Mélyne Roi Turns Designer Scraps Into One-Off Luxuries-------
Ever since she was a teenager, Mélyne Roi has had a thing about bags; she was always fashioning pretty patchworks out of a little bit of this and that. Eventually, an internship at Jitrois helped her zero in on her true passion: fine leathers and skins. Soon after, the self-taught stylist began piecing together poetic one-of-a-kind and limited-run handbags made of unwanted cuts of shagreen, crocodile, python, and other leftovers from luxury powerhouses. (You name the house, it’s a fair bet that Roi’s got the goods). A handful of directional boutiques such as Afwosh and Renhsen, in the tenth arrondissement, picked up her reasonably priced “vintage modern” satchels and pouches—some of which have antique drawer pulls as hardware. Before she knew it, Roi had developed a seriously cool following.
Last year, Roi made the leap, dropping her day job in order to create handbags full time—by hand, at home, on her own machine. She’s also recently teamed with three other up-and-coming female designers—Floriane Mothes, of Mademoiselle Flo (handmade cards and silk-screened T-shirts); Sophie Maitrot, of Ladylou (knits); and Olivia Braqueville, of L’Atelier d’Olivia (jewelry)—to open La Boutique Etoilée, a showcase for their “slow fashion” wares and philosophy, in Montmartre. And as if choosing between bobo-chic stripes and one-off colors and motifs wasn’t hard enough, just wait until her new boots hit the shelves next year.
Mélyne Roi’s handbags start at 120 euros and are available online, as well as at Le Boutique Etoilée, located at 16 Rue Durantin, 75018 Paris.