I met Evangeline Wilson many years ago when I was schooling in Liberia. She wasn’t my mate at all, she was about three years ahead of me.
We weren’t even friends. She was my older sister’s friend and classmate.
We probably never spoke for more than a minute at a time.
BUT, she was one of the few older students that I looked up to with respect and awe.
You see, what stood out about Evangeline was her always ‘together’ composure, her quiet confidence, her strength, her intelligence, her smartness, her flawless style, her active social alacrity, AND the fact that most other students and even teachers looked up to her too. One just couldn’t ignore the fact that her charisma rubbed off on you.
Why am I not surprised years later to discover that this same woman has become an admirable business force to reckon with?
This firecracker called Evangeline Delaney owns a thriving fashion line called Vchic designs, a Skin and hair care line called Allie-naturalz, she is an author and she is also a champion for beautiful natural hair and personal physical fitness.
What a busy lady!
Who knows, perhaps it’s because of strong, enchanting Liberian women like her that Michael Jackson sang the song ‘Liberian girl.’
Beauty, brains, creativity, depth? She’s got it all!
NEKITA: Who are you?
EVANGELINE: I am a woman of God. Grounded in his word and trusting no other avenues. I am an avid reader, a fashion designer, and a relentless business woman.
NEKITA: Describe yourself in two words.
EVANGELINE: I am a goal getter, I work hard to win at everything.
NEKITA: What’s your worst quality?
EVANGELINE: I’m a perfectionist because sometimes I spend more time on things that don’t require my time. As a result I waste time that I could have used to be more productive.
NEKITA: What do you do and what do you hope to be doing in the next 5 years?
EVANGELINE: I am a business woman running two companies – my fashion line, Vchic Designs, and my natural hair and skincare line, Allie naturalz. In the next five years I hope to open up a Fashion House where I can lend my expertise to a broader audience. I also want to start up a fashion academy where I can help young girls who are interested in learning the craft.
NEKITA: Tell us more about your two companies and products. Who do you cater for and what distinguishes you from other competitors out there?
EVANGELINE: My designs are inspired by fashion from the 1920s and 1930s but they are also embellished with a touch of modern flare. I design for the fashionable woman in all stages of her fashion journey. Though my designs are inspired by the 1920s and 1930s, they introduce a crossover between vintage and chic with a hint of Afrocentric vibe.
My second business – Allie-Naturalz is a hair and skin care line that’s made with natural ingredients. These products are carefully blended to provide exceptional benefits to your skin and hair. We take pride in our products and we promise your hair and skin will love them. My hair and skin care is for all those interested in having healthy and skin.
NEKITA: I understand that your products are currently available in the States only, where you are based. How and when can women who live abroad start enjoying your products? The demand for natural hair products in particular is growing by the day as more women of colour are going natural. Unfortunately many have no access to nourishing and replenishing quality African hair products.
EVANGELINE: I plan to start international shipping mid this year. Hopefully this will help more people get their hands on good quality African products.
NEKITA: In terms of sporting natural African hair, you have been a champion and an inspiration to many. How did you develop this passion?
EVANGELINE: It started back in 2010 when I chopped off my hair with the intention of never using any chemical on my hair going forward. I have never looked back and I enjoy working with my natural hair. It has its challenges but they are nothing I cannot manage.
NEKITA: Does keeping ‘natural Afro hair’ affect you in the workplace in America?
EVANGELINE: Keeping my natural hair does not affect me at all. I work for myself and
have my own space for work and even when I attend business meetings individuals
are intrigued with my hair.
NEKITA: What has been your major career milestone?
EVANGELINE: Having my designs shelved in a local boutique in 2016.
NEKITA: Can you tell us a bit about your birthplace Liberia and how you’ve been affected or inspired by the political and social conflicts or unrests that have occurred in Liberia over some years now? Does this drive your ambitions and make you want to excel?
EVANGELINE: I was born in Monrovia, Liberia as an only child. I grew up with no
siblings so it taught me independence at a very young age. I don’t believe the war or political scenes has much to do with my ambition and drive. I have been this way since I became aware of myself. Most of what I am doing now has been part of a dream. I work hard and I think it is
because my mother showed me from a very young age that working hard was the path journeyed for success.
“I go after what I want. I push harder when everyone else takes it slow.”
I am a high achiever and I have had that zeal since I was a kid. I have grown to understand it better now and I find ways to make it work for me.
NEKITA: So who is the woman behind three powerful businesses on the home front, and how do you balance or merge these two worlds?
