As a child, fashion designer Michelle Rhee was shy and fascinated by how, instead of the spoken word, clothes could communicate on behalf of the wearer. “That always gave me confidence,” says Rhee, who gravitates toward a small but attractive variety. It’s no wonder that, when he studied art history in college, he was taken by German Expressionism, an early 20th-century movement whose artists offered a rigorous, leading-edge approach to their space and ideas. “There’s something classic about the paintings, but they’re given a lot of energy,” says Rhee, 33. The same can be said about the 18 pieces that make up the inaugural collection under his name, which debuted earlier this month. and stands to be a favorite of women who want to dress simply but not quietly.
This conflict between subtlety and boldness exists in design among others: between soft and structured fabrics, flowing and well-constructed structures and many others. There is a shirtdress with epaulets that can look very useful if the piece is not made of double-faced satin. There is a double-breasted blazer reminiscent of tailored menswear – and can be paired with a triangle collar and a wool skirt with belt loops and a zip fly. The long-sleeved jersey dress has a knot at the sternum and has a skirt with pleated pleats. “That’s a good time,” says Rhee. Another dress, available in black or fuchsia, features a thigh-length chiffon skirt with a ribbon that comes out over a satin box with a deep U-neckline. It’s easy to imagine meeting a leading lady in it at a party, meaning these are great dresses. which is not only beautiful; Rhee has re-energized them.
It’s an image he’s been forming in his mind, consciously or not, for a long time. Interning at Harper’s Bazaar during her sophomore year at NYU inspired Rhee, who as a teenager drove from Los Angeles to the city to shop at vintage stores, and looked forward to her monthly issue of Vogue, to consider her career. fashion. He said: “I grew up in an environment where people always worked hard for education. “Then I realized it was the right thing to do and had great potential.”
In 2012, Rhee joined the design associates program at Parsons and, before graduating, he got a job at Marc Jacobs, which gave him an inside view of the large house, which is run by the designer, he says, “a big idea of what fashion can be.” As a result, at Derek Lam, he taught her how to make clothes that women reach for every day, then she moved into a house in New York’s Line Area, which she admired for its abundance and boldness. “It’s an art to connect to which part,” he says of creating other brands but, early last year, he felt ready to create his own.
After some self-reflection, she discovered that her fashion sense isn’t that different from when she was younger. “I want to provide a new language for people to be able to express themselves,” he says, “and a very special kind of whatever they end up wearing.” This means partnering with fabric mills, pattern makers and factories they trust and getting each piece just like that. But Rhee wants to make more than just good clothes – she’s looking to establish, as the brand grows, a team. “It starts with the people I’m working with,” he says. “Considering the big picture of my purpose in life, I want to be a caring and caring person.”
That doesn’t mean they don’t know about fashion trends or New York. He is looking forward to expanding in knitwear and, when he talks about his client, who often – Rhee is the kind of designer who does not forget that his designs will be worn – he describes him, first and foremost, as a traveling woman. At the end of the lookbook for this first collection, which is available for preorder on the brand’s website, there is a group of four portraits that read like film clips: A woman wearing suede and a leather jacket approaching a tree; He then passes behind her and gradually appears behind her trunk until, in the final image, she is gone. “They have to imagine themselves walking around the city and going to places,” says Rhee. In other words, he must be able to think for himself lifewhich becomes the name of the collection.