Fashion

The fashion illustrator who captures all our life struggles

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Anna Brech
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Jamel Saliba combines high-fashion whimsy with a dash of hilarious realism

In a world where we’re often bombarded with unrealistic images, fashion illustrator Jamel Saliba brings a much-needed dose of irreverence into the mix.

The Boston-based artist began posting her sketches of modern women on Instagram in 2013, as a means of escaping a day job that was grinding her down.

Fast-forward to present day and Melsy’s Illustrations now has over 100,000 followers, with fans including Sarah Jessica Parker.

It’s also given Saliba a route out of the corporate career she hated, as she built up a business that is now worth over £500,000 through brand partnerships, pop-up exhibitions and a wildly successful Etsy store

“It doesn’t really feel like a job because it’s become my life now, and it’s a way of life,” Saliba tells Entreprenuer.com in a new interview. “Every single day is different.”

Saliba’s illustrations are particularly unique in the way that they combine a high-fashion aesthetic with a tongue-in-cheek nod to the struggles of everyday life.

So, moments such as bingeing on chips, working out to wine or face-planting a stack of pancakes are brought to live with chic, Vanity Fair-style detailing.

The result is both hilarious and beautiful, making for on-point illustrations that really strike a chord.

There’s a touch of aspiration in there, too, but not so much so that it feels inaccessible (who wouldn’t want a Chanel embossed surfboard?).

The inane is made elegant and vice versa, all captured in a series of frame-worthy prints. Here are just a few of our favourites:

Images: Melsy’s Illustrations/ Instagram

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Anna Brech

Anna Brech is a freelance journalist and former editor for stylist.co.uk. Her six-year stint on the site saw her develop a vociferous appetite for live Analytics, feminist opinion and good-quality gin in roughly equal measure. She enjoys writing across all areas of women’s lifestyle content but has a soft spot for books and escapist travel content.

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