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SassyChic Boutique

Updated: Nov 11, 2022

Can we take a minute to appreciate this women, her brand, and her designs?!!!

I'm in love with SassyChic Boutique!

Her models are all different, elegant, simple and especially the brand revisits the traditional fashion in a new angle!

Who could better represent the SassyChic models than Sassoum, the owner herself?!

But first, who is she?

She was kind enough to give me the answer herself .

Born and raised in America, she moved to Dakar 6 years ago. her background is originally a degree in Finance from New Jersey at Kean University. Mother of two boys, her family (brothers and parents) still live abroad in the USA. She lived in Dakar during her younger years to learn about the culture. She currently work a full time professional job in Dakar for the past six years.

I was curious about the process from the idea to the creation of the brand and the shop, and most of all the difficulties a woman, mother, and full time worker, had to overcome to implement the project.

« While living in Dakar, I’ve always had a hard time buying clothes. Affordable daily clothes!!! Everything was either super expensive (overly priced), too dressy (not casual enough) and too accessible. I would mainly buy my clothes from online and ship it to my home in the USA or buy while I’ll on my vacation or work travel. Which was not always convenient. »

After sometime while living in Dakar, she learned more about tailors and fabrics just from going to the local markets and from getting traditional outfits made during events such as ‘Tabaski' and ‘Korité’.

« Basic pieces were made such as Kaftans, linen pants, oversized shirts! Versatile pieces that you could wear to work and on weekends. I would also get compliments left and right! Although I am not a designer, I understood the concept. I also love to style pieces and accessories together. »

In addition, she knew she didn’t want to be stuck in the idea of sticking to one thing known strictly as designing. Hence, she thought having a boutique would allow her to express her mood for fashion when and how she want it without any limitations.

This boutique would also allow talented African individuals with a vision to display their work. All at affordable prices.

« You can’t do it all! Hence, you have to give those who are great at what they do a chance. »

We all know how challenging it is to work with individuals in Senegal. It took her about 2.5 years to get this business established. Not to mention the language barriers and the financing of such a project.

And when I asked her about the difficulty managing as a woman in Senegal, entrepreneur, and managing the family at the same time, this is her response:

« Yes, at times! Especially with three babies (a husband and two boys lol). Luckily while living in Senegal, you can always hire help (if you have the means to!) The emotional and mental support are the most needed ones. Without it, I am afraid you may lack the confidence to remain positive and optimistic. The people you hire also play huge roles. You must confide in them. Given that I work a full-time job (full time hours), I must depend on them to get things done. »

Her inspiration?

Names we already know in the country.

« I’ve been inspired by many entrepreneurs – young and veterans. Some include Cole Ardo Sow, Selly Rabby Kane, Sophie Zinga, Adama Paris and Khadijah Ba from l’Artisane. They are all Senegalese women Entrepreneurs. Although they are in the business of Fashion, everyone seems to have their own personal touch and aim. I respect and admire that. »

What I love the most about her shop, apart from the clothes and the display, is her collaboration with different brands all made in Africa.

« There’s this freedom of doing your own thing while supporting other brands. As for collaboration, it must make sense for me. It’s the objective, the cause and/or purpose! We’ve collaborated with a few women entrepreneurs such as Rabbal, Ndawette and Batiyaye. These ladies make affordable merchandises made in Senegal. The aim is to produce more of our own and sell it at reasonable prices, with the SassyChic experience! ».

I already love the direction the brand is taking and as for long-term, her idea is to open a large concept store in Dakar. A store which will carry many African brands with a touch of their own personal background. Have our people believe in our products and hard work.

And at last, when I asked her what inheritance and advice would she give us, here is what she said and I couldn’t agree more!

« I believe Senegalese/Africans want to support local entrepreneurs and become part of the experience. However, I believe we lack the sense of diversifying our products and price ranges. The reality is we live in Africa and not everyone can afford luxury. Therefore, I strongly believe in providing affordable merchandise with a luxurious experience. This also allows customers and clients to feel welcomed, appreciated and most importantly valued. Overall, let’s create the experience/market for those who wish to support local entrepreneurs but cannot always spend excessive money. In addition, its highly important to understand one must remain determined, focused, open but strong minded about their objectives while running a business in Africa. Not to forget humility! You learn as you go further in this business… and that’s what I am doing. »

Here! Now that you know what's behind the SassyChic Shop concept! here is a little taste of this SassyChic experience before making a stop to the shop!

* clin d'oeil à Dress And Toast

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