In Focus: Simon & Ilenia
From their home in Milan, creative couple Ilenia Toma and Simon Nygard share a photo essay of the Tale Collection, inspired by the many stories from Greek mythology. A fusion between the traditional and the contemporary, the collection highlights our clean and minimalistic take on the traditional cameo hand-carving technique. Read our interview with Ilenia and Simon here.
Who is Ilenia & Simon?
Ilenia Toma: I am half French and half Italian, and was born and raised in Switzerland. I was originally a hairdresser and owned my own salon when I started the blog ilivanilli.com in 2012 and discovered the world of Instagram, influencers and street style. I also have a degree in Fashion Communication and Marketing and all my experiences have now come together in the creation of SIILENT Studio, the creative agency I have set up with my partner Simon.
Simon Nygard: I am Finnish and an artist. Already at a young age I knew I wanted to work in fashion, and when I was 18 I was discovered by a model scout and moved to Paris where I established myself as an international model. I started to assist on styling jobs and it was an eye opening experience for me to discover the world of influencing and content creation when I met Ilenia. This is what inspired us to launch SIILENT Studio, which has been such an incredible and rewarding experience so far.
We live and work together with our beloved dog Lala in Milan, a city we love and have called home in since 2017. We share a huge passion for the world of fashion and the creative process that comes with it.
Could you tell us a bit about the inspiration behind the photographs and process behind the development and the collaboration?
Our focus is to create high quality content, and we like to have a learning by doing-approach to projects which makes it feel more creative and free. We treat a collaboration as a special project where we bring in our minimal aesthetics to develop and create new concepts.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Great light, nature, a highway, the mountains, history, movies, fashion… Inspiration is everywhere. The important thing is to never shut your eyes, and to connect impressions to evolve and expand your mind and sense of new creations.
What are you working on right now?
Honestly, we wanted to work on moving from Milan to start a new chapter, but we quickly realised that the chapter “Milan” hasn’t ended yet and we have many exciting projects in the loop here.
What does your working day look like?
There is no day in our life we wouldn’t call a working day, but as long as you find your balance and routines you can fit in work and free time every day. We break up our days by taking long walks with our dog Lala and having breakfast together in the morning without checking emails first or involving work in other ways.
A discovery that you have made during lockdown?
How important routines are and how good it feels to share life with the person you love.
A movie everybody should see?
Amélie de Montmartre. It’s our favourite film and we love it because it allows you to dream for a little while.
What is your spirit animal?
Forever and always our dog Lala
Who is your favorite artist right now?
In fashion we would both agree it’s Rick Owens, and in art we both like Lucio Fontana and Mark Rothko.
Where are you dreaming about traveling to?
A dream trip would be to anywhere where we do not have to work for once and where we can finally just sit on the beach and enjoy our life. Besides that we would love to visit Tokyo, LA and Bali.
Do you have any hidden talents that we don’t know about?
We are funny - is that a talent haha?
Photo: Simon & Ilenia / Siilent Studio @siilent__studio