Author Archives: Christine

Posted on September 11th, 2013 in Home page (right column),In The Know | Leave a Comment

What drives you? What is your passion? When one comes to realize the very thing that brings them their greatest joy, they will far exceed their own expectations of fulfillment. For me, it’s designing! 🙂 For those of you who have followed me on Facebook, you have an idea of what has driven me over the past year. I have lived a pretty insane life, but one that has brought me my greatest joys, challenges, and growth as a designer and as a student.

Yes, for those who may have forgotten, I am still a teenager…at 16! Getting my driving license was a HUGE milestone! 🙂 Along, with those normal teenage things came my academics. Mine have been atypical…after all, why would I have it any other way?! This past year I not only renovated my studio, focused on designing and debuted casual wear, but I also completed my sophomore & junior years of high school! Again, when one is driven by their passion they can accomplish most anything.

The school year of 2012-2013 was an insane focus on academics and creating a studio space that could be a place to let my creative work soar. Renovation work was so inspiring and yet another way to have a creative outlet. It all came in the form of custom designed lighting, furniture, display finishes,

and a space to accommodate my need for a multipurpose studio. Not only do I design in it,

but it’s functionally designed for production and events. My collections will hit the runway right in my studio with a 90+ foot runway!  Because I have taken the time to carefully lay it out to serve my design needs in many ways, it truly has become a studio space that I can make it all happen in.

April 2013 found me opening the studio for by appointment only.

It works great for my insane schedule of design and academics. For me to have a space that I can organize my work and meet with clients has been helpful beyond words. It has freed my mind to create and study.

So, back to the academics. While most students were getting out of school for summer break, summer found me continuing on with my schoolwork. Yes, it was an insane summer and challenged me to the extreme! However, the reward at the end…one week before school started back…to officially be a senior!!!!…that was a moment that I’ll never forget! All the late nights, pushing the keyboard to overheating levels from paper after paper and more…I DID IT and I would not change one bit of it for anything!!! Challenging, absolutely! Insane, you bet! But, the sense of accomplishment to complete a monumental goal in the midst of growing a business in the direction you want it to go has been priceless!

My days are now filled with academics again…Senior year is awesome!…and I am enjoying the full senior experience by being at Girl’s Preparatory School.

My amazing "Rat" being the "Cat" (mentor for my 6th grader)

They are also filled with designing my next collection, planning window displays (first one coming soon!!!), photo shoots,

NYC fabric shopping trips,

My favorite lady in NYC - Ms. Jay!


meeting with clients and all the things that I love about designing.

Soaking up inspiration every chance I could get along the way was critical to my creativity.

Monet at the MoMA


Insane for some…for me…all inspiring and fulfilling! 🙂

I can’t wait to get my next collection on the runway for you to see and bring you inside my world of design for my first studio open house. The place that this past year has brought me, on so many levels, leaves me speechless, humbled, and thankful to my team of support that surround me everyday

with words of encouragement, never ending cheer-leading, and so much more. You each know who you are and I would not be here today looking back on all that has happened in my life without you…especially this past year. Love you all!

More to come!!!


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Posted on July 5th, 2012 in In The Know | Leave a Comment

Wow! A lot has been happening since May and I am excited to show you the progress of the future home for Designs By Malsye. I have been busy, busy, busy with the studio, art projects and more awesome things to come! So, please enjoy the sneak peek pictures that tell the story of what I’ve been up to for the past month.









Electrical work 🙂


New lights, new look…


Message board creation for to do lists 🙂


Fun colors for making old to new!


All this work needs lots of helpers & I have the best peeps in the world!!! Awesome friends!!!!


Help extraordinaire!


Shopping local…making old new again!




We have tools & know how to use them! 🙂


Who says teens can’t get things done! Speaking of doing things, a big focus lately has been on the creation of ART 4 A CAUSE. This is the art studio part of my designing that is making use of all those scraps that I just couldn’t throw out! I have been having a blast creating original works of art with all the proceeds going to the charities I support. This past week I had my first silent auction thanks to Miss Myra Brown Dooley & her Role Models Camp. It was incredible for these works of art auctioned to the highest bidder with all proceeds going to SHOCKS CAUSE. This is direct support for the Chattanooga Community Kitchen and I’m thrilled to bring further support for this great cause. Myra’s Role Models will be having a silent auction every week through July. Thanks to those who have already supported Art 4 A CAUSE! Here are some pics of my behind the scenes work to create these original pieces.


