Alexx Ekubo (born Alex Ekubo-Okwaraeke; 10 April 1986) is a Nigerian actor and model. He was first runner up at the 2010 Mr Nigeria contest. Alexx won the Best Actor in a Supporting Role award at the 2013 Best of Nollywood Awards for his role in Weekend Getaway.
Ekubo is a native of Arochukwu, Abia State. He attended the Federal Government College Daura, Katsina State. He studied Law at the University of Calabar, bagged a diploma in Mass Communication from Calabar Polytechnic and is presently studying for a second degree in Theatre Arts from the University of Calabar.
He had his first major role in a movie titled (Sinners in the House) ,produced by Lancelot Oduwa Omaseun in the year 2000. See photos below.
Alex with Nolywood screen diva Genevieve Nnaji at the African Magic Choice Awards.
ThE experience of working with Elie Saab has influenced designer Sandra Mansour in both subtle and more obvious ways. Her choice of diaphanous fabrics and delicate embroidery bears the mark of Beirut’s most famous fashion son, but time spent working in his atelier also inspired her to set up her own workshop in the city.
“Working with Elie Saab was a life-changing experience because it showed me all the facets of the profession,” Mansour told us. “I received first-hand experience with fabrics, textiles, embroidery ornamentation, prints and cuts – and it allowed me to transfer my art into prints on fabric and create my drawings of embroidery on patterns. The creativity; the team spirit; the haute couture client relationship; the fashion shows experience: all those aspects were enlightening and gave me the confidence to launch myself.”
SANDRA MANSOUR – AUTUMN/WINTER 2015-16
Born and raised in Switzerland and educated at Beaux Arts, Geneva, and later Istituto Marangoni in Paris, Mansour now produces her ready-to-wear and and bridal lines in Lebanon. Drawing on her time with Saab, the designer translated the colours and rich embroidery of the region to create her own signature style – and already boasts stockists across the Middle East.
ADVERTISING “Opening a boutique in the coming five years is one of my objectives,” the designer added. “I plan to branch out into various product lines, and am currently working on tailor-made bridal gowns and am considering creating a capsule bridal line. On another hand, I am also developing a collection of accessories including handbags, shoes and jewellery. Moreover, we’re expanding in terms of points of sale, especially in the UK and the US.”
MULBERRY chairman Godfrey Davisasserted today that the company is “looking forward with some optimism” ahead of the arrival of new creative director Johnny Coca at the brand on July 8. Although still relatively grim reading – with profits before tax down to just £1.9 million from £14 million in 2014 – the figures have taken a turn for the better in recent months (retail sales rising 10 per cent in the 10 weeks up to June 6), and Davis is sure that is set to continue.
“There are no surprises in these figures,” Davis told us as the figures were released this morning. “We updated the market in April and if anything current trading figures are a welcome surprise. The strategy we’ve adopted is working, and our core UK customer is responding, with business much improved in the second half, and even more so in the last quarter.”
What Will Céline’s Wonder Boy Do For Mulberry? What Will Céline’s Wonder Boy Do For Mulberry?
Johnny Coca The shift in strategy, implemented in the earlier part of the year, involved increasing the leather goods offering under £1000 – and looking at that product carefully. Gone are sombre colours and bags priced in the thousands, replaced by a return to the old Mulberry spirit of accessibility and fun.
ADVERTISING “From a fashion perspective, we’ve had to be more creative,” Davis explained, “with more colour; bags that are more cheerful and interesting. We’ve fine-tuned the product offering and become more disciplined, with a focus on bestsellers. We realised we needed to populate the collection in the under-£1,000 area, because we realised we had lost sight of the fashion and lifestyle element of the brand, so we’ve addressed that. Last year, we had nearly 60 per cent of the collection at the higher pricepoint, so customers were being bombarded by the more expensive bags when they looked at the website or came into a store, even though the lower-priced bags were there. Now we’ve increased the under-£1,000 offering to more like 70 per cent, and by spring/summer 2016, there will be 80 per cent.”
