Accessories queen Lele Sadoughi talks face masks and fall trends

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If you have an Instagram account, there’s a good chance that you’ve seen a Lele Sadoughi headband or accessory come across your feed. From influencers donning her popular designs at fashion week to fans clamoring for her new bejeweled fabric face masks, Sadoughi’s preppy and ornate pieces seem to be everywhere these days.

Known primarily for her knotted pearl-embellished headbands, Lisa “Lele” Sadoughi started out her very fashionable career designing jewelry for brands like Neiman Marcus, Anthropologie and Tory Burch before founding her eponymous brand in 2012.

Shop: Pearl Woven Headband, $150

Credit: Lele Sadoughi

Sadoughi now designs so much more than just costume jewelry and attention-grabbing headbands. From purses and belts to sunglasses and hats, shoppers will be able to find something available in almost every accessory category imaginable. We’re not talking simple, run-of-the-mill designs over here. Sadoughi is a master of using different materials and textures to keep her product offerings fresh — think acetate earrings, neoprene headbands and velvet sun visors for starters.

Plus, new designs and details always seem to be rolling out and changing with the seasons, so fashion-lovers can rest assured that shopping from Sadoughi will never feel stale.

We caught up with the businesswoman and designer to pick her brain (over email, of course!) on what she sees as being on-trend for the upcoming fall season and how her business has changed as a result of the global pandemic. Keep scrolling to read the full Q&A.

In The Know: What fashion or accessory trends do you think will be big this fall? 

Lele Sadoughi: We are excited to debut a cold-weather group of embellished knit hats, ear warmers, gloves and earmuffs.  Of course, we designed them with a twist, so be ready to see pearls and jewels on your outerwear.

You’re from Dallas but now live in New York City. How have the cities you’ve lived in affected your designs? 

In Dallas, we love big and colorful, and this is evident in my designs. I love the geometric skyline in NYC, so I think I have a nice blend of feminine and modern.

More designs from Lele Sadoughi

You seem to always have a few new designs up your sleeves. What has been the most satisfying piece for you to create so far this year? 

We made several thousand headbands with button hooks on the sides to donate to healthcare workers to ease the discomfort of wearing a mask all day.  It has been so rewarding to receive notes from the hospitals of everyone feeling a little extra special in our custom leopard knotted headbands. 

You recently started to sell packs of fabric face masks. How has the global pandemic changed the way that you run and see your business? 

Everything has changed. As an accessory company, we felt we were in prime position to make masks, but make them special and with a comfortable fit. [Editor’s note: Lele noted that jeweled masks are her favorite accessory of the summer.] We have also added more Facetime and Instagram Live sessions with our Ladies of Lele to keep up the social interaction that we are all missing. 

Pre-Order: Set of 3 Face Masks, $40

Credit: Lele Sadoughi

You’ve collaborated with brands like J.Crew, Stoney Clover Lane and LoveShackFancy. What is the best part about teaming up with other brands? 

It is such a fun challenge to mix two styles into a collaborative idea. I used to design private label jewelry for many years, and I love to immerse myself into another brand and think about how I would wear that. Of the collaborations you mentioned, they are all friends and past coworkers, so it was extra special to work together.  

You can shop all of Lele Sadoughi’s products on her website and find select styles on Nordstrom, Revolve and Shopbop.

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