Act 1: The Stage
I started out as a competitive studio dancer. I absolutely loved it! The feeling of stepping onto a stage, with your group, after months of training, knowing in your heart you are going to crush it together; was unreal.
Act 2: Raptors Life
After the studio, I auditioned for the Toronto Raptors Dance Pack and joined the team at nineteen. Dancing for the Raptors was an amazing experience. I danced for the team from 2004 - 2008, then again in 2014 when I was selected to be on the Alumni Team. Performing for a stadium of over 19,000 fans was epic. I danced at every home game, volunteered for charity events, performed at promo events, travelled to China and all over Canada representing the Toronto Raptors organization; all while being a full time student. Being an NBA Dancer was the sweetest part time job! The team helped me realize that being a multicultural women is reflective of our city and a beautiful thing. I was a fighter and ready for my next challenge.
Act 3: Education Is Power
After completing my degree at York University, I wasn't sure what to do with my BA. I attended the International Academy of Design and received my Fashion Marketing & Merchandising Diploma. I found this very helpful because I was taught by industry leaders who opened my eyes to different fields in fashion. I was most inspired by my buying teacher, I knew I wanted to design, plan assortments, learn how to manage budgets and of course travel :)
Act 4: Canadian Fashion Buyer
I started my fashion career as an Assistant Buyer and evolved to a Senior Buyer. This industry is very cut throat but I was fortunate enough to see the world representing the companies I worked for. I travelled to Europe twice a year for trend research and fashion inspiration, Las Vegas, New York and LA monthly for vendor meetings and China to hand select fabrics and work directly with vendors. After working as a buyer for a decade, I realized although I appreciated everything, I was not fulfilled and wanted more for myself.
Act 5: Yoga Retreat, Namaste!
I attended the Yoga Peace Retreat in Costa Rica and returned with a new outlook on life. Travelling alone was one of the best experiences of my life. I found peace with where I was and came back inspired and driven. I knew in my heart if I ever wanted to start my own line it had to be now. I could keep working for other amazing companies or I could make a name for myself. If you are reading this, you know what I did next!
Act 6: TENDU Active Was Born
I created Tendu Active because I will always be a dancer at heart. I love wearing athletic outfits but the fashioniesta side of me always wanted to leave heads turning regardless of what I was doing. If you have to put clothes on, I say they should say something about your personality.
Currently my friends and I take classes for fun. If we live active lifestyles, why not look great while practicing your craft? Thus Tendu Active was born, I merged my Dance background with my years of experience in the fashion industry. I am Canadian and I also wanted to help the Canadian economy grow therefore I design my line in Toronto and manufacture 70% of my line in Canada, generating the highest quality garments possible.
Act 7: & The Beat Goes On
Thank you for reading and shopping local. I hope you like our new age dance brand. Please share your photos with us by tagging @tendu_active & #teamtendu so we can celebrate and support your personal artistic journey.
Talisa A. Timla