South Essex College - Wale Adeyemi MBE

Thurrock and Basildon College nominated Wale Adeyemi, a young fashion designer, to be a recipient of a Gold Award.  Wale studied the BTEC National Diploma in Design (Fashion) between 1990 and 1992.  During his time at the college he learnt the skills needed to design, illustrate, cut patterns and construct garments.  The course gave him a good understanding of the basic requirements of business in Fashion and he successfully completed a work placement at Joe Casely-Hayford and at Fred Bare, during his course.  His two year National Diploma also enabled him to build a portfolio for successful entry into the Kent Institute of Art and Design. 

It was while Wale was working at the designer boutique ‘Head Over Heels’ in Covent Garden, whilst running a successful stall at London’s Camden Market, that he arrived on the fashion scene, with Urban Outfitters becoming his first official UK stockist.

Since his start, Wale has achieved notable individuality and clarity of direction unsurpassed by his contemporaries.  Since 1998 Wale has seen the development of his own very distinctive signature style.  His clothing is notable for its originality and its street chic, with his tagline ‘somewhere between the kerb and the boutique’. 

Wale lists celebrities such as Ms Dynamite, June Sarpong, Alicia Keys, Mos Def, Harvey, Beyonce, Missy Elliot, Lisa Maffia, David and Victoria Beckham, to name but a few that are keen fans and clients of his bespoke collection ‘Wale Adeyemi’.

Without the opportunities presented by Further Education in Fashion Design at local level, he would not have had access to many of the areas of learning that were essential to his career.  As a role model for other young people, Wale regularly partakes in interviews, leading discussions and workshops, such as the government funded Aim Higher programme and Karrot, an organisation run by the Metropolitan Police.  Wale also offers placements to many students himself.