Bright, bold and yet minimal - ‘Malie is a brand new womenswear label that’s sure to become a wardrobe favourite among us all. Founded by husband-wife duo Amalie Othilia Brandi Mikkelsen and Karandeep Singh Chadha, who met while studying at Parsons School of Design in New York, the New Delhi based label is a confluence of Danish and Indian cultures in the best sense. Think Scandi-style meets India’s colour flex.
If you follow #CPHFW on Instagram, imagine those sleek, sober, well put together outfits - but with a burst of Indian influence. “The Indian aspect comes into play with the rich colour palette, which can easily be detected in our collection – from handblock print, to ikats, to embroideries,” explains Mikkelsen.
While ‘Malie might be the new kid on the block being launched a mere two months ago, it’s already being recognised for the refreshing USP it offers - the simplicity and practicality of Danish silhouettes melded with the complexity and intricacies of Indian design.
We catch up with Amalie Mikkelsen, one half of the designer duo to get the tea on the origins of the new label, life in India, and a peek into her daily routine. Turns out, her life is after all the inspiration behind the label.
Early bird or night owl?
I am not a natural early riser, although I sincerely wish I was! I wake up around 8 am and get my morning workout done. I prefer getting my workout done in the morning as I usually work late.
The secret to great skin is…
A serum and hydrating moisturizer.
Morning must have?
After moving to India last year, my morning cuppa is no longer a coffee, but a large glass of coconut water.
If you had to pick: tea or coffee?
I love both! Coffee is a morning thing for me, I love taking the time to make a French press where I add freshly crushed cardamom pods to it which gives an amazing aroma. Tea, I have in the evening.
For inspiration, you look to...
Traveling and experiencing new creative spaces - museums, fabric makers, shops. Online through cinema and music. In the current times, it can feel a little more two dimensional of course, but luckily there’s so much inspiration out there online.
Hacks for keeping well in tough times
Breaking a sweat every day helps me immensely. Trying out new recipes and using cooking as a stress reliever – I even started making sourdough along with everyone else on Instagram. Filling hearts and stomachs with deliciousness is something most of us can relate to as a kind of therapy during these times.
Your first brush with fashion
My parents started a womenswear brand when I was little, which developed into a European retail business, so I have in a sense grown up with fashion.
Did you always know this was your calling?
I studied Design Management, but I was able to develop my drawing skills during this time and create the first collection for ‘Malie. I didn’t truly see myself as creative and I never imagined I would be designing for my own label one day. But the pandemic made me look inwards in a new way and instead of investing in a designer I decided to give it a try myself.
The 'Malie woman is…
Modern, active, and leads a life where comfort and style are equally important.
You’re from Copenhagen, you went to university in New York, and Paris during college. You have an apartment in London and you now live in Delhi. How do you feel when you go back home every now and then?
It feels weird to come back and everyone suddenly speaks your own language around you.
Things to love about Copenhagen
It’s a small town, very organized, and if the weather is good you feel almost guilty if you are not out and enjoying it! We bike around everywhere and have a very different work-life balance.
Playing dress up in Delhi versus Denmark
The climate really comes into play. In Denmark I need coats of various thicknesses - for fall, spring and winter. I must admit there’s not much need for overcoats and boots in Delhi! I actually like getting dressed for a warmer climate, it makes outfits more simple. In Copenhagen, Paris and New York, I would walk a lot and that always meant wearing shoes for walking. I don’t need to consider that here in Delhi so I can wear some not-so-practical shoes with no regrets.
Your personal style mantra
I would say I personally reflect the vision of ‘Malie: statement dressing with the aspect of wearability. I love colours, statement sleeves and interesting details, but there has to be an aspect of comfort for me to wear it on an everyday basis.
My Toteme jeans, Bottega Veneta accessories, and I keep a little collection of Hermes silk scarves in various colours.
You favourite part of the day is
I love a nice evening, with good food and a glass of wine with my loved ones.
Chill o’ clock begins when
I cook dinner while listening to podcasts or music to let my mind take a break. I also love watching a good show or movie on my couch.
I have a special herbal sleep tea that I’ll have an hour or so before going to bed.
Shop the brand here.