Childhood memories of colourful Nigerian dress were the inspiration behind Kala Paul-Worika’s textile business. With Kala signed up to Waltham Forest Council’s Forge project to support fashion designers, By Kala X appears to have a bright future.
Hi Kala. Tell us a bit about your business and background.
By Kala X is all about bringing bright and bold African prints to everyday clothing and home decor.
I started off making a selection of children's clothing, but that has extended into accessories, adult clothing and home decor items.
My background is actually in journalism, but I've always loved crafting.
Which places, people and experiences inspire your creativity?
East London is a hub of creativity and I love living in the area. Doing local markets really helps me feel inspired when I see how much people from all walks of life enjoy my creations.
My family are from Nigeria so that's another obvious inspiration. I always loved the vibrant prints we dressed up in as children for special events and wanted to work on ways to bring that into everyday wear and life.
What support do you get in Waltham Forest?
I've had a few opportunities to do Council-run markets which have always been fun - one was a few Christmases ago, and the year before last, I did one in the coffee shop/bar space at the town hall.
Taking part in [Waltham Forest Council run initiative] Forge Fashion last year helped me look at my little business in a more professional way.
What’s next for the business?
Definitely taking things to the next level with a personalised website. The dream is to have my own studio.
How can people find out about your products?
How would you describe the Waltham Forest community?
The support from fellow makers is amazing. I've managed to meet a great bunch of people and we all encourage and look out for each other.
From buyers there's definitely an interest in wanting to know the story behind their purchase and that their purchase is helping an individual achieve their dream.
Why should people support local businesses?
Local businesses are more likely to reinvest in the local community - so it all adds up really. If anything, it's knowing that their purchase has helped 'Sue around the corner' achieve her business dream.
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