Los Angeles, California (The Hollywood Times) 5/25/2021 – Wedding season is right around the corner and this season will be as busy as ever. Whether it’s an intimate backyard gathering or a sophisticated soirée with a never ending guest list, brides and bridesmaids can count on the Parisian-made hair accessories atelier MALIONNE for their hair accessory needs.
What excites you the most about the wedding season?
Call me a hopeless romantic, but I love being in love and seeing it happen to other people. It’s love that inspired me to create pieces tailored to the style of each individual bride. I wanted to create a collection that represents the minimalism of our French style with wedding day expectations. Last year, weddings were postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic – mine included. That was when I decided to launch more accessible bridal accessories at Malionne to help women complete their looks for their unconventional wedding day. My now husband and I had a secret Zoom wedding where I designed a veil headband that we are planning to launch later this summer. When designing, I wanted something I could easily slip on and off, while having a traditional sense of the veil and its style. We are all about customizing and creating something that women love without being too traditional. My veil had white polka dots and a satin bow. When you think back to traditional clothing of women in corsets and layers upon layers of other fabric, that’s what I think of when I think of the veil. It is a tradition that can be reinvented into something more fun and easy-to-wear.
As you can see, our range isn’t just for traditional brides, but also for those who plan to have micro-weddings, our LGBTQ community, or even for a bridal shoot where veils get too uncomfortable – this becomes the easiest way to style any bride for a wedding!
MALIONNE was created around the strongest F words: Fierce & Fearless Females. Tell us about your Parisian-made hair accessories.
My great grandparents immigrated from France to Scotland in the 1840s. My heritage and dancing ballet helped bring a lot of Malionne visions to life. When I was 6 years old, I was taken to the Palais Garnier for a ballet performance that changed my life forever. Just remembering a lot of the beautiful hair accessories they wore during the performances, it inspired me to create comfortable, yet beautiful pieces that suited long-term wear. That’s because when dancing ballet you do rigorous jumps and you would need something extremely sturdy during performances that wouldn’t fall. The pieces we created have been tested on athletes to ensure they won’t slip or fall no matter what you’re doing.
Some of your styles are inspired by astrology and Shakespeare. Tell us more.
My father was a hopeless romantic (we say from his European roots). He loved Romeo & Juliet so much that he named me after the city of Verona, and I was forever inspired by Shakespeare for that very reason. Fortunately for me, I have also inherited his romanticism, which is seen in the pieces we create – from stars to lots of pearls (which represents the moon in astrology & happens to be my birthstone for June).
How are you using your platform to inspire people globally?
I’m mixed race, so I’ve always struggled with finding my identity. I was “too white” in Asian culture, or “too Asian” in Western culture. Moreover, I was brought up by an African American family during High School where I was the only Asian wherever they took me including church.
I wanted to create a brand that recognized there is something for ALL cultures, ethnicities, and hair types; we recognize everyone. I don’t yet have kids, but I hope to build a legacy they feel proud to be a part of. We never wanted to create a business just for personal gain. That is why we donate 5% of proceeds to ASPCA & have also donated our masks/turbans to help cancer patients during the pandemic. I often ask myself; “How can I inspire my future children to be a part of or learn from my experiences?” And if I want them and their children to live in a better world… I would need to first pave that path for them. I believe the ladder to success is limitless; I’m just stepping on the first several rungs for their future before they reach the top.
Share your favorites from MALIONNE.
As cliché as this may sound, I love them all because there’s a backstory behind each piece. I’ll share the ones I have the most fondest memories of and how they were created:
The Amelia Scarf Headwrap: Easily one of my favorite pieces. I say this because of its versatility. It also has an elastic that holds to the bottom of your head. This was created from my love of classical films, especially the ones of Audrey Hepburn. I wanted to make something completely different from what was on the market with an elastic and scarf so that it could hold in the hair, while mimicking the look of a bandana AND a headband. When gears started to turn, we created this new style of scarf and headband together.
The Chinese Brocade Bow: My heritage being Chinese and Scottish, has always played a big part in the design elements created. This Chinese Brocade Bow was designed as part of the Lunar New Year Collection to celebrate that part of my culture, as well as the Stop AAPI Hate movement happening. This collection sold out relatively fast, making it an extremely proud moment for the team because we spent hours figuring out what designs weren’t going to disrespect my culture, while being versatile enough for everyone of all cultures to wear.
The Femme Scrunchie: This scrunchie was a part of our “I Am Woman Collection” that we wanted to use to embrace the love of all females in different colors, shapes, & forms. From afar the pattern looks like camouflage, but close-up you can see the female forms and colors. We wanted people to interpret that in their own way in order to see the unity.
Tell us about your personal style guides and how-tos, hair accessories that can alter an appearance from a regular attire to a stylish fashion mogul for all ages!
I never thought having a lion’s mane for hair was appealing or beautiful. My now husband started calling me a lioness (which is Ma Lionne in French), then my best friend who always complimented my hair requested I start a hair accessories brand because I always managed my hair so well despite having so much of it! I always found fun ways to accessorize everyone’s hair and they always loved to see how I’d style. Soon after I designed some hair accessories, we created some fun looks through artwork as a tutorial on how to use our hair accessories – and people went crazy for them! We ended up drawing more tutorials on ways to wear scrunchies, how to wear hair scarves, a fun little reel we did for our Amelia Scarf Headwrap and many more! We just love what we do to help women style. Although many don’t realize the significance of hair accessories, it honestly changes outfits or appearances so dramatically that a suitable hair piece or style is important for different facial features! Someone like me would look best in a wide headband because I have so much hair, but a person with thinner or less hair would look the best in our Juliette Headband or something light and dainty. Link here for our art tutorials: https://malionnehair.com/pages/tutorials
For this wedding season, do you have any recommendations?
To have fun with your hair! It’s so often that women look back and see that they’ve played it safe to wish they hadn’t. It’s the time to bring it up a notch because it’s the day these women have dreamed of! If you’re wearing your hair down, put accessories in or around it to create an alternate look! If your hair is up, add some sparkle to that bun or ponytail! Creativity is the key to finding a look that works for everyone! I’ve always loved the quote “Nobody has ever achieved greatness by playing it safe” – Harry Gray, and that stands for everything. I hear a lot of women who don’t want to “do too much” to their hair on their big day because they’re afraid they’ll look back and it’s out of style or “too much”, but those are the best! When I see wedding photos of women creating an iconic look – it stands out more to me than those who didn’t try anything at all or “played it safe”. That’s why our accessories were made to allow women to have free reign. They can play around in our accessories or be able to stack the dainty headbands we have. We have a whole range of products made for all women involved to give them that extra magic on their big day.
Malionne Instagram: @malionnehair
Personal Instagram: @hiverona
YouTube Channel: @malionne