Q&A: DESIGNER TATIANA KOVYLINA
Why the former model launched her own activewear line
It’s hard to imagine a time before the activewear
-everywhere trend permeated the fashion industry, but former model Tatiana Kovylina remembers it well. In the early 2000s, the legging
, sneaker, and sweatshirt combination was the norm for models like her who spent all their time in airports and at photoshoots. Kovylina, who appeared in campaigns for Givenchy, Calvin Klein, and more, saw an opportunity: Surely, there were busy women like her looking for high-quality clothes they could wear all day. She launched her own for-women, by-women activewear line, Silou
, in 2016.
Below, the designer spoke to Furthermore about motherhood, her workout routine, and her new Resort 19 collection available at The Shop at Equinox Kensington.
Why was it important for your company to be socially responsible?
The world we live in today is defined, in my opinion, by two terms: consumerism and excess. It's important to draw the line between them. Social responsibility was one of the main foundations on which Silou was built. The clothes are produced in a sweatshop-free factory using sustainable, non-toxic materials. It’s my personal message, and it’s become our brand’s ethos. I was lucky to find a team of people who share my beliefs.
You share on your Instagram about how childbirth has affected your body. What was your journey like?
I was never one of those women who “bounced back” two weeks after they gave birth. I’ve done it three times, and not once did it take less than a year to feel somewhat back to normal. I never thought I’d get back to how I was, there’s no going back in time. I kept exercising throughout my pregnancies and worked twice as hard after giving birth. My last pregnancy was the most difficult and brought some change that may just be a part of me now, which is okay.
I wish women were more comfortable with inevitable changes and less concerned with how it looks on Instagram. I certainly own more one-piece bathing suits, as opposed to bikinis, now. Does it bother me? Not in the slightest.
You’ve walked the runway for Victoria’s Secret, and the brand has recently come under fire for its exclusivity when it comes to body types. Was it important for your brand to be inclusive?
They do like their models skinny at Victoria’s Secret. We always fit our developing designs on models of various sizes to make sure it’s flattering for all. I love that more and more brands are showing their products on women of different body types.
What are your favorite Silou pieces?
The Kate leggings
are the best-fitting leggings by far, and I love the Tatiana
unitards. I wear them with a belt and a blazer, a narrow neck scarf, and a pair of heels or with trainers and a jumper (sweater). I always get a lot of compliments.
What is your personal workout routine?
I confidently lead myself through my training sessions using all the knowledge and experience I have built over 15 years of working with personal trainers. I do my workouts outdoors with light weights, the TRX, a Pilates ring, bands, a jump rope, and fitness ball. It’s all functional training. If I’m lucky, I do that twice a week and yoga at least three times. I also love barre classes, so that’s a must biweekly as well.