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Friday Fame: Ballet Rodarte

I’ve always been enamored with these shots of Rodarte’s Fall 2008 collection. It feels like there’s a slight ballet inspiration, though how one could effectively knock out a decent set of fuetes in those massive shoes is beyond me. Does it really matter, though, when they were designed by Christian Louboutin for Rodarte? Hello, dream collaboration!

If you’re unfamiliar with Rodarte, the line was created in 2005 by sisters Kate and Laura Mulleavy, graduates of U.C. Berkley with degrees in art history and literature, respectively. It fascinates me that their careers as fashion designers and the subsequent royalty to which the Rodarte name has graduated is all set upon and continuing to build off of a foundation consisting entirely of different arts. I think you can see elements of their studies in their designs. Each of their pieces on the runway turns its model into a sculpture and simultaneously seems to tell a story, or hints that a story exists hidden somewhere between the many layers of fabric.

That’s another thing I love about Rodarte, the layers, and the unique fabrics they choose. They can take fabrics like the heavy, rustic looking knit tights and the different coarse textures in those bodices and make them look airy, graceful and romantic. There’s something uniquely earthy about these dresses, and I think it’s achieved by the special talents of the Mulleavy sisters.

While we may not have any red carpets to walk down in these creations, inspiration is always the most delightful tool. Here’s a Polyvore set I made with different pieces that remind me of these photos:

Rodarte’s eclectic gowns have been worn on red carpets and at special events by such celebrities as Kirsten Dunst, Natalie Portman, Tilda Swinton, Keira Knightley, Reese Witherspoon, Chloë Sevigny, Dita von Teese, Cate Blanchett, and Michelle Obama. The sisters will also be designing costumes for Natalie Portman and Kirsten Dunst's upcoming films. Natalie Portman’s new picture, Black Swan, is about rival ballet dancers so I wonder if we’ll get to see some pieces like these among the costumes. It will be fascinating to see what they come up with!


Jen said...

Oh wow, I'm loving these colors and all the layers! I've actually never even seen any of these photos before. They are so fantasy-like and graceful and the colors are perfect.

Your polyvore set is gorgeous! Be sure to share it in our group :)

Casee Marie said...

I'm so glad you like them, and glad that I can share something new! There's something so dreamy and natural about them.

Thank you! I thought I added it when I published it, but I don't know if that worked. I just submitted it a different way. (:

Kiki said...

Oh my god! I LOVE Rodarte :) I actually just bought a new dress here in Sweden in a powdery pink that reminded me of Rodarte. They are just amazing in their choice of fabric and layering as you said. And I love the dreamlike quality of their clothes :)

Meredith said...

I love this! the fabric reminds me of some of degas' ballerina statues.

Casee Marie said...

That's a fantastic observation, Meredith! I love it.

Kiki, I would love to see a picture of that dress you got! I'm always looking for pieces that remind me of Rodarte. They had a collection for Target stores here in the States back in December, but I missed it. ;)


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