Breaking Down Barriers with A.D Henson



Psychology and fashion are two words that you don't usually get to hear or read about in the same sentence, well..until now at least!
Malawian stylist, founder and image consultant for 'YOUR IMAGE by A. D. HENSON', Allidah Daphney Namame has figured out a unique way to merging the two and is making quite the difference.

"I am working on an official YOUR IMAGE by A.D.Henson website which is going to break a lot of boundaries within the fashion and social wellbeing communities. I want to believe that through the work that I do, eyes can be opened towards the way fashion and mental health are viewed as separate entities but yet have an amazing force to initiate significant change in the lives of many.
"People love clothes, shoes, hair, makeup etc but not many know that these same loves can help them towards self-discovery and dealing with deep_rooted internal issues. I am also working on some television projects to be released in the year 2019. I must say that I have excellently talented people in my team and I owe it all to God for orchestrating the encounters with such visionary individuals", said Namame.

For the elegant stylist, this is a journey that started just a couple of years back, a journey that has allowed her to marry her two passions, fashion and psychology, together.

"Well, I am a clinical psychologist and a fashion enthusiast. After attaining my first degree I realised I could merge both fashion and psychology whilst making a living out of it. I then went on to attain a post graduate degree in Business Administration to be able to run my current image consulting business. I am currently studying to become a certified fashion psychologist because I believe fashion can be a means of helping people with emotional healing as it has for myself in the past.
"I started off in 2014 as a basic stylist for my friends and family and later transitioned to working with fashion shows, television programmes and product marketing. At the end of 2015 I made the decision to return to Malawi from having lived in different parts of the world. This was because the styling and mental health scene in Malawi was almost no-existent and I certainly believed there was a gap that I would be filling and in_turn make a difference in these areas.
"I have since established myself as an image consultant through my business YOUR IMAGE by A. D. Henson, also known as YIAHmw(yiiya), helping individuals and SME's with their branding and image", she said.

Her work ethic and that 'touch of class' that she brings has made her one of the most sought after stylist/image consultant in the land.

"One of my biggest clients has to be the wife of the Malawi High Commissioner to London. It's always exciting working on her looks for these prestigious events she has to attend. Its a constant challenge having to find that balance between sophistication, classy but still modern and youthful. With all the years I have worked with her, I have seen tremendous growth in her ability to identify great pieces and putting a whole outfit together on her own.
"I have also worked with Malawian footballer, Gabadingho Mhango currently resident in South Africa. Samantha Mogwe, (singer, song writer and radio presenter in Botswana), we are very like-minded and so it's always easy breezy working on her. Rina Da General, Rapper in Malawi and Sharon Chirwa a media personality here in Malawi. Alexina Phiri (ex-Miss Malawi UK), resident in the UK and an active women empowerment advocate through her Women's Voice Global vlog. I have also been fortunate enough to work with both local and international designers on editorial publications", she said.

Her work has afforded her the chance to interact with dignitaries, celebs and sportspersons, and to be part of all those top tier events as well but the stylist is still very much 'down to earth'. She shared with us some her most cherished moments..........

"One of the highlights of my career thus far has to be when I was appointed head stylist at Mzuzu Fashion Week, for two years I have served in this role on a voluntary basis. The opportunity to work with Gabadingho Mhango for the Airtel Top8 campaign 2017 was also another highlight in my career", said the stylist/image consultant.

Allidah's hope is to one day be in a position to give back to her people and for her, a good place to start is by creating employment.
"My long term goal is to create employment for people in my country since unemployment is a burden amongst many youth of Malawi. Later, to be able to become a full_fledged image consulting institute, to be able to train and produce quality image consultants focusing on various aspects of the art, be it corporate, interior decor, etiquette etc", said A.D Henson, as she is affectionately known to her peers.
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