Like many of us who flip through fashion magazines, I’ve got a little bit of a wardrobe crush on Kate and Laura Mulleavy of the fashion brand, Rodarte. I had heard about them for a few seasons, seen the items in magazines, but until you see a Rodarte item up close, you can’t conceive of the mad genius these two ladies possess. There’s a hint of horror movie in every collection and even their casual accessories have a touch of darkness.
I am such a fan of the brand that when a friend of mine said, “They have a few of this season’s sweatshirts left at Opening Ceremony” last summer, I broke into my Emergency Fashion Fund and went racing down to Soho to get it. Which is where things get insane in a story I like to call The Great Rodarte Sweatshirt Incident.
Let’s get to it.
First of all, it’s a sweltering day in June last summer. But my money and I were not to be deterred. Oh no, I was feeling sassy with my fist filled with $5 bills and I was ready to get my hands on my first Rodarte item.
And why $5 bills, you ask? Because I keep a swear jar. That’s right: I’m trying to curb the cursing. So, every time I use foul language, I have to put $5 in an envelope marked for the occasion. At that time, I’d experienced a rough couple of months with a client and went on a blue streak on a phone conversation with my mother one night, who, at the end of me screaming profanities said,”That’s about $150 worth of cuss words.” And that’s where we rejoin the story, me all sassy with my envelope filled with curse cash.
I walked into Opening Ceremony and made my way to the top floor, which is where they keep My Favorite Things: Kenzo, Proenza Schouler, Alexander Wang, and, you guessed it: Rodarte.
Flying high on an endorphin rush and with a bulge of low bills in my handbag, I was Instant Fashion Tourist. I wasn’t cool, I didn’t have mild interest of people who have lots of money, the ones who buy Chanel bags because it’s, you know, Wednesday. Oh no, I rolled right up to a sales person with the biggest smile ever seen in that store and announced quite loudly with my West Virginia-cum-North-Carolina-lived-all-over-the-country accent:
“I WOULD LIKE TO GET MY HANDS ON A RODARTE SWEATSHIRT TODAY, PLEASE!!!”
Heads turned. The saleswoman (bless her heart) smiled back, and walked me over to the table where they lay smiling at me. I, completely unfazed that people were staring at me for speaking out loud in Fashion Church, continued to tell her how I had lost all this weight and that this was my present for being so awesome and would she please know that I was also trying to stop cursing, which is how I had the money (inside my head, I’m screaming for myself to just shut up.) The saleswoman, so excited for me, grabbed one of her cohorts and proceeded to let me have a private dance party in my dressing room so I could pick the absolute right size and design of Rodarte T-shirt or sweatshirt. We turned on some Rihanna, I danced in and out of the dressing room and it’s was like a montage from Clueless of me in little outfits.
We cleared the third floor and I left with The Precious, aka the Rodarte sweatshirt, in a shopping bag, swinging it baaaaack and foooorth in my joy, when I literally (powered on too much coffee and a shopping high) lost control of the bag and shot it into the air. A few tourists spotted my folly as the beloved sweatshirt, wrapped carefully in paper, went sailing into the air, which caused them to run at the bag. You know, because a satisfied customer having a Mary Tyler Moore moment throwing her stuff in the air says, “FREE RODARTE SWEATSHIRT!” to some people. This caused me to become my dad, former high school football player, as I ran under the bag and proceeded to catch the bag and pull a Theismann as I side armed these people out of the way, tearing into traffic on Broadway.
Yes, that really happened.
Now, traumatized by that experience, I essentially wash this sweatshirt with my own tears because it’s rarely out of my sight. Because, if something ever did happen, it’s…well, let’s just say I’d be a plot line on one of those “ripped from the headlines” shows.
And now I finally have a chance to document said sweatshirt before I head to OC to get this year’s edition. I have to get another one: they’re so soft they feel as if they’ve been spun from the dried tears of tiny cherubs. This is me, rocking the boyfriend jeans in which I have made my home and a trench coat because it’s supposed to snow again this week. Can we shoot some Midol into the atmosphere? I mean, these swings are causing me to crave potato chips covered in chocolate, so I can only imagine that Mother Nature is suffering. That said, FIGURE IT OUT, WEATHER.
That, friends, is the Tale of the Rodarte Sweatshirt. Have you ever hunted an item down and then almost lost it? I’d love to hear if someone else had an almost-gone moment with a beloved item.
What I’m Wearing: Rodarte Text sweatshirt (no longer available, but similar style here AND out the new limited-edition collection at Opening Ceremony); Current Elliott The Perfect Denim Shirt; Denim & Supply Ralph Lauren Skinny Boyfriend Jeans in Reno Wash; Rebecca Minkoff Mini Affair handbag chain (worn as a necklace); ASOS Aviators; Monika Chiang bracelet (no longer available); Brera Orologi Isabella Notte watch (no longer available, similar styles here.)
All images within this post were shot by Giafrese.