Like many of us, Sylvia Tennant is a woman on a mission. We discovered Sylvia because of her passion to celebrate body shapes of all sizes. You may recognize Sylvia from our collaborative “morning to moonlight” project where Sylvia shares a day in her back-to-back multi-tasking life wearing See ROSE Go. Her demanding schedule could be due to her impressive CV. She is the community-minded entrepreneur and creative mind behind Zaleska Jewelry, a model and consultant for brands looking to learn from her experience. Her drive to bring further size inclusion to the industry means she is dedicated to creating content, media and of course jewelry highlighting the importance of all body sizes. This passion has landed Sylvia at the forefront of the inclusion conversation. Let’s dig in!
SRG: A one liner that would describe you is…?
A woman on a mission to create content, media, and jewelry that celebrates, represents, and includes bodies of all sizes.
SRG: When were you first conscience about your sense of creativity?
I had an easel as a child and would paint all the time, as well as play pretend in the garden with my dolls. My parents were extremely supportive of creative activities, especially if my brother and I could do them outdoors. There were many custom doll looks dreamt up during my childhood… I’m glad my mom knew how to sew! Now that I think of it, that’s probably when the creative director seed was planted. She was my doll dress factory (thanks, mom)!
SRG: I wish I could sew- That is a game changer mom skill! When do you feel the most powerful in life? And to counter that - when do you feel the most vulnerable?
I feel the most powerful when I have a strong self-care routine. Caring for my mental and physical health makes me feel so empowered! I’m most vulnerable when I’ve over-extended myself. Balance has been a beautiful and necessary lesson these past few years.
SRG: What makes jewelry such an important creative outlet for you?
I love that I can bring my sketches to life with jewelry. I grew up with a mother and lots of aunties who were consistently dripping in beautiful gemstones. We joke that I was bred to do this!
SRG: Is family what drew you to jewelry as a medium?
I studied sculpture in university and was assigned a personal exploration project. At the time, I couldn’t find any rings that fit my size 9/10 fingers, so I decided to explore wire-wrapping with vintage brooches. The rest is history!
SRG: Coming out of the pandemic, where do you think the jewelry business will go in 2022 and beyond?
I believe that there will be a heightened focus on small-batch, ethically made jewelry, and I really hope that more people join me in making size-inclusive pieces. I think the conversation surrounding gemstone mining practices is going to continue to come to light.
SRG: Top items in your closet rotation right now?
I’m the queen of a printed palazzo pant with a vintage button up, however I’ve been rotating the following pieces in and out depending on my mood:
Harly Jae light denim, Chanel Dad sandals, handmade Ora leather bag, orange-tinted aviator sunglasses, Zaleska Siren necklace, Brunette the Label sweatsuit, a great pair of high-waisted Gap jeans, silky tank tops, and a selection of vintage dresses. As the world opens up again, I’m leaning to bright colours and tailored pieces with stretch to help me feel put together.
SRG: Yes! Reflecting all the optimism of the time in your wardrobe. Ok - how about some free business advice *wink wink* You're a consultant for brands. What is the best advice for women starting a business?
You’re in charge of the energy you bring to your business. Act accordingly.
SRG: Great advice, succinct and powerful. We read a lot about failings in company culture, it truly is top down.
We are so thankful to have you as a part of our community at See ROSE Go and the impact you make in the fashion community. Is there a particular person that has made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story?
My dear friend Tracey Drake gave me the opportunity to write an accessories column for her fashion magazine while I was still in art school. I was able to develop an editorial eye through my research and it was a truly impactful time to be exploring the landscape of the industry. I then jumped to writing for the travel section of the magazine, which took me to some of the world’s most beautiful hotels and properties. Tracey saw something in me early and let me run with my ideas, and for that I’m forever grateful for her trust and guidance.
SRG: What’s next for you!?
I’ve never been much of a planner, but I’ve definitely got some travel coming up! I’d like to ring in my 33rd year in Tulum this September, and then my fiancé/business partner Roderick and I will head back to our studio in Bali this winter to work on 2022/2023 designs. I have plans to extend Zaleska ring sizes to 12’s this fall and bring in more colorful gemstones to round out this year’s collection. Modeling has taken a front seat in my life and it’s an honor to be representing a larger body size in media. In terms of a wild career goal, if anyone has a connection to Savage X Fenty, let me know!
SRG: Amazing. Thanks Sylvia - We'll be watching!