Nigeria, Top News

Queens of Africa: the dolls that dethrone Barbie

The Nigerian, Taofick Okoya has changed the habits of the children in her country with her authentically African dolls. The adventure began in 2008. Trying to offer a black doll to her niece, Okoya will be confronted to the inexistence of this toy that could be identified to her little daughter.

She then decided to take courses in doll making. After two years of training, the Nigerian has put on the market “Queens of Africa” and “Naija Princesses“, two lines that are a real success.

The label of the 43 year old Nigerian lady dethrones the legendary Barbie in the first economic power of Africa. The particularity of Taofick Okoya’s dolls lies in the color of the skin of the toys, outfits and fabrics that reflect the daily life of Africans. The Nigerian even succeeded in representing three ethnic groups of her country through her art (Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa).

Queens of Africa” and “Naija Princesses” are sold between 2.60 and 18.18 euros. Outside Nigeria, the first consumer of the label, Taofick Okoya also receives orders from all over the world, mainly (the United States, Europe, Brazil, Ivory Coast and South Africa).

Despite the success of her initiative, Taofick Okoya does not seem to be totally satisfied. She deplores the slim shape of the dolls that are similar to those of the Europeans. The Nigerian lady also wishes that all children of Africa have a doll that looks like them. She currently sells about 6000 to 9000 dolls per month.

 

 Original text by: Roger ADZAFO

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