NEW YORK — Translating their ethereal, artsy aesthetic to men’s wear, Rodarte designers Kate and Laura Mulleavy took a literal approach.
This story first appeared in the January 5, 2010 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Four sweaters created for Opening Ceremony have the sisters’ signature loopy weave, what looks to be asymmetrical spiderwebs woven into the knits. Two crewnecks and two cardigan designs are each priced at $2,760.
Rodarte’s foray into men’s wear is limited for the time being to the Opening Ceremony sweaters. “There are no plans for any other Rodarte men’s wear items at this time,” said Brian Phillips, a Rodarte spokesman.
The Mulleavys, whose Rodarte collection has a cult fashion following, recently launched a collection for Target’s Go International series. Items from the Rodarte for Target collection bowed on Dec. 11 at a temporary Target pop-up shop in the Meatpacking District here and in Target stores on Dec. 20. The sisters also have collaborated with Gap in the past.
Humberto Leon, co-founder of Opening Ceremony with Carol Lim, explained how the small Rodarte men’s sweater collection came into being. “I had mentioned that I wanted a men’s Rodarte sweater and Kate and Laura said they would make a special limited run just for Opening Ceremony,” Leon said. “We decided to do all the sweaters and T-shirts as a small holiday package.”
Leon was referring to the unisex Je T’Aime T-shirt and sweatshirt collection. “We originally saw them at the Rodarte special shop at Colette in Paris in October and asked if they would make them for Opening Ceremony, as well.” Two of the items were made in collaboration with the photographers Autumn de Wilde and David Armstrong. The Zombie Arrow shirt, $105, features one of de Wilde’s photos, and the white “David Does Ethan” sweatshirt, $210, depicts one of Armstrong’s portraits.
Another T-shirt, which says “Radarte,” was made by the Mulleavys specifically for Opening Ceremony.
Leon said the Rodarte men’s wear items have been “selling fast,” but declined to reveal sales figures.