She has always been passionate about fashion, but her journey into the industry was not a straightforward one. After a career in the corporate sector in the US, she decided to change her career path and return to Ghana.
With faith, determination, hard work and persistence, she set up her Stylista label in 2011 – and she’s not looked back since. “I am so passionate about fashion design that new ideas and inspirations wake me up early every day.” It was in the same year that she had her first collaboration with Vlisco and it was the start of a fruitful partnership.
This year alone, Stylista’s creations can be seen in many of Vlisco’s 170th anniversary activities, including outfits for Ghanaian media personality Anita Erskine, and a special Vlisco exhibition on display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Araba describes her brand as fashion forward, feminine, contemporary and colourful. Her devoted clients can immediately identify a Stylista piece for its creative, well thought out design, usually made with Vlisco fabric. Her signature designs show a surprising interpretation of the design patterns in the fabric.
She also takes to heart the belief that fashion can empower women. Stylista employs a diverse mix of talent from numerous African countries with women in leadership positions. Her strong team, combined with her sharp sense of business, has helped the label to grow into the respected fashion house that it is today.