Art in Motion


Dress art


Word Art


Can’t wait to share with you soon what is ahead! More good things happening…will share soon!!! Stay tuned. 🙂





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Posted on May 14th, 2012 in Behind The Designer,Home page (right column),In The Know | Leave a Comment

I’ve dreamed many dreams & have seen many of them coming true. Last week it happened again. On the day of my 15th year in this world I postponed a most momentous event in the life of a teenager so, that I could finalize the next step in my journey as a designer. Getting your drivers permit is like turning 21 when your turning 15, or that’s what I imagine it to be like. So, instead of sitting for my permit test on the BIG day, I chose to sit at a desk and make one of the most awesome decisions of my design career.

It was a dream coming true to write out a Designs By Malyse check to secure a new home for Designs By Malyse. Yes, you read this right!!! DBM will be in our own designing location to better meet the needs of our clients and provide you with even more Designs By Malyse goodness. My home studio was overflowing with dresses, fabric, and all the fabulous things that go along with being a designer…my dad will be thrilled to have “his garage” back! I have so much to be thankful for. 🙂 DBM will make our new home in downtown Chattanooga.


A blank canvas ready to be created!

Watch for the complete progress of this incredible design space as we work to get it perfect for your custom designing & more. Can’t wait to reveal my vision for Designs By Malyse with you by early fall!!! Lots of great things ahead!!!!



Posted in Behind The Designer, Home page (right column), In The Know | 3 Comments

Posted on April 30th, 2012 in Behind The Designer,Home page (right column) | Leave a Comment

May Day preparations begin long before the last week of April. For me, it all started last fall when I was asked to design a May Day dress. I was thrilled with the opportunity to design a gown for this much anticipated event at my school – Girl’s Preparatory School. This is a day for the seniors to be presented in their finest colorful gowns and for the entire school & community to recognize this milestone in their lives.

The center lawn filled with family, friends & special guests

My designing was in full swing from November on…meetings to connect with my clients…design sketching…more meetings to select a design…and you get the idea. It is a process that takes time to perfect a design that reflects the one wearing it.

While my work on the first gown was underway, I got the opportunity of a lifetime…designing the May Queen gown! A moment that left me speechless and honored to design for one of the most gracious, humble and talented ladies I know – Miss Rachel Kelly. I first met Rachel when she gave her chapel talk in the fall of 2011. We had never met prior to this, although I knew who she was from being a fellow GPS girl. For her chapel talk she sang a song that she wrote and recorded – Yet Rejoice. It was so moving that I went up to her afterwards and introduced myself. I shared with her how touched I was by her talent that she had shared & wished her well in her pursuit of furthering it. Once I found out in early 2012 that Rachel had been chosen by her peers to be the May Queen, I sent her a congratulatory email. From that I found myself grateful and humbled to be designing this very special gown for her.

Needless to say my experience designing for Rachel has been amazing. She is a close friend now and we have a connection that will be life long. I am so proud of who she is and all that I know she will be as she shares her talent to make a difference in the lives of others. Look for her and her singing group, As Issac, as they perform at Riverbend, June 12 for Faith & Family night. Go to iTunes and download her song & group CD – they are awesome & share an incredible message that will move you.

With the May Queen gown completed, I spent some time with her for a photo shoot prior to May Day. Thank you to Jackie Jones Photography for capturing Rachel & her gown beautifully.



This gown was about the details and that included the 19′ train. Rachel was glowing in it…& now on to May Day.

What a beautiful day it was to celebrate May Day! The weather was sunny with a perfectly gentle breeze. As the seniors walked down the sidewalk to the stairs that descended to the lush green lawn, anticipation was in the air. Seeing the array of colorful gowns was breathtaking. Miss Finley Bandy was the first to be presented and she was beautiful in her lime green Designs By Malyse gown. It was a privileged to have Finley wearing one of my designs. We had a great time getting to know each other & we are going to miss you Finley on our basketball team!!

