Rylé Tuvierra, better known by her alter ego persona The Fierce Walker, is a perfect example of an entrepreneurial woman who has carved out her own path. Never taking no for an answer, the Barcelona-based Asian Arab businesswoman overcomes the obstacles that the fashion industry puts in front of her with strength, from language barriers to people who try to prevent her from achieving her goals. The curator, whose vision is built on circularity, inclusivity and digital fashion, often attends European fashion weeks. Besides having a lot to contribute when it comes to the future of the industry, she is the founder of The Fierce Walker Lab agency and has her own brand, Baby Drama workwear.
We speak with her to know more about her lifestyle, the path she has travelled to get where she is, and her plans for the medium and short term. And we exclusively present these photos starring The Fierce Walker shot by Laura Martinova.
I would like to start by asking you about the name by which many know you and by which you introduce yourself on Instagram, The Fierce Walker. When did it arise and why did you choose this pseudonym?
Media wasn’t new for me as I came from a celebrity and political family background in the Philippines. And I always wanted to have a screen name, and at a young age, I knew that I wanted to be Rylé Tuvierra. It started in 2014. I was working and living in Dubai, (United Arab Emirates), back then when bloggers and the Instagram era are booming and they were using unique social media handles to call themselves. The Fierce Walker came from two different parts which are personal to me. Fierce came into an idea because I always loved watching America’s Next Top Model by Tyra Banks and I love how she struts a pose and says “fierce” with full confidence with a different aura. Walker because my late father loves to drink Johnny Walker and I feel like having two different brand personalities. It is a flawless execution of words to create a strong brand name that speaks on my alter ego persona as The Fierce Walker.
Are Rylé and The Fierce Walker the same person, do they complement each other, or are they two very different facets of your personality?
They are different. Rylé is the introvert version of me. I get overwhelmed easily in such big groups or huge crowds. She is sweet, open-minded, subtle, observant, bubbly and loves to be in nature. The Fierce Walker is the extrovert side of me when I am in front of the camera, working and in character to showcase my talent and skills. She is more strategic, outspoken, strong and a chess game master in life. They have two commonalities, being fierce and having a heart with genuine intention in whatever they do. A combo that speaks on its own when someone sees me or I have a comfortable conversation with.
You are the founder of The Fierce Walker Lab, an agency which “enhances brands through creativity by cultivating strong relationships with the community,” as we read in the platform's manifesto. How did this project come about and what exactly does it consist of?
It started while I was finishing my degree course at Bau University in Poblenou. It was my final project to showcase expansion as a brand and creator. I used to work for a creative design agency in Dubai. Working with brands such as Charlotte Tilbury, Cartier, Pret a Manger, Costa, and many more. Creating strategies and communication plans for brands. This is where it all started and I wanted to have something of my own aside from my personal branding as a curator. I go beyond the normal client approach, I build a community by giving them options depending on their budget and brand criteria. Most of my clients are outside of Spain and this is why my agency is unique on its own. We cater to brands that have a similar brand value and positioning to us. Focusing on inclusivity and circularity, championing talents all over the world to be on board with some of the best brands. This is where we inject our community approach by including everyone and using creativity as a tool to communicate our strategies and projects to align with both sides. I have five people working with me at the moment and the rest are contributors and freelancers. Mainly in the United Kingdom and France is where we have most of our clients, and this is the reason why I come often to Paris and London for work.
And what do you mean when you talk about community?
Community is about championing yourself and others inclusively in a healthy space that supports one another having a common goal. People who see you as you are despite anything around you but what you can contribute on the table with other people that share the same values as you.
Full look BOLAÑO, sunglasses and shoes BALENCIAGA.
You also created Baby Drama workwear, could you tell us more about this initiative and what you offer through it?
Baby Drama workwear are wearable uniforms made from Circulose. It is a new material made by recycling cotton from worn-out clothes and production waste. It is a niche brand with fashion circularity. A brand I always wanted to have especially working in the fashion tech and circular economy. A brand that will revolutionise how you wear your uniforms anywhere you go with confidence and the right fitting. We will also be offering accessories that are made from a sustainable material that you can wear on different occasions.
