Fernanda Medina, founder and creative director of independent jewelry brand, Syd + Pia NYC started jewelry back in college. Initially, she was studying fashion illustration at FIT and then Parsons School of Design.
While at Parsons, she took a tour of the jewelry department, where she became enamored by the process of creating 3D pieces as opposed to a flat sketch. She got genuine gratification from the possibilities of using her hands and heavy work tools to build pieces that were not only jewelry but also house objects; therefore, she immediately switched departments.
She took off to start a family which is where the name Syd + Pia came from. The name is a combination of her first born, Sydney and Pia is her youngest daughter, Saffia. Saffia was difficult for Sydney to pronounce as a child so she started calling her Pia.
AMer college, Fernanda landed a corporate position in jewelry design, designing flat on paper. She discovered her confidence and value when she noticed that her sketches were never edited by any higher-ups and were selling really well in the companies’ market.
Through it all, Fernanda always found to build with her hands, creating personal handcrafted jewelry pieces on her workdays off. Many of her friends wanted to buy the pieces she wore on any given day. Fernanda realized, between the success in her corporate position and the feedback she received for her own pieces…that this was her calling to launch Syd + Pia. It started as something that Fernanda love as a business prac/ce that she equally adores being a part of.
“I’m designing jewelry that offers bold statements effortlessly” Fernanda stated. The critical part of Syd + Pia is maintaining the craftsmanship at a high level yet keeping an affordable high end price point. In general, the pieces are metal driven and possess a sleek finish. The brand uses affordable materials that feel luxurious and special like brass plated in 1 micron of gold, sterling silver and bronze accented with gold filled chains or sterling silver chains and her favorite component to work with, genuine pearls in all shapes and sizes.
With the designs, Fernanda is always thinking of ways to redefine classic silhouettes by incorpora/ng different elements. For example, the hoop earring is con/nuously getting a new interpretation in Syd + Pia. Fernanda is a traditionalist in her craM and jewelry silhouettes in some sense in her designs, yet she dares to modernize and redefine it. Fernanda thinks that’s what makes a Syd + Pia piece so unique. To con/nually redefine classic silhouettes but daring to make them bold. She thinks that’s what makes the pieces universal for many kinds of consumers.
In the process, Fernanda always starts with, “would I wear it?” It then expands to the people that are following the brand. she feels the people following the brand are in a way like her. “We’re people passionate about standing out, and we invest in ourselves. We do this by investing in luxury and unique items without spending thousands. We care about upping the ante in our wardrobe. We also care about responsible fashion by shopping and supporting local independent brands.”
In a way, it’s a New York story. To dare to be passionate about our hustles and dreams in a luxurious, confident, and stylish way.
Syd + Pia has been featured at Henri Bendel in New York, W Stylelab at the W Hotel Time Square, December Thieves in Boston and Flock GiM, a specialty boutique in Austin, TX. The brand has had the pleasure of being featured in many publications and television, including but not limited to High Maintenance, series on HBO, Vogue IT, Harper’s Bazaar USA, Elle Vietnam, Elle Canada, Elle USA, Nylon, LadyGunn, Instyle USA, L’Officiel, Raine Magazine, El Diario NY newspaper, WOR Radio 710 AM, Joan Hamburg’s Bridal Show, the Dominican newspaper El Caribe and many more online and paper publications.