“I am honored that Nolcha Shows invited me to participate in their New York Fashion week event as an emerging designer to watch. I launched Riley Versa this year, so it is a fantastic opportunity to introduce the brand to the fashion community.”
Melissa grew up in New York City, where her passion for fashion was fueled from a young age. She explored the fashion industry, working in fashion PR and interning at Saks Fifth Avenue and Condé Nast’s W Magazine before leaving the city to attend The University of Pennsylvania. After graduating, Melissa spent two-and-a-half years working for Edelman Berland, a global market research firm, before founding Riley Versa in late 2015. No matter where life has taken her, Melissa has always held firm to her New York roots – and the belief that the only rule in fashion is that there are no rules at all.
On a weekend trip to Miami, Melissa found herself stuck with a brightly printed clutch that she packed in a moment of pre-beach excitement. She didn’t realize that it clashed with the rest of her suitcase, which contained prints, textures, and colors that demanded a solid bag counterpart. Melissa had an “a-ha” moment, and realized she probably wasn’t the only woman who would appreciate owning a single bag capable of multiple looks. In this moment of clarity, Riley Versa was born.
Riley Versa is where luxury and convenience intersect. It’s perfect for the jet-setter; the woman who travels for work or pleasure and cannot pack multiple bags, but can pack multiple covers; the woman who wants to transition her look from a day at the office to a night on the town; or as the ultimate accessory for any woman who likes to change her style with her mood. Riley Versa’s streamlined approach saves valuable suitcase, closet and drawer space – covers are infinitely easier to store than bags!
Riley Versa also spares you the hassle of transferring the contents of your bag when switching purses. Women no longer have to worry about leaving a credit card in one bag, and a lip-gloss in another; with Riley Versa bags, they can leave all of their belongings in one bag, and simply swap the cover for an entirely new, versa-tile look.
There is no signature style and that is so what is so exciting about Riley Versa. The brand was created to give women the flexibility to have fun with fashion and express themselves. It eliminates the fear of trying something new because it’s “not practical” to buy a bag in a certain color or pattern.
My grandmother. She is the ultimate fashionista and really fostered my love of fashion from a young age. She also taught me to see the beauty in everything, and is an unwavering support system.
Live Freely. Live Luxuriously. Live Riley Versa.
IF YOU COULD DRESS ANY CELEBRITY WHO WOULD IT BE AND WHY?
Alicia Vikander. She is always dressed fabulously, but in a way that looks effortless and chic.