I met Nina from SILLY BOY STUDIO on Instagram two years back, and despite us frequenting the same cities (Paris and London) our physical paths didn’t cross until a few months ago. Nina is responsible for introducing me to the majority of my sustainably minded Parisian friends and set into motion an invisible link which helped a lost soul in a new city find purpose and people to share it with.
When I arrived in Paris, a few years before I started blogging full-time, I was unable to ‘legally work’ anywhere. My French was really bad, and the only money I could get away with earning was by selling my upcycled clutches online. One day, probably a few months after I had moved back, I got a message from a stranger (@sillyboystudio) suggesting I go visit her friend Paola (Sencha & Bourbon) at her atelier La Manufacture Onirique to see if she’d be interested in selling my bags amongst her other consciously created/curated things. Though cold calling wasn’t my forte, I gathered my courage, stamped on my shyness and biked over to nervously make myself known, and not only had my bags included in her inventory but found a friend in Paola immediately and as time moved on, many more friendships through her.
Years later, Paola decided to take a step back from the atelier and had a closing party at La Manufacture Onrique to say goodbye. When I arrived, I saw a bright-eyed, charming girl with a big smile that radiated around the room, and thought to myself, that girl has that light about her that indicates a mighty good soul within. It wasn’t until midway through the party that we got to talking, and not until midway through our conversation that I figured out who she was to me, sending me into a tumult of grateful tales of serendipity, each caused by the good her little message of guidance and encouragement had brought me.
Though I already knew of Nina’s brand SILLY BOY STUDIO at that point, I had never seen her creations in person, and a few months after our real life meeting Nina invited me to her launch to do just that. Nina creates beautiful modern garments with an old artisanal feel united under her brand SILLY BOY STUDIO, each item is designed as a classic capsule wardrobe staple, made to last a lifetime while complementing the diverse and changing curves of the female form.
The fabric for each garment is sourced from deadstock or vintage materials in France and she works with local tailors (one of whom lives about 15 minutes from me) or independent artisans to produce each piece in slow, serene and sustainable style, ensuring everyone is treated fairly in the circular cycle of her creations.
Nina is amongst a select few designers who have turned what would otherwise be amongst the 13.1 million tonnes of textile waste which is sent to the landfill each year 98% of which can be recycled or upcycled into something else