Boss babe moment. Ladies and gentlemen meet our boss babe of the month, she is breaking the glass ceiling regardless of borders and barriers.
Kemunto, who is officially known as Lydia Cutler is a mother to 3 boys, she currently lives in The United Kingdom. Lydia was born and brought up in Kisii, Kenya until the age of 16 when she went overseas to study. Lydia is a fashion mogul based in Aberdeen and also runs a fashion week in Aberdeen city. Here is Kemunto in her own words.
You are our boss babe of the month; tell us about your company?
I run Aberdeen Fashion Week, which is a fashion trade show that sees fashion designers and fashion buyers from around the world come to showcase or buy their latest collection.
AFW was started in 2013, we were not known to the world back then but we had 2 international fashion designers come to showcase, now, our designers numbers have increased and we are excited for the future.
How Did You Start The Aberdeen Fashion Week?
Being a fashion designer and having showcased in fashion weeks around the world, I decided to start Aberdeen Fashion Week. Two main reasons for starting were: Aberdeen City being the Capital of Oil & Gas Industry in Europe, we get a cosmopolitan crowd, and as such, I felt Aberdeen was a good hub for a fashion week. When you are on the streets of Aberdeen, you most definitely meet or see someone from everywhere worldwide, what’s better than bring fashion culture to them.
How old were you when you started your first job?
Gosh!! Must we talk about this? I was 24 when I started teaching and that was many moons ago.
What is the best and worst decision you have ever made?
I am very particular about what I do. I consider all my decisions good. Starting fashion week in Aberdeen has definitely paid off.
You are a revolutionary in the fashion industry. What do you think is the biggest challenge for women in leadership?
There is no challenge for women leadership in the fashion industry, fashion industry is first and foremost “woman” oriented.
Wine or coffee?
Definitely red wine. Don’t ask why.
Which 2 women inspire you and why?
Two women who have inspired me are my mother Hon Abigail Matini from Nyamira County, she is the most motivated woman in the world. I am not kidding when I say that. If I start talking about her, we will need a few days.
The other woman is my recently deceased grandmother Yunis M Nyangena, a woman that woke up every day at 4am to pray for all her family. We are a large family. She died at the age of 109, she never stopped praying for her family until she was going. What’s better than prayers from grandma?
Looking back, what would you tell your twenty year old self?
Lydia, you have done very well, your motivation has definitely paid off, it’s not every day you meet a girl from Nyamira County being a director of a big fashion week in Europe.
How’s a day in Kemunto’s life like?
My day is full on, apart from working I am a mother. My day is divided to two sections..three actually, and then their was Facebook haha. Facebook has been my best marketing ground, I talk to our models via a facebook group, meet designers via Facebook and the likes.
What are the challenges you have had to deal with in your business?
The Fashion industry is crazy, lots of pretentious people (people who stab you on the back while smiling at you and pretending to care) people who feel that you are not worthy being at the top for reasons such as skin color etc. I have learnt to tell myself to keep my chin up, focus on my career, this is my time and no one is going to stop me, until my time has come to hand down my seat.
How do you unwind?
Red wine, my Friday evenings are wine time.
Going to the spa helps a lot too. I use the Jacuzzi, steam room and sauna everyday to relax me. I am thankful for my David Lloyd membership it is the actual stress cutter.
What makes you jump out of bed in the morning?
Literally? Taking my sons to school. Work comes later.
How do you achieve a work-life balance?
I don’t know, by asking God. The day starts and then the day ends (winks)
My hobbies and job go hand in hand. My hobby is sketching dresses and getting them made.
Finally seeing them on the runway is where the hobby ends and work starts.
What beauty secrets do you swear by?
I drink lots of water. I tell my models to do this every time as well. I also get lots of sleep.
You guys can check out Lydia’s Fashion Week Website www.aberdeenfashionweek.org
Read about our previous boss babes :
Thank you for stopping by,
Love & light,