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Stylist Melville Sy: On Entering the Fashion Industry and Going Beyond Borders

#IamBeyondStories | Venturing into the world of fashion is rare for Chinoys, but styling celebrities, prenups, and editorials are what fashion stylist Melville Sy does for a living. 

Melville started being interested in art and fashion design way back in high school. He then decided to pursue a fashion design course in the College of Saint Benilde, School of Design and Arts. He later realized that he is more of a stylist than a designer. When asked what is the difference, Melville shares:

“Styling is when you choose clothes for people. You do styling for everything—TV shows, events, awards night, endorsements and shoots. Unlike in design where you do things from scratch, styling is you choose from a ready source in the market.”

After graduation, Melville went on to his internship with Alyanna Martinez, a stylist back then. He also did visual merchandising for brands Girbaud and UNAROSA. Melville also interned for  Pam Quiñones of Qurator Studio, a pioneering fashion styling studio in the Philippines with clients ranging from celebrities, multinational companies, brands, designers, and private individuals. He later became one of Qurator’s head stylists.

Melville shares that his chosen career is not the usual path that a Chinese-Filipino would take, as most would pursue business or management. Being the youngest in the family, Melville expressed how lucky he was to have gained his parents’ support in his career choice, despite having a bit of apprehensions at first. He shared that being the youngest also contributed to his parents being “more relaxed” with him as he chose his profession, letting him pursue a non-conventional Chinoy career. However, Melville said that he needed to work extra hard to show that he is on the right track with his chosen career.

With the hard work and dedication that he has placed into his chosen profession, Melville was able to create a name for himself in the industry, and was able to find his niche among the sea of fashion stylists in the country, making use of his roots as a Chinoy. 

This year, Melville decided to start his own studio together with his fellow stylist Maita Baello and with their creative minds, they were able to start up Studio.24c

“We offer more services like prenups, closet decluttering, cleanup, prestyle your daily wear and personal shopping,” Melville shares. “We usually don’t do this for just anyone before, only to our regular clients, but now anyone can avail of these services.”

In order to keep their business up-and-running and in order to satisfy clients, the business aims to stay current and updated with the trends and fashion forecast alongside finding the right look that will match the client’s personality or fit the client’s situation, be it being a formal event, a photoshoot, or even just a casual day out. 

“Our service is very hands-on. Our line is open 24/7 to answer the client whenever they need styling or updates,” the stylist mentions.

Melville shares that the thing he loves the most about styling is when he is able to create a look from scratch. “But of course it has to be in tune with the trends, and also to match the personality of the person you are styling. That’s where the challenge is—how to blend it all together to achieve your vision and goals in the end.”

“I am beyond the usual Chinoy as only a few would pursue fashion design and styling,” Melville contemplates, “I just have to work extra hard to prove this is where I’m supposed to be.”

Follow Studio 24c on Instagram @studio.24c to learn more about their styling services.

To hear more stories like these, tune in to CNN Philippines every Sunday at 8pm as CHiNOY TV once again presents inspiring stories from season 2 of Chinese by Blood, Filipino by Heart. With replays on Wednesdays at 8pm on CHiNOY TV’s Facebook Page and YouTube Channel, and Saturdays at 6:30pm on CNN Philippines.

Do you also have an inspiring story that goes beyond the usual norm, culture and stereotype? Share your story with the community:

#1CH1NOY #BeyondBorders #ChinesebyBloodFilipinobyHeart

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