Designer Michelle Vella-Malone is the founder and creative force behind Vella Decor, which offers a full array of design services to local residents in New York, as well as worldwide. She prides herself on being able to work with a range of budgets. Michelle enjoys meeting new clients and forming long-term relationships with them to help resolve their various design and decorating needs, as their lives and circumstances continually change.
Her first projects included the design of the pied-à-terre of a New York-based editor who works in fashion and production at French Vogue and Vogue Hommes International, and the revamping of the restaurant and pool at the Hotel Taiwana in St. Barths. She also designed the New York apartments for Wall Street executives, and also decorated their homes when they relocated to Hong Kong and Singapore. From there, she was commissioned to design numerous apartments and commercial building projects, including playrooms, roof decks, lounges and executive offices.
A desire to be both closer to her family and to pursue design consulting full-time initially motivated her relocation to New York from the West Coast. She worked at a small boutique firm in Manhattan's West Village and then was a buyer/merchandiser for a large global luxury lifestyle brand that offers a line of bohemian chic clothing, shoes, accessories, home furnishings, and bath goods. Becoming a buyer for a global industry helped facilitate her decision to start her own design business.
Michelle’s initial career path was in the entertainment industry. While attending college in California, she worked part-time at an advertising firm. She later secured a position with Paramount Studios and was eventually lured away from her studies to take on a full-time role at the studio in various positions in production and special event planning. Occasional requests for her to decorate and create atmosphere for press parties for the sets at Bel Air estates, led to a serendipitous career in design consulting.
Through these periodic assignments and word-of-mouth, people began to contact Michelle for her expertise and natural artistic talent. She often met their expectations by simply replacing or altering key pieces without having to use a huge budget or large outside design firm. As Michelle’s passion for design grew, she began attending industry seminars and events, which led to the expansion of her own library and collection of other professional design and decorating tools and accessories. She had her first taste of public and professional recognition when her first home was featured in "In Touch Magazine."
A native of Florida’s Gulf Coast, Michelle resides in Brooklyn, N.Y. with her husband, a restaurateur, and their two young sons. In addition to spending time with her family, she enjoys traveling, exploring new cultures, volunteering, and having her feet in the sand whenever possible.