Lusaka, the vibrant capital city of Zambia bore Chomba Kasoma, Founder and Fashion Designer for Nalengah – A women’s clothing lifestyle brand.
Chomba‘s creative journey began at the age of 8 with beads. She made necklaces with beads, with the help of her grandmother who funded her first business. “I used to play with beads, making jewellery out of them and my grandmother saw my creativity and bought me more beads,” she relates.” I earned my first income at the age of 8”. At age 11, Chomba moved to South Africa to live with her mother, whom she refers to as her hero.
Growing up, Chomba always wanted to run her own business and be her own boss. Her journey to being her own boss married her passion for fashion began after high school. “My journey began after high school when my mom told me that I was no longer going to university ,I did promotions and told myself I will never go back to do promotions because I always wanted to own a business.” I did a course in fashion; the fashion journey matured in high school when we were asked to do a project and I did on fashion design because I believed, being a fashion designer was easy and didn’t need much research.
Inspired by her creativity and driven by a passion for fashion and women empowerment, Chomba uses her talent to communicate to women that they can be unique by embracing their bodies, by designing clothes that are suitable for their bodies. This makes them feel sexy, bold and be ready to conquer the world.
Nalengah clothes are bright, bold ,unpredictable with a bit of drama here and there. I am passionate about changing how women see themselves, I believe women are powerful human beings who are audacious, ambitious, beautiful and should embrace themselves in their own skin. “We don’t need to be like anyone else, we just need to embrace who we are ;letting women know that it’s okay to be who you are”.
I am passionate about women finding their true worth, by embracing what God gave them and knowing that’s enough to take them to where they desire to go with their careers, endeavours. I am passionate self discovery of a woman and seeing her channel all she is to be the best wife, sister ,mother ,business woman and to do so in the best of her abilities and of course she can only do so when she looks great .
Like any young entrepreneur, Chomba mentions that challenges through the journey are inevitable. “Having a low self esteem impacted on my business as I struggled to find my feet and poor costing of my products left me with bills,” she tells. “Despite this I didn’t give up. I persevered and found my feet, found a mentor who understands me, my visions and helped me get the business back on track again” she added.
“I would like to see my brand grow internationally, own a warehouse distributing different products under my brand and impacting positive change on young girls.” Her clientele has expanded with clients as far as the DRC and dreams of dressing women as far as Egypt and reminding them that they are audacious and they can conquer the world.
“If someone made a movie about me ,it will be a combination of comedy ,drama ,action and horror because some moments are so funny when you relate with your clients. Some moments are filled with sorrow, sadness and a sense of wanting to give up. Yet some moments are filled with triumph and victory, you feel like you can do anything. Some moments are filled with drama and action with deadlines. Sometimes you have nightmares of what the next project will be. My story would be a combination of all because I feel like I go through different emotions through different seasons. At the back of my mind, I know that I will have a happy ending, successful and imparting the world.”
I live by these words “Go where you are celebrated not where you are tolerated” and these words marry my creative gift, my passion for fashion and empowering young girls on the African continent.