Meet Terezia Prazska, the founder of the caring, simple and authentic brand Silly Silas. If you’ve ever dreamed of starting a company of your own, you will find a lot of inspiration in this interview. Terezia also gives us a teaser about an upcoming product.
How did the idea for Silly Silas come around?
It all started when my son Elias was born and my mom gave me a pair of traditional Czech tights with braces. I fell instantly in love with how nostalgic, adorable and practical they were, it was honestly a love at first sight. I learnt from my parents that they used to be very popular when they were kids (in former Czechoslovakia) but then they already went out of style when I was a baby. I felt it was such a pity that this ingenious clothing item from the past was not worn by more kids around the world and dreamt to change it.
Can you describe the moment when you realised that this is what I’m meant to do?
When I launched Silly Silas webshop, I was still on maternity leave and worked every night until late to put it all together. Once it was all finally ready and we went online, I had literally no expectations or hopes. The fashion industry was completely new for me and I didn’t know anything about it. I was (and I still am:) just a mom with the deepest love for our tights that I wanted to share with other moms. And then suddenly the phone started to buzz with orders coming in and I will never forget the feeling of surprise, excitement and happiness.
After a few days I started to receive pictures from customers showing their happy little ones in our tights. And that was the moment when I realized this is what I would absolutely love to do, what fills me with so much joy. At that same moment I also decided to not go back to my full-time job after the maternity leave was over, and rather dedicate all my time to Silly Silas.
“I was (and I still am:) just a mom with the deepest love for our tights that I wanted to share with other moms.”
Who are the people behind the brand?
It is me, Terezia Prazska, who started the journey and is now responsible for the overall strategy, production, distribution and marketing.
I am so happy that from January this year my husband Antonio Aguilar joined me as well, even though he has been supporting me with everything from the very first day. He is responsible for the online sales and content creation.
In May 2020 our friend Nuria Seivane joined us taking on the logistics role including the packing of all the lovely orders we receive. We are doing at the moment everything by ourselves and the days are busy and quick but we have so much fun together.
Where do you find inspiration? What inspired the latest collection?
The simple answer would be ‘the past’. When the whole idea of Silly Silas came to my mind, I spent hours going through the old pictures of my parents and all the old magazines I could find. I wanted to make sure we bring the authentic retro feeling combined with a look of the modern world we live in, mixing traditional designs and craftsmanship with contemporary colours.
This remains the key inspiration for all our collections but our mission is to constantly bring new (unexpected) ways to innovate such a traditional product as tights used to be. We launched our footless tights in February and shorty tights in May. And another new product is coming at the end of October.
“And another new product is coming at the end of October.”
Let’s talk about the production and your work with sustainability.
We believe that care and safekeeping are essential. Down the production and environmental impact of our products.
Our tights are manufactured in a small production in Czech Republic from where the tradition comes from. The expertise is often formed over the lifetimes of the employees there and each piece is treated with care mirrored in the outstanding quality. Similar productions are sadly vanishing and this beautiful craft is now very rare. This has been one of the absolute key drivers of Silly Silas from the beginning – helping to preserve this precious tradition no matter the cost and support the local craft and production.
Just like in the past, our tights are meant to stand the test of time.
The sizes are adapted to fit for a long period of time (range 1 year e.g. 1-2y size) and the tights sort of grow with the little ones fitting them even longer.
We use natural materials and certify our products by OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 at the Class 1 level, the most rigorous certification designed specifically for newborns through toddlers up to the age of three.
And I think one of the small not so visible details we do is that we ship most of the orders to our retailers in used carton boxes giving them a second life. It started when we were shopping and saw how many carton boxes were going to be thrown away after just one use. Since then we teamed up with a number of places that save for us boxes that we can further reuse. It is time consuming and it is a small thing but that’s where the change starts.
Competition Time! Compete to win one of two pair of Silly Silas tights. We have a pair in Olive (size 1-2 yrs) and a pair of footless tights in Cinnamon (size 2-3 yrs). We would like to know which of our brands you would like to know better. E-mail your favorite brand together with which pair you’d like to win to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will contact the winners by e-mail. The competition is open until Sunday the 25:th of October 2020 at 15:00 (CEST). Good luck!
Who’s the typical Silly Silas customer?
I think Silly Silas customer is someone who loves style while staying comfortable and wants the same feeling for their kids. We have already received many requests for grown-up products with a desire to have something so comfy for parents too. 🙂
What’s on your work desk?
It is actually only my computer, notebook and pen at the moment. We have a packing table where we also look on the samples and plan the collections. But as we are just at the beginning, our working space is very small so in order to fit in with all the boxes coming in and out, we try to keep our work desks simple and clean.
What are your favorite Silly Silas styles?
It is our Light Brown tights in any of the executions – footed, footless or shorty. This is the most authentic colour from the past, the one I remember from my parents’ pictures and I consider it to be one of our signature ones. This is why you see it across all the collections and will continue seeing it in the next ones to come. It has also been the first colour samples my sons were testing so it has the nostalgic feeling for me.
Describe Silly Silas using three words!
Caring, simple and authentic!