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.