Although Coca doesn’t start his role for almost a month, Davis is confident that the team will work well together, revealing that he, Coca, and new CEO Thierry Andretta have spent some time together for a “settling in period” and that during the interview process, they focused on “checking out that they were all on the same page”.
Hiring an accessories designer has caused many in the industry to speculate that the label’s ready-to-wear – once a focus of growth for the company – will fall by the wayside, giving way to the leather goods which account for “90 per cent of the group’s sales”. Not so, says Andretta.
“The future of Mulberry will be international growth,” Andretta told us, “and to succeed in international expansion you cannot be a category brand. Shoes and ready-to-wear are crucial, and must be completely aligned in terms of aesthetic as well as pricing. With ready-to-wear it is important to be able to express ourselves, but it’s too early to say whether this will mean a catwalk show. We’ll take time to get things right.”
ALBER ELBAZ, like the rest of us, has a guilty pleasure and – despite living in Paris and helming a major fashion house, Lanvin, for the last 15 years – it seems his secret behaviour is no different from the rest of us.
“Morocco is a country that I love. People don’t have water in their houses, but they have satellites so they can watch The Kardashians,” he said of his native land, WWD reports. “After work, I’m watching the Kardashians and ordering pizza.”
But far from being a fan from afar, Elbaz is actually a friend of Kim’s he revealed: “I think she’s a true, nice person. She wore Lanvin for her firstVogue cover. She’s a role model. She’s a smart girl,” adding of Kardashian’s stepfather, Caitlyn Jenner, who recently transitioned to become a woman, “I’m happy that someone who has a dream made it come true.”
Yves Saint Laurent, who reportedly groomed Alber Elbaz to take over at his house before it was sold to the Gucci Group
Picture credit: PA
Speaking to Alina Cho at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the designer was characteristically candid on several topics – from stylists who can’t make up their mind what their clients should wear: “The stylist says, ‘She loves to show this part of her body, but she needs it to be covered,’ or ‘she likes pastels but looks better in bright colours,'” to his mother’s wish for him that he never fulfilled: “She said, ‘There’s only one thing that would make me happy. If you got married’. I married in my own way. We’ve been together for 22 years,” he said, referring to boyfriend Alex Koo.
Elbaz also spoke openly about being considered for the creative director’s role at Gucci, before Tom Ford was appointed, and then being dismissed from designing Yves Saint Laurent’s Rive Gauche line only to be replaced by Ford.
“After spending one month with the [YSL] archives, I said, ‘What can I do,’ because [Saint Laurent] had done it all. I told my psychologist, ‘I’m depressed. Saint Laurent was depressed.’ She asked if I was a jealous person. I’m not. I’m a little jealous when people eat and don’t gain weight,” he said, revealing that he decided to stop delving into the archives. “I understand why he created what he did and I understood his customers. Three years later when I was fired, I felt like a widow. I thought I didn’t want to do fashion. I considered becoming a doctor, but I’m a hypochondriac.”
“Knowing what I have in front of me and the potential of the brand, that’s what I find most exciting,” said the designer about his favourite aspect of the job. “It’s a great house and there are lots of opportunities there. It’s also opened lots of things up to me and I can explore new areas that I’ve never been able to touch upon in my career previously.”
The designer, who was made creative director in October last year shortly before de la Renta’s death, was last night welcomed to London at the brand’s store on Mount Street. And it was nice to return to what he still considers home.
“I’ve been in Paris for over 20 years so I’m used to being outside of England but coming back here is very special for me. Someone asked where home is for me now and I do somehow still see England as being home and also one day would love to be back here, but I think it has to be New York,” he said. And to make that distinction from London, Paris and New York, the Paris apartment is sold to “make that cut and commitment”.
What are his favourite things, then, about his new NYC home?
“I like the positive energy there. They make things easy for you, you can get things delivered, you can get dry cleaning super fast. It’s very nice to live somewhere where service is important,” he pointed out.