Canadian Fashion Designer Mélissa Bolduc graduated from the Fashion Business and Creative Arts program at JCI Institute in 2003. Her love of fashion started young when at seventeen she began making her own clothes. An avid figure skater, Mélissa aspired to design a line of athletic apparel for the sport: “I learned how to sew at a young age and had the idea of dressing up athletes. I enrolled at JCI because I knew this course was exactly what I needed to begin my clothing line.”
Her experience at JCI helped Mélissa realize just how much she adored fashion and design. After completing an additional course in pattern making, she moved across the country in 2005. It was in Montréal where Mélissa immersed herself in the fashion industry and eventually began her own clothing line.
Melow par Mélissa Bolduc was created in 2007 with sophisticated yet comfortable designs to suit women of all shapes and sizes. Melissa has proudly kept the line 100% Canadian and works closely with her clients on the fit of each garment. “I opened a store on St-Denis Street in Montréal which was also my workshop. I developed Melow there, a line that flatters any body shape for women.”
The connection with her customers allows Mélissa to see the fit of clothing in all shapes, and tweak her designs to fit the body perfectly: “I love to find new ways to wear clothes and being comfortable at the same time. I play a lot with fabrics in 3D. My clothes can often look odd on a hanger but as soon as you put the pieces on, it’s as if they come to life on a body.”
“The variety of womens’ body types is something I always consider when designing my collections, which I create to be versatile and accessible.”
Melow is popular with women of all ages because it features timeless and essential pieces which suit any wardrobe. Melow carries a complete line of tops, bottoms, dresses, coats, pants and more, in a full range of sizes. Organic bamboo and spandex jersey fabric from Ontario keeps the line quintessentially Canadian.
Mélissa has some advice for other fashion students who want to create their own brand: “I highly recommend that you find an internship or a job in the industry and gain experience before you begin your own line. There is a lot to know within the industry…hands on experiences are important. Experiment with making clothes for yourself and friends and become familiar with different types of fabrics.” She also stresses the significance of always working with the client in mind: “The industry is competitive and finding a share of pie can be difficult. One thing a fashion brand must do is listen to their customers and that’s how I’m able to make clothes that fit well and sell.”
“A garment should always be created to adapt to the woman’s body, not the opposite!”
A lot of hard work goes into creating a fashion brand! There are currently ten employees at Melow, with Mélissa leading the way as designer and CEO. Melow also accepts interns all year long – allowing them to gain experience in the industry and reconnecting Mélissa with her roots as a fashion student.
Fall 2017 is an exciting time for Melow, which will be reopening in Montreal with a new concept. Meanwhile, Mélissa has big plans: “Melow is selling in about seventy stores throughout Canada and is in the midst of expanding overseas and online.”
Shop: Melow par Mélissa Bolduc
Keep up with Mélissa Bolduc on Instagram
– See more at: http://www.jcinstitute.com/melissa-bolduc
Article written for John Casablancas Institute’s Blog