We see three terms that are repeated in your social media: circularity, inclusivity and digital fashion. How do you combine all these concepts and ways of understanding reality in your work?
They are my personal brand values and so does the brands I own. I partner with such institutions, factories, and people in the sustainability industry to help me achieve a circular fashion with my products, materials, logistics and packaging. We will be hiring inclusive talents no matter who they are and what they are with a proper fair wage. As we move forward in the digital age, we will be having strategic partnerships with start-up companies that deliver smart and advanced solutions for digitalizing fashion. Soon you can wear Baby Drama through your fingertips anywhere you go while knowing the Digital ID and lifecycle of the products where it was sourced. I learned my lessons well from partnering with such talents, and it costs me a lot of stress and problems that now I am making a lot of changes and boundaries with people around me. I don’t just champion an inclusive, conscious and tech fashion; I make sure that I live up to it in everything that I do.
Are these the pillars on which your vision of fashion is built?
Yes, I partner and collaborate with brands, designers, talents and institutions who have the same pillars as me. This is how I will curate the shoots, creatives and places I work with in order to make me comfortable working on any project. My moral compass will always be there on any projects I will tap into. It builds the character and integrity I have in the industry as a fashion curator and entrepreneur. This is my way of inspiring young talents and inspiring curators who want to enter the industry and make a name for themselves.
Now we accompany you to events, fashion shows and important conferences through Instagram. But tell us, how did it all start?
It all started in Dubai. I used to work for Marriam Mossalli, one of the most influential voices in the Middle East and North Africa region. She is the founder and owner of Niche Arabia, a luxury consulting company in Jeddah (Saudi Arabia). Marriam taught me a lot of things in the business, career, personal life and how to always be professional no matter what. I can see that nowadays, the way I deal with my clients is the way how Marriam prepared me to become one. I am grateful for her support and for opening doors for me to attend her events in Dubai and London. She is my mentor and like my mom, and I am trained by the best. From being the assistant of Marriam, I started getting to know the people and movers of the industry. From then, I started creating a name for myself and slay events under The Fierce Walker. When I moved to Barcelona, many people there helped me to be invited to such events and important moments that I am truly grateful for. They know who they are and I am happy to have them on this journey of my career. Now that we are back to normal programming after the pandemic, my schedule for travelling and projects outside the country has tripled. That’s why I hired two fierce ladies who help me execute my plans. I visit Casa Olea for my nails session every 2 weeks to make sure my nails are on point as they are my favourite accessory. I go to Soho House Barcelona or The Hoxton to have meetings and a quick catch-up on the rooftop with friends in the city.
Full look KOROBEYNIKOV, earrings ANDRES GALLARDO, belt DIOR.
Has it been difficult to get to where you are now?
Honestly, yes. It is more difficult than you think it is. I am a one-woman show. I like to plan and reach goals all the time. Strategic with flawless execution is always my mantra when it comes to my career, but I am grateful to have the support of industry trailblazers, movers and shakers that never fails to give me opportunities to rise on my own and bring the slay down to every project that I do. Being an Asian Arab and a different kind of woman it was hard to navigate the industry, but I am always been persistent and goal-oriented. I always try and ask for help. No is never an answer for me, I always find a way or the right person to speak to. It's all hard work and being good at what I do that brought me where I am now and will bring me closer to my dreams to have the proper representation in the mainstream media and fashion industry.
What have been the main obstacles you’ve found?
