Fashion Anecdote: Melanie Buchhave
By Carla Christine Bruus Aagaard-Strube
Stylist Melanie Buchhave: Going down in style
Stylist Melanie Buchhave has a long-term love affair with the fashion industry, adding her magic to editorials and campaigns. But, we all started somewhere, and when Melanie began her career a long time ago, she would say yes to anything to get a job – even claiming to be a competent skier. Here she takes us back to an unfortunate series of events in the mountains.
“When I first started out as a stylist, I would say yes to anything to get a foot in the industry door. It’s typical of me to say yes to things before I have really considered them fully, but I am after all more aware of my limitations today. Back then, if you’d asked me if I could scuba-dive or sky-dive I would have answered in the affirmative if a gig were involved. And so when a big Danish brewery asked if I’d be able to ski downhill carrying heavy luggage on my back, the answer was a resounding yes. The task was to style a range of winter athletes for a large campaign in some mountains down south — it sounded like a rollicking romp of a trip with free-flow of beer and lots of fun. I had skied just once at sixteen, and gauged my skills as rather good, so immediately went out to borrow a snazzy two-piece ski suit. In white. Which turned out not to be practical in any way — including if I were to get lost, which was a distinct possibility.
When we arrived in the mountains and work began, I had to admit that I was completely unable to ski. And certainly couldn’t with a big bag on my back. I somehow managed to get up the slope with the ski lift, but going down everything went wrong. First I’d managed to send one of the pro snowboards off the edge due to a lack of understanding that you need to dig its edge into the snow to make it stay there. Nothing went according to plan after that either. Well, when we were done and heading down the slope again and back to our hotel, my only option was to sit on my butt the whole way down. As if that weren’t enough, the slope made at a turn towards the end, and right there was a huge puddle of mud. Even the little kids easily passed it by, but not I. I landed directly on my stomach and my no longer white (though still borrowed) ski suit was completely muddied in front of our crew, the professional skiers and snowboarders, and the other hotel guests. For the rest of the trip I had to leave it to others to get all the clothing and equipment down and take the lift, and I have never since taken part in skiing — though I have of course engaged in all sorts of other challenging campaigns.
Favourite spot in Copenhagen: “I love everything about the restaurant Italo Disco. This place has it all ÷ from great food to the best atmosphere.”
Oehlenschlægersgade 5, Copenhagen V, italodisco.dk
Copenhagen Fashion Week highlight: “I always look forward to the dinners and parties held by DANSK magazine. So much fun. Otherwise, I’m just hoping for air-conditioned show loacations.”