For Rachel Rose, it all started with a class. The Brooklyn-based designer had been doing production and textile design for mega-retailers since she moved north from Tampa in 2003, but the itch to create her own pieces became impossible to ignore after she enrolled in a silk painting class at FIT, where she learned how to make magic with beeswax, rock salt, sponge brushes, and batik tools. “I knew I wanted to do something on my own eventually, but I had become discouraged—it takes a lot to start a collection,” she explains. “I was trying to figure out how I could do it on my own terms, let it grow naturally. When I learned how to do the silk painting, it clicked. I’ve always loved easy-to-wear pieces, and colors are just so beautiful on silk.”
The response to her shirts featuring saturated, Rorschach-esque designs and boxy, jewel-tone prints has been so tremendous that her namesake line has entered phase two: She’s moved out the operation of her home and into a studio, and there are new silhouettes on the horizon—including a pair of high-waisted shorts, so you’ll be able to mix-and-match Rachel’s distinct work if you so desire.
Behind The Scenes
How Rachel Rose Designed Her So-Stunning Wedding Dress The grandmother of all gowns.Secret recipes, killer stories, excellent hand-me-downs—all reasons to give it up for grandma. And badass designer Rachel Rose really hammers home that last point: “Before I was even engaged, my grandmother gave me a piece of lace. I kept it out and saw it every day—I always knew I wanted to use it for something,” recalls Rachel. That something turned into her wedding dress, which she designed all by herself. Here, Rachel takes us behind the design, from her first... READ MORE »
Rachel Rose Takes the High-Sodium Approach She demonstrates that painting silk can get salty.The finished paint job, at center.It’s pretty amazing what you can do with a few bottles of vibrant silk paint and a container of rock salt. It’s one of designer Rachel Rose’s favorite techniques—although she currently relies heavily on paint brushes and eye-droppers for creating her stunning silk shirts. Here, she shares the how-tos of the technique—which would also happen make an appropriate grade-school chemistry lesson—just in case you hav... READ MORE »
Rachel Rose's Rad Studiomates One of the perks of being a designer: sharing quarters with other really talented people.Rachel signing our certificates of authenticity in the studio’s entryway.Just recently, Rachel Rose graduated: She went from being a designer who works from home to one with a genuine Red Hook, Brooklyn, workspace. There she transforms stark, white silk tees into attention-grabbing, color-drenched pieces alongside other up-and-coming creators. Here are the people who make up her new office posse.Rebecka F... READ MORE »