Crowning achievement

Headband queen adored by duchess and first lady debuts first boutique in Dallas

Headband queen adored by duchess and first lady debuts Dallas shop

Lele Sadoughi
Lele Sadoughi wearing one of her namesake headbands. Photo courtesy of Lele Sadoughi

The world's most famous headband designer, Lele Sadoughi, is coming home to Dallas this month to open her very first brick-and-mortar boutique. Her eponymous shop will debut at Highland Park Village on Thursday, May 13.

"I’m thrilled for our first store to be in my hometown of Dallas," Sadoughi says by email. "Highland Park Village is a place I have visited my whole life."

To be fair to her 20-year career as a successful accessories and jewelry designer, Sadoughi does much more than headbands. The store will also carry her contemporary-quirky-colorful jewelry, handbags, belts, hats, sunglasses and chains, face masks, cold weather accessories, scarves, and hair accessories.

But yes, there will be lots of her iconic knotted jeweled headbands for both adults and children — and some styles sold exclusively in store. Headband prices start around $45.

"The idea of the store is that it will be like a colorful jewel box where you can try on every piece," Sadoughi says. "Accessories should be fun, and having them all at your fingertips to mix and match is an experience we have not yet been able to share with our customers."

Happy headband accident
A graduate of the Greenhill School, Sadoughi says she was always drawn to creative pursuits while growing up in Dallas. She studied advertising at The University of Texas at Austin, but then decided to follow her bliss into fashion.

She moved to Los Angeles, London, and New York, landing design jobs for Rebecca Taylor, Ippolita, Banana Republic, Anthropologie, and Neiman Marcus. In 2006, she launched the first ever jewelry collection for J.Crew, then held the jewelry design director role at Tory Burch.

In 2012, Sadoughi took a chance launching her own brand of jewelry, which expanded to other accessories, which expanded to headbands — by accident. As Fashionista.com described in a 2019 interview, the story goes like this:

After having two kids in a short amount of time, Sadoughi found herself short on hours to do any kind of primping, so she began to throw on her daughter's headbands to appear more polished. They didn't quite fit, and featured cutesy details, but Sadoughi liked how they looked. She did some searching, combing through everywhere from Amazon to Anthropologie, but didn't see the kind of fun, statement-making headbands she wanted at the right price point. Inspiration struck when she found the pearl-embellished fabrics she was using to make bags, and an Instagram hit was born. 

Fortunately, headbands were already having a moment. Stars like Lady Gaga, Nicole Kidman, Mindy Kaling, and Naomi Campbell started wearing Sadoughi's designs, and by 2019, half of her business was headbands, she told Good Morning Texas.

And then, a crowning achievement, as it were: the Duchess of Cambridge nee Kate Middleton — long a fan of headbands — was photographed wearing her black padded "Alice" headband in Ireland in March 2020, one of her last appearances before pandemic shutdowns. 

 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Lele Sadoughi (@lele_sadoughi)

Like many fashion designers, Sadoughi quickly pivoted to producing face masks for both adults and children last year. The company has continued to grow with the support of over 150 global retailers (and not one paid influencer, she has said).

The star-sightings continue, too. First lady Dr. Jill Biden — an unabashed Sadoughi fan — has been spotted wearing Sadoughi jewelry and face masks on several official outings in recent months.

 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Lele Sadoughi (@lele_sadoughi)

But she and the duchess will have to rendezvous in Dallas if they want to browse and shop at Sadoughi's only storefront. (Expansion plans are reportedly in the works.)

The Dallas boutique will open its doors at 67 Highland Park Village on May 13. (Easy to remember because Lele Sadoughi is next to Lela Rose.) Regular business will be 10 am-6 pm Monday-Saturday and 12-5 pm Sunday. 

A grand opening celebration will take place 10 am-6 pm May 13 and will include an outdoor garden party, in-store exclusives, hand-painted headbands, sweet treats, rosé wine, and more surprises. It is open to the public and free to attend, no registration required.