Average reading time: 5 minutes.
The evolution of streetwear has escalated over the last ten years and continues to change rapidly. Joshua Esimokhai Abikwi, popularly known as Jandy Abikwi, the founder and designer of BigTynsOnly is shifting the narrative with a fresh point of view.
Hailing all the way from Edo State, in Benin City, Nigeria, Jandy’s knack for making fashion statements stand out from the rest. “I didn’t just decide to become a designer. I’ve always enjoyed being creative and always wanted to look different so I started creating the clothes I wear from statement T-Shirts. Every time I entered the room people always turned heads to look at what I was wearing so that’s how my career started.”
He created his own uber streetwear brand, BigTynsOnly in 2017 before finishing university. Jandy’s sense of adventure and need to distinguish himself pushed him out of his comfort zone to make his own label of cutting-edge clothing.
“I was doing well for myself, I had the business running, I had consumers coming in while focusing on my studies and about to finish school,”
But he felt anxious and scared because a lot of the people he knew were going to be scattered all over the world, and he felt like he was going to lose his connection. “I went into a depression. But when I decided to focus on courage and act, I started the brand and that changed everything.“
Jandy’s new collection will be released on August 21st. The notion of bravery and overcoming fears seem to be the running thread, not only in the brand’s DNA but in the collection too.
“This collection is very personal to me,” says Jandy. “It was inspired by the beauty of courage. It takes courage to live outside the expectations of society. Believers have doubts too, but the trick is to never make doubt stronger than belief and I wanted my collection to reflect that.”
It’s evident that BigTynsOnly is more than just a fashion brand but a way of life. It doesn’t just provide fashion pieces, but also passes forth a message as well as bridging a gap between top-quality garments and affordability.
“We believe in making high-end clothes affordable for our believers, as we call our consumers. Our brand philosophy is that if you believe in yourself you can be more and do more,” explains Jandy.
The future of street-wear
The rise of globalization and the interconnectedness of the Internet has made the evolution of style and access to the world of fashion universally accessible. The images of street style have become a phenomenon all over the globe from Paris to Cape Town, with young designers putting their best foot forward in creating exceptional, Instagrammable clothes. “The world is now a global village and life has been very fast over the past few years. Even though the Pandemic tried to slow it down, and I believe technology has advanced,” affirmsJandy. He believes that the future of streetwear will be digitized and that there will be a lot of new technology that will come and change the game. “You will now see this also in the mood of marketing. Innovation will change the whole atmosphere of streetwear,” Jandy speculates.
Jandy is a firm supporter of black excellence among the youth of Africa.
He concludes, “We still have lots of stories to tell and many experiences to create. We also have exciting creations to reveal. We want you to grow with us so watch this space!” The BigTynsOnly launch will be held at 199 Loop Street, Cape Town at 12:00 noon, 21st August 2022.
Follow BigTynsOnly on Instagram.
Words | Sibusiso Mkize @sbustylegeek
Images | Jandy Abikwi, Ian Marasigan