If art is an extension of its creator, it’s not surprising that an ethos of natural sensuality and feminine strength appears to inspire the coveted pieces of wearable art by Sydney jewellery label, ManiaMania.
One half of ManiaMania is Tamila Purvis, the inherently lovely jewellery designer and stylist who launched the label with close friend and former RUSSH magazine colleague, Melanie Kamsler, in 2009. Ever since, the distinctive crystal-accented adornments have gathered an unimpeachable flock of devoted brand advocates like Cara Delevingne, Alexa Chung, Devendra Banhart and Julia Restoin Roitfeld.
Tamila’s career in fashion has been an evolution that started with original aspirations of becoming a fashion photographer.
“Pictures by Corinne Day and Mario Sorrenti from The Face were all over my bedroom walls and filed as inspiration in a school diary,” she tells us. “From there it was studying Visual Communications at university and assisting a few photographers, but it wasn’t long before I realised it was the stylist that was creating the story I wanted to tell.”
From her jewellery creations and styling work to the incredible envy-inducing vinyl collection at the home she shares with partner Campbell Milligan and baby Coda, it’s clear that Tamila’s spiritual home lies somewhere in the heady New Age epoch and psychedelic rock and roll apogee of the 1960s and ‘70s.
This is also made plain in the seasonal muses-of-choice for ManiaMania’s collections; previous references include such influential touchstones of rock ‘n’ roll style as David Bowie, Stevie Nicks to Anita Pallenberg.
As for her approach to personal style, Tamila describes it as “relaxed and easy, a little on the vintage side, sometimes a 70s influence, always a 90s reference. I’m always stealing my boyfriend’s clothes or else I wear a vintage dress with jewellery.” And needless to say, she’s not short on killer accessory options.
Her love of crystals, for example, would come as no surprise to dedicated fans of ManiaMania. “They’re just beautiful!” she exclaims when we ask her about the appeal. “The formations, the colours, the fact they’re created by the earth and each one holds its own vibration… I love how they all have their own qualities.”
Generally, when it comes to beauty, make-up and health, Tamila is all about au naturel.
“I’ve always been into natural products because I have really sensitive skin,” she explains, “but I began to realise how important it was when I was pregnant… everything absorbs into your system. I also kiss and snuggle my baby boy so much and his skin is so delicate, it needs to be okay for him too.”
Her self-described signature beauty look is simply “healthy skin” and says any kind of set beauty routine “has become all about time and effectiveness! No indulgent time spent pampering in the bathroom these days.”
Tamila carries that serene, balanced tenor of someone who is doing exactly what they should be, so the quote she shared by American mythologist, Joseph Campbell, could not be more fitting: The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.
Photographed by Rudy Zverina.
Words by Susannah Tucker.