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Viva Aderko: Aiming for the stars

BY: Graphic Showbiz
Viva Aderko of VAAD by Viva aiming for the top
Viva Aderko

The road to making our dreams come true or fulfilling our purpose on earth is most often not a straightforward one. There are some bumps or curves that we ran into before reaching our destination.

And for fashion designer Viva Aderko of VaADbyViva, this is a situation she is well familiar with because her journey into the fashion industry is one that happened quite by accident.

Nine years ago, Viva was a career woman working with a consulting firm until a chance meeting with a young man changed the course of her life. It is this chance meeting that led her into fashion designing. 

 

A design by VaAdbyViva

She set up a fashion shop while still pursuing a career as a marketing consultant. Her new found interest in fashion designing grew and this led her to enroll in a fashion school to gain more knowledge about the industry. Within about four months of enrolling, she had a hang of the fashion process and she was more actively involved in the design and sewing process at this stage which gave her more control in the day to day operations of the business.

After doing a blend of formal work and running the business for some time, Viva decided to take the business more seriously and took a bow from banking in 2018.

“I had been comfortable sewing for a few friends including those abroad and other people but my friends encouraged me to take it more seriously. I didn’t even have a business name so somewhere along the line I got my friends to help me with a name and VaAd was born,” she disclosed.

Today, Viva, who is based at Community 7 in Tema is doing great; she currently has six workers including three technical staff, a supervisor and a digital marketing person. “It’s been good, I’m not where I want to be but when I look at where I am now I realise how far I’ve come.”

VaAdbyViva deals with mainly female clothes; everyday wear, Ready To Wear, corporate attire and branched into bridal wear last year. Her clients are varied and Viva disclosed that she gets about 80 per cent of them from social media.

Speaking on where she gets inspiration for her designs she said, "inspiration can come from anywhere. Everything you encounter on a daily basis can be an inspiration."

Sharing her thoughts on the fashion industry at the moment, the Chartered Banker said it is doing well.

“The industry is now very attractive unlike in previous years. Back then, people saw those involved in fashion as those who didn’t make good grades or were dropouts.

“But today, you have graduates getting into the fashion industry, there are people from all sectors, architects, lawyers, bankers all getting into it and this has reflected in the top notch designs we churn out. Now, I’m sure we can compete with some of the big brands internationally,” she stated.

One of the biggest challenges Viva faces in her craft now is sourcing for fabrics as there isn't enough local production.

Viva, who is married and has one child, obtained her first Degree in Psychology at the University of Ghana and got her Master’s degree in Industrial Psychology from Walden University. She is also a chartered banker.

She credits her husband for encouraging her to scale up and open up to social media. He currently manages her online/digital marketing.

On where she sees herself in the next few years, she said she wants VaAdbyViva to be one of the most recognisable brands in the fashion space. 



She encouraged anyone interested in taking up any venture not to be afraid. “There is no better time to start than now; start with the little that you have, When I started out I had only a hand machine because I didn’t have the space and resources.

“You must also have a passion for whatever you’re doing and most importantly, don’t get into it without knowing anything about it. It is so important because when your workers misbehave you would be able to take charge.

“If it’s fashion you want to do, then take yourself through a fashion school so you can learn everything about it,” she said.

VAAD by Viva is also into bridal wear