HEALTH chats with the Founder and CEO of Melijoe Nathalie Christen- Genty about her internationally renowned children’s e-commerce site that brings together the best of children’s fashion on one platform.
Launched in 2007, Melijoe is a Paris-based e-commerce site that presents and sells the best of children’s fashions (with international delivery). We have a signature style and a French point of view, and we showcase inspirations and trends through made-to-measure content (newsletters, magazine) and expert styling.
I had my first child in 2003, and when I went shopping for my son, I was disappointed with most of the in-store selections. At the time, there were no destination sites for children’s shopping, so we launched Melijoe with just a handful of brands that I loved. Right away, I began to realize how rich the children’s fashion world is, with strong brands, great style, and adult-fashion inspirations. In order to inspire other parents, I focused on creating really unique content. Before I knew it, Melijoe became the online go-to for kids’ fashions. Today, we feature over one hundred of the best brands in children’s fashions, in nine languages.
When Melijoe first launched, I bought only what I liked. Then, the site grew so fast we began buying more and more — our offer grew deeper, but also wider in scope. We stocked new brands even if they weren’t exactly our biggest favorites. But for the past two seasons, we’ve circled right back to our DNA: We stock fashions that reflect our style and point of view, because that’s what our customers appreciate most. Otherwise, it’s a matter of opportunity but above all, of who we meet, for example for the worldwide exclusive launch of the Karl Lagerfeld Kids collection, which premiered on Melijoe last November. For my team and me, it’s not really a challenge; we’re doing what we love.
I skim two fashion newsletters every morning (fashionmag and Business of Fashion) and I get daily news from sites like Net-à-Porter, MyTheresa and Matches. I also find lots of inspiration on décor sites and feeds; I can spend hours surfing those sites. For the rest: I don’t really have a lot of spare time and I’m not very active on social media.
We also follow brand trends. We work with a major trend bureau in Paris, and we’re always analyzing adult fashion trends at the same time as children’s trends, which are becoming stronger and stronger. Then we relay what we see and love in our magazine and newsletters. For this summer, we published some major trend features in our magazine, including a travelbased theme, a geek theme, and a beach lounge chair theme. It’s really a new way of looking at children’s fashion.
The Dubai Scene
Dubai and the Middle East in general have shown very strong growth on Melijoe in the past year. We naturally draw a steady and high-quality audience of mothers who spend a lot of time surfing on Melijoe and reading our magazine. Orders have really taken off, so we have spent a lot of time on Dubai in terms of service and of accessibility. The site has now been entirely translated into Arabic and we’ve optimized means of payment and delivery as much as possible (deliveries are customs and taxinclusive). Soon, we’ll be able to offer customer service in Arabic. We also follow the Middle Eastern calendar closely; we’re working on a special project on Melijoe.com for Ramadan, for example. But we haven’t altered our offer or our style because I think our point of view is what mothers love about Melijoe.
To give you an idea, you will find capes again for children, tartan, puffed sleeves, flounces and material effects, the come-back of velvet also. visit: www.melijoe.com