Spill it! Introductions, please!
Hey, I’m Melissa (known as Missy) and I founded British outdoor clothing brand, Mistamina. I’ve lived in the US for the last three years and split my time between NYC and Georgia.
How has the global pandemic influenced the way you dress, and will that have an impact on how you merchandise future collections?
With us spending so much more time at home there has definitely been a move to more casual clothing, I’ve always been one for mixing up my style with more casual pieces so on a personal level I’ve loved that aspect. When wearing lounge wear you want it to have a bit of a luxe feel – so made with good quality fabrics or have a really flattering cut so you don’t feel too lazy! I’ve always aimed to make my clothing flattering to a woman’s body so you feel good whilst wearing it.
Since the outdoors have been such a large part of your life, do you follow professional sports? If so, what is your favorite sport or athlete?
I love tennis! I used to play professionally, I lived and trained in Florida for a few years when I was 15, so I’m a big fan of that – it was a shame not to be able to watch Wimbledon this year but I have been out on the courts myself to make up for it.
What was your quarantine go-to outfit and activity?
My go-to outfit has probably been my Paige jeans and a classic white tee, you can’t beat that combination. It’s good to layer as well as the weather can change quite a lot, so I’ll throw on one of my Rupert shirts – these are also super soft and lovely to wear. I trained at Leith’s chef school, cooking has always been a passion of mine so I have been trying out new recipes and spending a lot of time in the kitchen!
Who has influenced you most throughout your career?
My mum has always been incredibly inspiring, she has completely transformed Alnwick Castle where I grew up and made it into a real sightseeing destination in Britain. I’ve also chosen to do what I love and what I am passionate about. Mistamina came about because I saw a gap in the market for flattering, colourful clothing for women who were active and loved being outside.
Where is your favorite place to travel to and why?
At the moment, the idea of travelling anywhere is appealing! I really enjoy my time spent in Canada – I love to fish, so the idea of a cosy log cabin by a river with plenty of wild salmon is heaven.
What is the greatest challenge you have faced as a female business owner?
Sometimes it can be the initial stage of getting started that is the hardest! From setting up from scratch and finding the right suppliers to then having samples to get absolutely perfect before production. But it’s always worth it in the end! It was the same when I launched Mistamina in the US last year, the start is the busiest time but once you’re set up you can step back and enjoy it.
Can we look inside your bag right now?
It’s rare that I have a handbag, I always used to just grab my phone and purse and run out the door. Things you would usually find in my handbag would definitely include sunglasses – I have a bit of an obsession, so you’d likely find more than one pair! Lip balm of course, I also keep Elizabeth Arden 8-hour cream on me as I think it’s such a good all-rounder. Then more than likely some treats for my black Labrador, Uni.