People thought that media and the fashion industry is inclusive and open. It’s not for a global citizen like me who lives in different places and travels a lot. It is hard to navigate such industries in different places mainly the fashion industry. Everyone knows everyone and there are industry gatekeepers who will not let you in no matter what you do. But there are also opportunities and people who will open doors for you that will allow you to showcase yourself and prove that you are worthy of the spot to be included. Sometimes you also find language barriers, especially living in Spain and being new to the country. It is hard for me to navigate sometimes such people, agencies and events. I am grateful because there are people who are mentioning my name on such projects and opportunities that will help me and my career to grow and evolve. They know who they are and I am happy to call Spain home. Also, Paris is my second home where I come often for work and fashion weeks. I have many friends and networks that believe in my capabilities which makes all the obstacles worth it. I always think that whatever is meant for me will never pass me by. And for things and people that are not meant for me, they are a protection to keep me on things that align with my values and morals.
And how is a day in your life? I'm sure that each day is completely different, but do you follow any routine?
My daily life is different depending on which month and day. Usually, I wake up with a face mask, check my phone and drink three glasses of cold lemon water to help my organs perform well. I wash my face and make my coffee (café con leche to be exact with cacao powder) and check my emails while preparing my breakfast. Usually from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm, I am receiving packages/online meetings with my team, and from 12:00 pm I start my usual face-to-face meetings, brunch with friends or I am having a shoot in the studio. Nowadays, I am in my workroom making sure the pieces for Baby Drama will be on point and well executed, meeting my suppliers and dealing with the logistics team. When it is fashion month, I am usually out of the country for a month while my team are working on my logistics and schedules while on Facetime with me. I don’t share much of my days on my socials, I keep them all curated. I enjoy having my privacy and having quality time on whatever I do. Only a window of my life is what I show on social media. I am selected by the people I surround myself with even part of my job is to deal with people whether on social media or outside.
Who do you look up to and why?
I truly adore Giovanna Engelbert, who is the current Creative Director of Swarovski. She is a woman of substance, class, beauty and creativity. She is bold and extra with her looks but she also has something special to contribute. I adore women and people who go after their dreams and know how to move with elegance. Being subtle is the key and strategic to approach this move which is rarely mastered by few. Having a public image and private life with a proper balance is what I like about her. She knows when to peak and when to dress up well.
Dress MATERIEL, earrings NINO SEPO.
And the message you tell yourself every morning?
Rise and shine, fierce! It’s time to slay. A new day to be grateful and be happy in life. I always keep it simple because you never know what is going to happen throughout the day, anything is possible.
Do you have a battle cry?
When I was starting out I cried a lot. And almost every day I am crying from the rejections of the industry and brands, but it helped me a lot to build the character and tenacity I am holding now. Being The Fierce Walker takes a lot of effort, strategic positioning and a global approach. I am not just a character or brand. It is beyond what you think, it is like a case study of building a strong image with proper educational background and years of experience in different facets of life. The experience of living in Asia, the Middle East, the UK and now Spain has empowered the name with different challenges and journeys that I can be proud of as a blueprint for others, most especially with my community. The battle cry that I use as a weapon to flourish myself personally and professionally to deliver a flourish execution on whatever projects that I do.
Now we’re presenting the photos you star in, shot by Laura Martinova. What would you highlight from this shooting and what did you want to express through it?
Strength, power, tenacity and pure hard work. I want to show an image of a modern Filipina creating a name for herself on the global fashion stage to represent her community and country with pure intention and a story that will inspire others to fight for their dreams. A woman who never gave up on whatever challenges and trials she faced in life whether it was a lesson or a trial to challenge her character. And lastly, a daughter who wants to make her parents proud of being the woman she is becoming in places that captures her heart with genuine purpose to live and soar high.
And the last question, what are your plans for the next month? And for the next two years?
Anything is possible. Making Baby Drama and The Fierce Walker Lab is a global brand catering to everyone that seeks creativity, a quality eye for details, empowered feelings and a journey. A journey that will inspire many that if you have a dream, always make it happen. Dream big as much as you can. I always want to focus on having my own family and building a good life for my future children that will make them proud and excited about the future. I also want to work with more upcoming designers, brands, and creatives that have a purpose and vision. People who will inspire others just the way that I do.
Full look CARLA LAZARO, earrings and necklace ANDRES GALLARDO.
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