7 Questions with Colombian Designer Silvia Tcherassi
She’s the Colombian designer you need to know—and yes, she’s just opened a colorful pop-up boutique on Level 2 of Bal Harbour Shops. Well-known in Cartagena and New York, Silvia Tcherassi’s sartorial flare is making quite the statement. From working with Colombian artisans that use centuries-old weaving techniques to constructing garments with couture-inspired design, Tcherassi creates experiences that are an authentic extension of herself—which now includes her newest Bal Harbour venture.
What is one of your first memories of Bal Harbour Shops?
I remember visiting Miami with my parents when I was a little girl and Bal Harbour was an obligatory stop during our trip. I have always admired the particular charm of Bal Harbour—it’s incredibly unique.
What exciting things can we expect from the new Silvia Tcherassi Bal Harbour pop-up boutique?
As in all of our boutiques around the world, I once again get the chance to combine two of my passions: interior design and fashion. Our team has worked around-the-clock to provide visitors with the Tcherassi experience at Bal Harbour.
Clients will be able to shop our two most recent collections, Resort and Spring-Summer 2020, as well as exclusive items created especially for the pop-up. Our recent collaborations with Indian accessory designer, Ranjana Khan and our shoes with Gia Couture Firenze will also be available.
As for the décor, we aimed to create a beautiful space featuring Mid Century Italian furniture of my personal collection—these pieces have been restored especially for this location—as well as vintage accents to highlight the color palette and the silhouettes of my creations.
How would you describe the DNA of the brand and its overall style?
I like to design with a timeless frame in my mind, which is why I can often go back to designs of mine over the years and they still feel fresh and modern. A recurring concept in my aesthetic is effortless elegance and casual luxury—I feel both terms adequately describe my designs. I like it when women look feminine and polished, but not produced and I think my pieces help women achieve that natural and effortless look. I have always considered to be a woman of contrasts—on the one hand I am a classicist, but I can easily cross over and experiment with the avant-garde. As a designer, I really enjoy playing with extremes.
As a ‘pioneer of the Latin flair’, are there any favorite pieces or collections that stand out to you that encapsulate the brand’s Colombian-inspired heritage?
Colombia and the Caribbean have always been in my DNA and therefore, present in all of my collections: sometimes this influence is more palpable than other times, but it is always there. Throughout the years, I have able to infuse my collections with the magical realism of García Márquez, the indigenous Wayuu iconography and abstract concepts that define the culture, for example happiness. The Caribbean goes beyond being my reality and becomes a permanent source of inspiration for me.
As a family-run business, what would you say is most important to how you run the company?
It’s important to maintain the vision we have as a company and to pick projects that are aligned with that vision. The team must be motivated and completely committed to innovation, excellence, quality and sustainability. Our goal is to sustain permanent growth and relevance in our brand.
With roots in interior design, how do you believe that this particular skill has impacted and/or inspired the vision of your brand?
My background in interior design continues to influence all of my projects to this day— whether in fashion design, the décor in our stores or the Tcherassi hotels in Cartagena. Interior design is about defining an essence and incorporating various elements in a harmonious way. Homes and spaces should be a reflection of the person living in it and I feel that style should always be an accurate projection of the person. I approach my collections and interiors similarly: rather than thinking if something is on trend or of-the-season, I think of whether it’s timeless and effortlessly elegant.
With two gorgeous hotels in Cartagena, can you share some insight into the overall aesthetic and feel of Mansion Tcherassi and Tcherassi Hotel + Spa?
For me, it was important that both hotels strongly conveyed the Tcherassi lifestyle in their own way and the casual luxury that is attributed to the brand. As a designer, my DNA has always been very marked, and I wanted the same thing for both of these projects. We incorporated vertical gardens, an artistic interpretation of textures, a soft color palette and above all the utmost respect for history and location seamlessly blended with a contemporary vibe. The ambiance of the Mansion Tcherassi is classic and clean, but also modern. With the Tcherassi Hotel + Spa I worked alongside my good friend, Richard Mishaan to create an unexpected setting that beautifully fuses both of our perspectives. Each hotel presents its own experience, but both are very much truly reflective of our brand essence.