Susie Mackenzie Malignon has spent much of her life living in big cities, from New York to Paris, but the minute she discovered Sag Harbor, it was love at first sight.
For the past several years, Ms. Malignon, who grew up in the Midwest, has split her time between her home in Sag Harbor and residence in New York, with her husband, the photographer Jacques Malignon.
Like many others in that situation, when the pandemic hit, they found themselves living exclusively out east. Ms. Malignon, who has done modeling since the age of 18, found herself with extra time on her hands, and decided to pursue another passion, building a small business around the town she has come to love, creating Sag Harbor Charm, an online brand focused on beach-themed merchandise and art that is centered around her love of Sag Harbor.
“From my first visit to Sag Harbor, I knew it was going to be a long-term romance,” she states on her website, sagharborcharm.com. “There is truth to the expression ‘sense of place,’ and I felt it.”
Sag Harbor Charm sells everything from beach towels to espadrilles to tote bags, all with a distinct blue whale’s tail logo. The site also includes guest designers and artists and other curated products, such as brightly colored Maria Victoria handbags. There is also featured art and photography for sale on the site as well.
Ms. Malignon said that while traveling the world and living in cosmopolitan cities such as New York and Paris opened her up to new experiences, spending time in Sag Harbor in recent years has enabled her to “appreciate the simple pleasures life has to offer and the magnificent landscape that surrounds us.” She referred to Sag Harbor as “a beautiful muse,” and said she is excited to expand the brand and offer more products on the website, with the ultimate goal of one day operating a storefront in the village. Ms. Malignon’s idea for the brand was born out of her Instagram account, where she has routinely featured photos and landscapes in appreciation of the village.
Ms. Malignon is excited for the potential of the brand, and said she plans to curate more items and merchandise, whether it’s a candle or room fragrance spray, or art and photography offered at different price points. She also added she wants the business to benefit the village as well, with plans to donate proceeds to the Sag Harbor Partnership.
“I don’t know where it’s all going to go, but I’m going to follow the path it takes me on,” she said, adding she hopes Sag Harbor Charm can encapsulate everything she has come to love about the village.