Violet Bannerman is the real name of the popular Ghanaian celebrity stylist, Akosua Vee. She is an old student of Labone Senior High School, where she became the protocol prefect. She went on to further her education in Marketing with Computing at Regent University College of science and Technology where graduated with a second class upper degree. She has styled quite a number of celebrities in Ghana, from the likes of Nana Ama Mcbrown, Irene Logan, Nana Aba Anamoah, Claudia Lumour and a lot more.
We caught up with her to talk about her life, work and her view of the industry.
*Interview has been edited for conciseness.
When she was asked how life as a celebrity stylist was, she said
“There’s nothing so wow about it, because the celebrities are just like us.”
She also clearly stated that she’s not a fashion designer, but a stylist and her biggest accomplishment is yet to come. She is a fashion blogger who had no intention of becoming a celebrity stylist until Nana Ama Mcbrown visited her blog and got interested in being styled by Akosua Vee about five months ago. She wasn’t up for it but she decided to give it a shot and it worked for her. That is when she started her journey as a celebrity stylist.
What is your relationship status?
“haha… I don’t think it is necessary.”
She looked a little bit excited about that topic but she’d rather not talk about it, so we had to let it go. She also didn’t want to talk about her saddest moment as a celebrity stylist. It looks like she doesn’t want her emotional life out there.
We see you have a very beautiful skin, do you have a special routine that produces such results? And recommend products.
“how I treat my skin is personally known to me, I don’t think I’m ready to share with anyone, but let me just be in my lane as a stylist,I always say, it is not really about the type or the kind of designer you wear, it’s about how you carry yourself. It’s about how you wear it, not the label. It depends on how you put stuff together. It shouldn’t be necessarily a designer wear.”
How has life been as a fashion blogger?
“I think I really make my money from the blog, you know people visit my blog and they contact me, I wear their stuff and we have a shoot and then I get paid. So aside the styling, that’s how I make my money. I don’t just wear your outfits and take photos, no no no, if so I’ll do the ones in my closet.
What are your views about the VGMA? Which celebs do you think nailed it and which didn’t?
“ you know this thing is so annoying because it wasn’t the Oscars, it’s Ghana Music Awards and we’re going to have fun and all that so I feel you should be comfortable with what you’re wearing, you shouldn’t let pressure get to you. It is very nice when we see our celebrities dress up glamorously, it’s so lovely and things are improving. They didn’t use to do red carpet but now they do and I want to say big ups to Oscar Doe because you can see some improvements in our celebrities. I don’t want to condemn anybody. No yay yay or nay nay comments. Everybody looked good in his or her own outfits.
Who do you think were the best five at the event?
“oh I’ll go in for Irene Logan, yes, because I styled her, Claudia Lumor , Berla Mundi, errm Nikki Samonas, her gown was vintage and lovely and then Selly Gally too wasn’t bad. They were all looking beautiful”
Do you think it is important to have a stylist as a celebrity?
“ yes it is very necessary, because they have very busy schedules and they might not know where to find what. Being a stylist I know all that and sometimes the shops give me stuff to style with and return it after because of our connections, but if you go as a celebrity, you would have to buy it. It is not only done in Ghana, Beyonce and her cohorts have to go through that”
So how do you see the fashion industry now?
“oh it’s better than the previous years and it is still getting better. Everybody is doing well. I won’t complicate myself by mentioning any names.”
Who is your inspiration?
“ I love this Nigerian fashion blogger, every morning when I wake up the first thing I do is to check up on her on Instagram, @stylebyada, she really inspires me. Something you wouldn’t wear she’ll wear it and rock it. She’s amazing. She’s wow!”
Any future aspirations? In Ghana and globally.
“ oh yeah, to style the first lady of Ghana , that’s my target, we are aiming high and maybe Beyonce. It’s very possible who knows?”
Any advice for upcoming stylists?
First thing I’ll tell them to take serious is God. I take my God very serious because I know where I’m coming from. But when I say I know where I’m coming from someone would think I’m coming from a poor background, NO I’m not. I will never forget my God, secondly they should be able to stand competition, if you don’t have competition how do you strive to become better?
Message to your fans?
I love them and I thank them so much, without them there’s no Akosua Vee. Their support, their advice and the messages they have been sending me on Facebook, Instagram, I wish I could reply all but I can’t. I see it all, God bless them. I love them. *blows kisses to them*.