As the first quarter of the new year draws to a close, we are excited to take this opportunity to introduce you to the creative mind behind our interview series: The Mella Edit.

Hi Mella! Can you tell our readers a little bit more about you? 

Hello there! I'm Melanie, though most friends and family know me as Mella. I'm 43 years old and call Cologne, Germany home. Currently, I'm on the exciting journey of launching my own marketing and communications business, which led me to collaborate with BASK late last year.

Self Portrait, The Mella Edit

How important is an active lifestyle to you and what does it look like?

My activity levels tend to follow the seasons quite closely. I have been practicing Yoga for over 20 years and also take Barre lessons several times a week. That means a lot of my exercise routine centers around the comfort of a mat. During the summer months, I add swimming, cycling, and running to the mix, but I struggle to maintain these outdoor activities during the winter due to not being fond of gym environments. However, I feel like my fitness habits naturally align with each season, allowing me to adapt and thrive accordingly.

Practicing with Barre Evolution in France, 2023

Who or what do you consider to support this? 

One of the driving forces behind my decision to pursue self-employment was experiencing redundancy from a job that had granted me a considerable amount of freedom and flexibility. While exploring new job opportunities, I realised I was not willing to compromise on these aspects for a new employer. In fact, it made me long for even more autonomy: the ability to tailor my work schedule to my energy levels, whether on a daily, monthly, or yearly basis. That's why I decided to take a leap of faith and try to create a work environment for myself that aligns with my idea of balance and fulfillment.

Image by Karina Homilius

What is your earliest vacation memory and why?

I grew up in East Germany during the 1980s and 1990s, a time when we were separated from the rest of the world by the Iron Curtain. Traveling west was restricted, so many of our family vacations were spent closer to home, either at the Baltic Sea in northern Germany or at Hungary's Lake Balaton. The trips to Hungary provided some of my earliest experiences with foreign cultures, from trying new foods to navigating different currencies and languages. One memory that has become a cherished family joke involves a moment captured on camera at the lake: my sister, my cousin, and I innocently entering a changing room naked, only to emerge a few minutes later in our swimsuits. We were trying to copy the adults but missed the mark entirely, much to the amusement of our family.

What is your dream holiday destination. Any recommendations you would like to share?

There is a particular place in Greece that I really want to visit: Firopótamos. I have seen so many dreamy pictures of the quaint fishing houses right by the ocean and really hope I get to see it one day.

As far as recommendations go, I have a deep love for Portuguese countryside and culture. 


Portuguese Village photographed by The Mella Edit

What are your favourite places to bask in the sun?

The Portuguese beaches are at the top of my list. There are many 'secret beaches' that can only be accessed during low tide and are usually unknown to tourists.

Sitting at an empty beach and watching and listening to the waves is my idea of heaven.


Image by The Mella Edit

How do you approach sun protection, do you have any recommendations?

I am slightly obsessed with skincare, so SPF is a top priority for me. In Europe, we have some exceptionally good and effective brands, with the French particularly renowned for their expertise in this area. La Roche-Posay and Avène are my go-to brands for sunscreen protection.

Wearing the Iluka set in Portugal

How do you choose styles to be active and out in the sun?

I personally adore versatile pieces—items that seamlessly transition between various environments and functions. For example, if a swimsuit can double as a bodysuit or serve as a camisole for a barre class, it instantly becomes desirable to me. This versatility also justifies a higher price tag in my eyes.

What is more important to you - functionality or style?

As I've grown older, I've definitely found functionality becoming more important to me, although I'm still selective about compromising on style. For instance, I simply can't bring myself to buy a puffer coat for winter. It seems like there's an army of black puffer coats on the streets of Germany for about six months of the year, and I just can't see myself blending in. Instead, I prefer layering up under a wool coat.

How would you describe your own body image, which parts do you like to show off most?

I can honestly say that I have never been more content with my body than I am right now, despite the mounting wrinkles and the occasional pain in my right shoulder. While I used to fixate on my 'Panda Eyes' a lot, ever since my nephew was born with the same puffy eyes, my sister affectionately called him 'Little Mella.' This nickname helped me embrace and accept my own features.

I enjoy showing off my arms because they are long and lean, and my dedication to Yoga and Barre classes helps keep them defined. While I used to worry about whether my bum looked big in certain outfits, that's no longer the case - thanks to JLo and the Kardashians.

Self Portrait, The Mella Edit

What gives you confidence in your daily life?

For me, confidence is a blend of past experiences and a sense of curiosity and play. I've found that the latter often proves that things unfold in ways that complement my journey, even if those ways are different from what I initially expected.

Who are the people in your life that inspire your confidence?

I find it inspiring how the younger generations are often at the forefront of addressing issues that my generation chose to keep quiet about. Many of the strides in the mental health and female empowerment movements can be credited to them in my opinion. I am lucky to have a number of them in my circle of friends or in the work environment.

Any advice you would give your younger self?

There is a place in this world for exactly this version of you and every version that is to come.

Young Mella (right) and her sister

How important is sustainability to you, how do you incorporate it into your life?

Sustainability is very big on my agenda. I try to live as eco-friendly as possible. I predominantly either shop second-hand or from sustainable labels and actually want to focus my business on clients in this field.

What is your favourite piece from the BASK line and why?

The Aline One Piece has my heart. It's so elegant, yet practical. I loved showing it off on the paddle board last summer.

 Wearing the Aline One piece in Portugal

The Mella Edit is a brand partner emphasising style, sustainability, and well-being. Committed to conscious communication, it strengthens brand identity with a positive impact on the world.