Since childhood, Adama Ndiaye had always dreamt of becoming a fashion diva. But her father wanted her to pursue higher education and get a stable job. In school, she read economics and banking, which landed her a job in the banking sector.
But, no matter how good the working conditions were as a banker, Ndiaye could not let go of her dream of becoming a fashion designer. One day, she decided to resign from her job and take fashion lessons at the blind side of her father in Paris, according to Business Elites Africa.
Her father was disappointed when he found out but later gave her his support. Ndiaye left her banking job in Europe and started her fashion label Adama Paris in 2001 in her home country Senegal. The brand began as a platform to sell African designs and costumes and offer other designers the opportunity to exhibit their creativity.
She has since the launch of her label been touring different countries showcasing different trendy styles she thinks make today’s contemporary woman. Her work cuts across street fashion in various countries including New York, Tokyo, Paris and Dakar.
Ndiaye’s fashion taste stems from her parentage. She was born to Senegalese diplomat parents in Kinshasa, Zaire. As a result of the work of her parents, she had the opportunity to travel to different nations at a young age. The different cultures and fashion tastes she was exposed to during her formative years have influenced her fashion trends. The cultural engagements, according to her, shaped what she has always wanted to do.
That is why she believes her label is more than how people want to dress but rather the construction of today’s contemporary woman. She said the modern woman must be open to different cultural tastes and must not be restricted to a single brand.
Ndiaye has also designed and created platforms such as the Dakar Fashion week to promote young talents and African fashion. She is the brain behind Fashion African Channel, which showcases authentic designs from the continent.
In 2014, the talented designer was featured in CNN’s series “African Voices” and was on the cover of Le Monde Magazine the same year as a result of her advocacy for women’s rights.
She also supports women in small and micro businesses in Senegal and other parts of Africa with skills in fashion design.