Miss Finley Bandy

A fabulous day it was!

Me watching it all

The Queen & her court

A truly amazing day! Lots to catch you up on. More blog posts coming…to keep up daily visit me on Facebook.

Photo credits: Jackie Jones Photography



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Posted on March 2nd, 2012 in Behind The Designer | Leave a Comment

It’s so interesting how each week is so different. After getting back from NY I’ve been busy organizing ideas, materials purchased and you get the picture. In addition to all that, I have been busy working on studies so I can work on more of my work. 🙂 Yes, for all those wondering, my days are not all about chilling out and letting those creative juices flow. First it’s this

Geometry 🙂

and then it’s



and let the inspirations come.

I had the wonderful opportunity this week to spend time with someone who has been such an inspiration to me in more ways then she knows. We met face to face for the first time this week and it was like we had always known each other. I am blessed to have great ladies in my life that are powerful life mentors. I have come to believe that I am being surrounded by many angels. They are there to lift me when I need it, carry me when my legs are heavy, speak words that touch my soul and protect me when walls are trying to fall. It’s amazing! I am learning to listen to words of wisdom, share myself in ways that I can touch others while pursuing my dreams and take in all this goodness that surrounds me. This is one incredible journey!

During this meeting, this incredible lady shared a most amazing book with me. She hadn’t intended on giving it to me, but during the course of our conversation it spoke to her heart that she needed to give it to me. Wow, is all I can say! This book is so awesome that I read it in 12 hours…cover to cover! I recommend it to everyone:


Simply life changing! Sooooo inspiring!

Somethings that I’ve been trying to figure out came into focus this week. This led to a change of course for a few things and a green light for others. It’s pretty amazing to see things come together in such ways .

In the midst of all this I was in awe of new life and the preciousness of small things. Meet Bryce Michael:

My 2nd cousin. He is so cute and the calmest baby I think I’ve ever seen. Born 2/28/12. Love him!

Thursday was a good day this week too. I had the opportunity to go hear an amazing artist speak about her work and inspiration. It was at Hunter Happens and the artist was Karen LaMonte. She was phenomenal to hear.

These are her words that spoke to me:

  • When my mind fills with inspiration and new things that I’ve learned, I feel it will burst if I don’t let it out creatively
  • I have OCD – I strive for perfection, but have learned to highlight imperfections in a beautiful way

When I personally spoke with her this is what she shared:

  • It’s great to not always know exactly what you are doing, because you can have fun with what you are doing and you create the rules
  • Often your creative mistakes become the most beautiful works of art
  • Fashion designing is so much about sculpting & this is what brings the design to life – great that you already understand that

I have to say that Karen was inspirational because of her incredible work, but also because of her personal repoire. She was very approachable and eager to share her experiences, both good and bad, to truly reflect on her art. To say that when a piece has a flaw and she has learned to highlight them (literally) because it represents our humanism was so refreshing. I soaked up all she spoke about.

At the end of her comments she was asked the question as to whether she goes through a period of lowness when a piece breaks & she has to start over. I loved her response.

“No, I just have a moment of I can’t believe that just happened and I pick up the pieces and work on putting them back together in a beautiful way. I don’t let depression set in & keep me down over it happening. I just get up & move on.”

Great words to live by I think. Positive spirit. When seeing the images of her work & seeing her piece at the Hunter,

they radiate a light that is awe inspiring. This can be said in her work and her words. What a light she was to me…she spoke to me powerfully.

Thank you to Laney and her adorable boys, Joseph & Polk, for sharing this great artist with me.

Joseph with me & The Glass Dress

The Glass Dress is Polk’s favorite piece of art when he visits the Hunter (But I’m with Joseph in the pic who also likes art). He knows it well. And, I have to wonder if his child’s eye sees something in it that many may miss…the light.

As I look back over my week, I have had a lot of light shining on me this week. 🙂 As the sun was shining at my house, I watched the awful storms hit Ooltewah…I am thankful for protection and prayers are with those affected by the storm.


Talk to you all soon!





Posted in Behind The Designer | 1 Comment