The model, makeup artist, entrepreneur, manager and sneakerhead shares her style
Words: Dylan Muhlenberg | Photography: Andile Phewa
As a model, makeup artist, entrepreneur, manager, sneakerhead and the founder of The Girls Guide 101, Sydney Davy sums herself up as “an upcoming Boss Lady.”
She also has enviable style and, like her Johannesburg home where we photographed her, Syd gravitates towards simple looks that complement her personality.
“I guess I’m more of a minimalist. I definitely don’t go too over the top and don’t want my outfit to overpower me in any way. I want my presence to be felt and not heard.”
For her first look, Syd put together an off-the-shoulder crop top with high-waist baggy slacks and Jack Purcells, something she'd wear to: "the type of event with good vibes, good music and good people – somewhere I’d stay the whole night.”
A good way to judge a person’s character is to look at the people they spend the most time with... so who's closest to Syd?
“That would be my best friend, Tamia; transgender princess, Luke, who taught me to be the strong, self-loving young Boss Lady I am today; Dipstreet’s Tusa, who is like an older brother guiding me through business; my boyfriend, Kalo, my other half and my whole heart; Raees, who I assist with the Rainbowtime event; and the woman who is my rock as well as my pillow, my mom Waydee.”
At the end of 2016, Syd started The Girls Guide 101, a company that incorporates her love for makeup, art and giving back. It has since branched out to include talent management and there are plans for further expansion.
“It’s been a wild ride and I’ve grown so much. It keeps me extremely busy but I’m a workaholic, so I love it.”
Otherwise, Syd keeps busy by working as a model, something that pushes her to be better, builds her confidence and, if all goes according to plan, will take her overseas. Looking at her outfit selections, Syd clearly has the ‘model off duty’ look locked down.
“The blue pants, oversized tee and blue Air Force Ones are my ‘cool guy’ look. A comfy, not really trying, but still look great kind of look. It’s super slouchy and I think it’s my favourite. I’d wear this out with friends if we were going to a place where I needed to look swagged out from daytime to early evening.”
The girl power movement means that brands are not just pushing more product to women, but listening to them and catering to their needs as well. While sneakers were previously thought of as tomboyish, they’re now an integral part of womenswear with the variety increasing with every new drop. And because workwear has evolved to a point where women no longer have to wear a pencil skirt and heels to the office, more women are putting together combos that embrace sneakers as the footwear silhouette of choice.
“Women have been in the sneaker game for years, but we weren’t recognised because of reasons that we can get into another day... It’s coming up more now, becoming more publicised and appreciated and we're seeing sneakers on the runway, on the people watching the shows, events both formal and casual, and our faves wear them too. Brands are tapping into that.”
Pushing her off on her sneakerhead journey was her dad, who would gift her a fresh pair of Converse Chuck Taylors every birthday. Nowadays she can’t imagine wearing anything else, although she’s developed quite a taste for the Swoosh.
“I can spend hours on sneaker websites searching for what to get next, although I have a love for classic Air Force Ones. I also love the Air Max LD-Zeros and my Tisci Dunks. It all depends on how you style them. ‘Girly tomboy’ is my favourite oxymoron.”
As a sample size 7 foot and friend of Nike, Syd is in the fortunate position of being seeded new drops and dresses according to whatever sneakers she feels like wearing.
“I like to plan my outfits according to how I’m feeling on that day. If I’m lazy I’ll opt for a Sock Dart or Flyknit Racer and if I’m feeling extra or adventurous I’ll go for my Swimming Pool TNs.”
“The all-white-skirt-and-shirt look worn with Chuck Taylor All Stars is inspired by Bella Hadid, my queen and idol. She’s so stylish and I try to embody her in my looks because she relates so much. I wanted this look to be clean and cute.”
With a style that’s developed from “getting dressed and thinking I look cute” to what she now describes as “stylish looks that can go from super girly to super tomboy”, Sydney’s style is forever in flux.
However, at the time of interview, she was all about beach-ready outfits.
“I will be relaxing for the first time this entire year. Getting a full night's rest sounds like a dream to me.”