Achol Yak has always had an interest in the fashion industry from a young age and always picked fashion-related subjects while in school to learn how to stitch and improve her skills in design.
In 2015, she was fortunate enough to join Evelyn College of design based in Kenya where she learned to hone her stitching skills but also learn more basic fashion courses such as the design process, drafting, stitching, sketching, design history and more.
In 2018, she founded her fashion brand ChuAk which is a high-end fashion brand that blends glam, punk, art, and crafts all with an African touch reflecting her personality and various sources of her inspiration.
She showcased her first collection in a local Kenyan fashion show called Brads Fashion Week which led to a feature in Asian Weekly magazine and a television interview with KUTV.
All this further helped expose her to the wider Southern Sudanese community and went on to win Best designer of the year 2018 award.
In 2019, she was part of the Mitreeki fashion incubator by the International Trade Centre [ITC] which enabled her to interact with other designers from Kenya and Ethiopia, helping her further increase her knowledge of the fashion industry.
What drives her to keep going?
Achol views fashion as her lifestyle, her personality is reflected through her designs. Fashion is her way of interpreting her thought process to the world. It is also a journey of self-discovery that enables her to test her creativity and explore possibilities to be an influential person in the industry and inspire the next generation of fashion designers.
What mark does she want her work to leave?
Achol wants her brand to reflect high-end African fashion couture because she wants her work to showcase the richness of Africa culture. She wants to design statement pieces that are worthy of being good enough to be in an art or fashion museum to represent the best of African creativity.
See the full list of 21 African Women Channeling New Narratives In The Creative Industry.
Lorna is a 2016 YALI Mandela Washington Fellow.