EVANGELINE: I get my strength from God and my inspiration from my mother. She
is a very hard worker and nothing was impossible for her to accomplish.
If she wanted it, she worked to make it happen. She pushed me very hard growing up. She made me understand nothing of value comes easy. You must work for anything you want and with such an attitude. I have been able to apply this philosophy to running my business.
There are other vital success drivers too that I developed along my way in life –
Scheduling and will power.
Without scheduling you lose your way. In order to accomplish you tasks, you must have a well thought out system in place and it MUST include a great schedule plan.
“Will power is a muscle you must work out every day. The more you use it, the bigger and stronger it becomes.”
NEKITA: What has been your biggest accomplishment in life?
EVANGELINE: The launch of my clothing line in 2014.
NEKITA: What has been the most trying obstacle that you’ve accomplished in life?
EVANGELINE: When I obtained my degree at the University of St. Catherine. It was difficult because I had no financial support. I had to work so hard to get my BS in international business and economics. One semester I worked a full time job 40 hours a week and had to take 26 credits because I was trying to complete the course quickly as the cost of credits were going to increase by 5% the following year. I almost dropped out but I kept pushing because I wanted to complete my undergraduate degree.
I overcame all these obstacles by looking at the opportunities that lay ahead of me if I had a degree. I looked at the bigger picture which kept me engaged and focused. There were times I wanted to quit but I redirected my energy and kept thinking of all the possibilities I would have if I finished. So I kept at it.
NEKITA: What is the greatest lesson you’ve learnt in life?
EVANGELINE: “You have to go after everything you want with a relentless spirit.”
NEKITA: You published a book recently titled ‘The exceptional woman within.” Can you shed some light on this book?
EVANGELINE: Yes. It is “My First Book.” This book has been written to inspire and encourage women on the journey of developing their best qualities.
We all are uniquely made and wired with several different talents and “know-how” but we never figure out that true exceptional personality within. As a result she is never developed.
In this book I pour out my experiences and share some hardships and trials which have given me the drive and …taught me some valuable lessons that I am willing to share.
NEKITA: Which female inspires you the most?
EVANGELINE: Oprah Winfrey.
NEKITA: Everyone has a sense of fashion and personal style. What’s yours?
EVANGELINE: I live in the era of the 1920’s and 1930’s. You can call me the West African girl with an obsession for vintage fashion. Of course I add a modern flair to it with a hint of an Afrocentric vibe.
NEKITA: What is unique about you?
EVANGELINE: I don’t give up on people easily. I keep hoping that the good in them is somewhere hidden, so I keep looking and hoping that one day it will show up. As a result I stick around people even if they are not really good for me. Sad but true.
NEKITA: Tell us a secret about yourself that no other person knows.
EVANGELINE: I think everything is already out there. I do not think I have a secret. I am an open book. (Laughs)
NEKITA: Tell us in two sentences what you think of sex, love and marriage.
EVANGELINE: They should be shared between married people, love is not just the fuzzy feeling you get when you first start to date. It is deeper than that and marriage is work, no matter how much you two are in love, because there is a lot of compromising.
NEKITA: Which movie has inspired you the most?
EVANGELINE: The passion of Christ.
NEKITA: Which popular personality inspires you the most?
EVANGELINE: Beyoncé. Not because of music but because of her incredible work ethics.
NEKITA: What’s your life slogan?
EVANGELINE: “You are capable of doing anything. The sky is NO limit.”
NEKITA: If you had the power to change the world in one way what would you do?
EVANGELINE: I will give women the power all over the world, to stand up for whatever they believe is right without having to deal with men bringing down for any reason.
Look out for Evangeline’s powerful book on Amazon. Or contact her with one of the links below if you want a copy! It’s a guide to developing your best qualities and contains a lot of business and success tips for women!
Check out the remarkable Evangeline Delaney’s inspiring interview with the Liberian Woman in Business empowerment network on YouTube:
Evangeline goes by the name Vchic Des on face book – Evangeline Delaney on Twitter and Linked in.
Allie-naturalz on Instagram and YouTube.
Specially look into her YouTube channel – Allie-naturalz – if you’d like to learn a thing or two about how to maintain healthy and beautiful natural hair.
Or visit http://vchicdesigns.com/ if you want to be inspired by ‘Vintage Afrocentric’ fashion!
Or visit http://www.allie-naturalz.com/mobile/ to see her exciting all natural hair and skin products!
Look her up and be inspired to be extraordinary!