The delectable ,shrewd, business owner, makeup artist and fierce fashionista, Mimi Daniels Creative Director and CEO of Step &Wear is one talented Nigerian woman, whose  trending new outlet is making waves in fashion retail  in Lagos. In this chat with MILLICENT AREBUN, she unfolds her ‘Mimi Daniels’ brand plans and reveals the secrets to her success.

Journey so far?
My name is Mimi Daniels, I started my fashion outlet because I love and  have a great flair for fashion. You know the saying that it’s best to make your passion your profession, well, that’s what I did. I decided to go into fashion after the company I worked with for a very long time left Nigeria (Siemens Company). I wanted to set up my own business because I loved money and wanted to make lots of it and what better way to start than to invest in myself, besides I couldn’t imagine working with anyone else after the close knit family bond I had experienced at Siemens.
Is this your first branch?
No, the Ajah  branch is actually my second  branch in Lagos.
What is the signature look of any Step &Wear fashion staple?
Trending styles and quality is the watchword for any fashion staple in my boutique
How do you keep your edge in the competitive world of retail fashion in Nigeria especially Lagos?
Everyone is not the same, all you can do is the best you can. I give my customers the best in quality, customer service and still offer them variety to choose from. Relationships matters most in dealing and keeping your clients happy and that what I try and build with my own customers. That’s my edge.
While particularly Italian and foreign based designs?
Because I found out that Nigerians love brand names and believe more in the quality  of foreign made cloths. For instance Italy, lots of people love Italian leather and whenever you offer them something made of Italian leather, in spite of the price, they will buy, because they believe in the quality.
What are your challenges so far?
The challenges are numerous and can make you think of giving up sometimes but am someone that’s very determined so I see these challenges as obstacles I just need to overcome and move forward. The challenges of a new location, traffic, exchange rate, customers satisfaction and so on, will always be there so I just handle them and move on.
How has the reception been so far?
It has been great! Lots of people come to my outlet and demand to know where the cloths I have is from so as to judge the quality. Nigerians love brand names and so when they come and find what they are looking for, they always come back for more. Am working on going to Italy to buy and choose my fashion staples myself.
Who is the  Step & Wear clientele?
Step &Wear man and woman is that fashion conscious individual that takes pleasure in looking good. So if you do come to my outlet and I guarantee that you will find what you are looking for and more.
What’s the secret to your flawless skin?
 I steam my fce every time by myself. My secret is a mixture  of Lime, Olive Oil and Aloe Vera, which I paste on my face and leave on for 15minutes before washing off , leaving my face smooth and silky.
Next five years for Step &Wear?
Oh, Step and Wear in the next three years not five will be a ,mega branch in Nigeria and hopefully aboard. This is just the first stage of my plan because ultimately am a designer yet a business woman. Plans are ongoing to launch my own designer on major fashion staples like cloths, shoes, bags, belts and even fragrance. All of these will carry the designer brand, MIMI DANIELS not Step and Wear.  By the power of God I intend to be the Gucci of my generation both in Nigeria and aboard and am working very hard to make my dream and ambition come to pass.
What’s your advise to others like you out there hoping to major in retail fashion?
Anything you want to invest in, let it come from within you. Have an idea and believe in yourself. Don’t wait for somebody to help or wait for advice before taking that step to actualize your dreams.
Personal fashion signature?
Am very colorful and adventurous in my fashion style and sense. So I will say whatever is fun, a bit crazy but classy is my signature. No boring fashion staple for me.
Fashion items you will go back home for, if forgotten?
My sunglasses! I don’t go anywhere without them.
Fashion must-haves?
Jeans!!!! I absolutely adore jeans. If you look into my wardrobe you will notice that instantly because I’ve got lots of them. I feel comfortable in them since I can dress them up or down depending on my mood.
Fave fragrance &brand ?
Angels and Gucci.


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