Rev up your summer wardrobe with colorful, sexy-chic threads from style guru Silvia Tcherassi’s Allegra Collection.
Eternally cool and eclectic, designer Silvia Tcherassi possesses an unmistakable magic touch, merging chic silhouettes with fresh combos and playful prints in her eponymous line. “I design for a global woman with a young spirit,” Tcherassi says. “A confident woman who appreciates quality and design, and who definitively is a trendsetter, not a follower.”
Originality and poise are not only characteristic of the brand’s clientele, but of the designer as well. Widely considered one of the most innovative and impressive talents to emerge from the ranks of Latin American fashion designers in recent years, Tcherassi’s cheerful, offbeat prêt-à-porter collections are adored locally and internationally, conquering overseas markets and showing on major runways in fashion capitals such as Paris and Milan. Her style has been defined by the Italian Dizionario della Moda as “eccentrically eclectic” and her distinct designs described as having “the delicateness of a ballet dancer, yet at the same time, the strength of a rock star.”
Tcherassi began her career as an interior designer, but her versatility and thirst for innovation sparked the creation of her own clothing label. “I discovered the creative possibilities of applied art through interior design, but a quest for new artistic expressions and a stay in Europe led me to the world of fashion,” she explains. “I began by creating garments that I sold in a small boutique in my hometown of Barranquilla [Colombia]; this became the springboard for my new career. These pieces were made of cotton, and then I went on to make dresses with layers of colors, contrasts and fluid silhouettes, which rapidly turned into Colombian fashion classics. I rediscovered architectonic concepts through simple lines and a profuse geometry of design that revealed the skin in the most daring way, transforming transparent fabrics into a weapon of seduction.”
And that’s exactly where the allure of her clothing lies—in its ability to seduce. It’s rare to have the power to charm and change, but great design, like Tcherassi’s, can. Since then, the designer has reinvented the brand season after season, restructuring silhouettes and using materials and colors that entice and enchant.
With ready-to-wear and bridal collections under her belt, Tcherassi has two storefronts in Coral Gables, an atelier on Ponce de Leon Blvd. and a boutique at the Village of Merrick Park, and she is always looking to broaden her horizons. Expanding her vision beyond fashion, a few years back she announced the launch of the Tcherassi Hotel Collection—“my first brand extension that will translate my concepts into the design of spaces and the creation of experiences,” is how she described it. “Becoming the first Latin American designer to join the tendency toward fashion hotels, I decided Cartagena de Indias would be the perfect home for the first project of this collection.” The first Tcherassi Hotel + Spa will open its doors this summer in Colombia.
With all these flourishing endeavors, it’s amazing that Tcherassi still finds time to do the other things she truly enjoys: cooking, writing and spending quality time with her family in her new hometown of Key Biscayne. Silvia Tcherassi, Village of Merrick Park, 350 San Lorenzo Ave. #2140, Coral Gables; silviatcherassi.com.
5 Questions for Silvia Tcherassi:
1: Where do you get your inspiration?
Inspiration comes from everywhere: photos, art, books, landscapes or concepts as happiness or casual elegance. From Frida Kahlo to Evita, from Barcelona to Forte dei Marmi, my collections reflect my singular point of view about people and places. Fabrics—not drawings—are the starting point of my creative process.
2: How would you best describe your collection?
Allegra, my Spring/Summer 09 collection, is an artistic exercise about color. I combine a great variety of materials, including fabrics, wood and plastic. It’s totally young, urban and fresh but a little retro at the same time.
3: How do you want your customers to feel when wearing your designs?
I hope that each woman feels that she is the queen of the night because of herself not because of my dress. For me, the dress cannot be the main attraction, but the woman who wears it can.
4: What one piece of advice would you pass on to aspiring designers and entrepreneurs?
The three keys to success in this business are: a unique and singular vision, discipline, and management.
5: Who do you admire in the fashion design world?
I admire a lot of fellow designers: Miuccia Prada for her artistic, philosophical and even political approach to fashion. As a Latina, Oscar de la Renta and Carolina Herrera are permanent points of reference. Armani is a master, and Valentino, after his retirement, is more visible than ever. Nicholas Ghesquière [of Balenciaga] and Alexander McQueen are very creative, too.