Fashion enables me express feelings about life – Madame Solange


She’s many things rolled into one when it comes to fashion, style and human resources. She’s versatile and a bundle of talent. Helen Solange Inengite, by profession, is a human resources expert whose interest in fashion and style is also blossoming.
Inengite’s hobby has grown into making her a force to reckon with as a personal stylist, a fashion entrepreneur and style editor of an online magazine, Madame
Her company, Madame Solange’s Personal Styling, offers personal image consulting, wardrobe evaluation, personal shopping, special events and party styling, interview styling, style parties/group seminars and Solange’s Magic Makeovers.
“I’m a personal stylist/fashionpreneur based in Lagos, but normally I travel around the world for my clients. Can you imagine the busy executive, the banker, the business person, and the stay-at-home mum no longer have to be rich and famous to enjoy a style consultation. My services are created to meet the needs of clients from all walks of life,” she says.
Although a Cameroonian by birth, Inengite is more at home in Lagos, a city she has grown to develop some sentimental attachment to, especially when it comes to fashion and style.
Inengite, a fashion expert, who holds a certificate in Fashion and Designing from the Singer School of Fashion & Designs, says, “I believe that in Lagos here, you cannot but just be fashion forward. Compared to the competitiveness of Nigerian fashion industry, I have been met with positive feedback and support from the Lagos fashion enthusiast.
“I see fashion and style as a must in city life, especially when you are working in a place like Lagos, because it is integrated into the culture.”
But Madame Solange is not only a fashion and style don. Academically, she obtained a degree in English Language and Literature from the University of Lagos and also capped it with a Master’s in Global Human Resources from the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom.
Before bagging her Master’s degree, Inengite worked as a fashion buyer/stylist and merchandiser with private fashion stores like Luomo, Ladies and Things. She also worked as a TV Producer with Africa’s premier talk show host, Mo Abudu.
Currently, she works as a Human Resources Administrator in one of the Liquified Natural Gas companies operating in the nation’s oil and gas sector.
Inengite says that the inspiration she got to start her blog, Madame Solange. com, which serves its cients a pot pourri of fashion news, style tips, designs, weddings, kids and more, marked the turning point in her life. Untitled“There is a popular section called ‘In Your Bag’, where a selection of successful and stylish women share the contents of their bags. So, at the moment, Madame Solange has 3000 visitors per day on the blog and a social media reach of 20,000 people per month,” she says.
Inengite further says having come this far with her talent, “I remember what my former boss Mo Abudu always says, ‘If you can think it, you can do it’. Why do I consider this remarkable? Well, the ability to conceive an idea is different from the ability to execute a thing.
“So, I believe I found my voice and uniqueness with Madame Solange. Through this platform, I am able to reach people like me who seek style inspiration and style advice.”
Asked why she decided to start Madam Solange, Inengite says when it comes to fashion, nothing gives her more satisfaction than the joy of seeing someone wear that total look.
And for her, having a total look means you’ve got style which translates to owning a total image.
Inengite, therefore, says Madame Solange was inspired by her love for style.
“Fashion has always been a means for me to express how I feel about life, and this is how I express personal style,” she says.
Inengite, however, notes that her biggest challenge when she started Madam Solange was how to combine her official job as an HR administrator with being a style blogger at her leisure.
She says her fears arose due to the fact that blogging can be time consuming.
Inegite, however, says but with some appreciable focus, she knew she would be able to combine her role as a fashion buyer/merchandiser with her regular formal job.
For Madame Solange, her role models/mentors are Mo Abudu, who she describes as an “upward professional and inspirational model someone can look up to, because she inspires me with her ‘Yes-youcan- do-it spirit” and Udo Okonjo, “She’s a lover of celebrating and empowering women so as to achieve their dreams,” she says of Ukonjo.
These two personalities, she says, have, therefore, influenced her adoption of the maxim, “If you can think it, you can do it” as her guiding principle.
Inengite dsicloses that she’s at home reading inspirational books such as “The Success Principles (How to get from where you are to be where you want to be)” by Jack Canfield, “You Can Do It Too (20 Essential t h i n g s e v e r y budding e n t re – preneur should know)” by Rachael Bridge, “The Aladdin Factor” by Jack Canfield and so many others, when she’s less busy.