Crack open a tin of chocolate wafers, pop Mariah Carey’s Merry Christmas album on the nearest speakers, and throw some bubbles on ice: it’s time to get festive. To commemorate the most wonderful, chaotic and blissful time of the year, two of our favourites—Nina Metta Lee of Extra Silky salon and photographer Immy Wilson—teamed up to create the iridescent, resplendent and showstopping Extra Silky Calendar 2021.
In their words, the Extra Silky calendar is “a celebration of time, community and creativity, something to look forward to and look back on.” In our words, it’s the single greatest thing to come from 2020. Featuring a slew of sparkly local creatives and with 100% of the proceeds going to Lifeline and Sisters Inside, it’s a feel-good calendar in every sense of the word.
We got the BTS scoop on the makings of the Extra Silky Calendar 2021, which is every bit as ~extra~ as you’d expect from the dream duo. Read all about it below, then start 2021 on the most joyful note possible by pre-ordering one for yourself (and all your friends/fam) here.
Hi Immy and Nina! How are you?
Immy: Pretty good!
Nina: I am doing really well thank you, the sun is shining and I had a nice chill morning.
We love the concept for this calendar, can you tell us how it came about?
N: Thank you! Imogen approached me to work on something together at the end of last year; something that wasn’t just a normal editorial shoot. We brainstormed and came up with the idea to make a calendar, which felt really cool and right!
I: Working on more tangible items is something I’m always looking for when I’m thinking of new projects. The idea came up a while ago, and due to delays with COVID-19, we revisited the idea in 2020 and reshaped it into a bigger community project, with charities in mind to support.
What was the best part about collaborating with your creative friends?
I: Being from New Zealand, this was the first Sydney project I felt super familiar with, despite having only somewhat of a working relationship with most of the creatives. It’s been really exciting and collaborative on a community level. Also, it’s been interesting seeing how different everyone works: it’s a huge insight into how cool each individual's creative process is.
N: The best part is always having FUN. We dedicate our time and energy towards coming up with the coolest concepts. It’s really great to be together for this and making those dreams a reality.
We love that you’re donating 100% of profits to charity, can you tell us about the organisations and why you chose them?
N: When Imogen and I were concepting, it was at the height of the Black Lives Matter movement. As much as I wanted to do the project, it wasn’t in my mind to be profitable when there are so many causes to help. Did you know a third of women incarcerated are Aboriginal, despite only making up 3% of the population? I chose to donate to the Australian-based charity, Sisters Inside, which “advocates for the collective human rights of women and girls in prison, and their families, and provides services to address their individual needs.” During the time of shooting the calendar it was peak COVID-19 and I was concerned for how much everyone’s mental health was suffering, hence also selecting Lifeline.
I: Previously I had planned to move to London, but due to COVID-19, things changed and we looked at the calendar project again. As Nina said, we felt like directing something with donating in mind was important and a priority for our community right now.
What does the festive season mean to you?
I: Absolute chaos followed by either absolute bliss (or absolute chaos) depending on where I am at. This year hopefully bliss: lots of small day trips, turning my phone on silent, swims and early nights, calling friends and family. Checking in with family and friends over this time is important as everyone’s Christmas situation is different and it’s often pretty dysfunctional.
N: The festive season is always a bit of a write off as a hairdresser being the busiest time of year for us! But I think it is always a signifier of the year that has been and I always take off a couple of weeks at Christmas to relax with family and friends.
What are you most excited about for 2021?
N: To be rid of 2020! Although I don’t believe entirely in New Years resolutions, I think we all need a fresh start for sure.
I: A lot actually, most that I can’t say yet. I’m mostly excited about reuniting with my friends in New Zealand.
Best song to head into 2021 listening to?
N: Ooh! Great question, right now anything Megan the Stallion! I love her!
I: Music from home. Old tracks @peace & Eno & Dirty.
And we can’t let you go without asking… What hair trends should we know about for the year ahead?
N: I don’t tend to follow trends too much but the Extra Silky forever-trends are: shaggy layers, mullets, little random plaits, block panels of colour or all-over blonde with all sorts of colours! Basically just having a lot of fun!
I: I’m with Nina: having fun and mixing it up with tiny details! Braids, charms, little pops of colour, clips and a fresh cut more often.
Features Editor: Madeleine Woon