This Bird was lucky to get a peek at some of the freshly-minted pieces from Rene Ropas, a new line of clothing with an emphasis on using reclaimed fabric in bold, expressive styles and silhouettes. Rene Ropas is the brainchild and labor of love by creator/designer Morgan Carson, who was on-hand to present some of their summer pieces as well as a peek at the new fall lineup, at a preview party at their appointment-only boutique at 2604 Western Avenue, in downtown Seattle. Morgan explained how Rene Ropas came to be, that it is the culmination of a lifelong friendship between herself and Ashley Renae Moffit; they were quite the daring fashion-minded duo from childhood, recreating new outfits from fabric scraps and found materials, encouraging each other's creative dreams, eventually taking them to art school together. Morgan shared the heartbreaking story of when Ashley was stricken with the cancer that would ultimately claim her young life, but not before Morgan promised to see their shared dream of creating a fashion line that represented their unstoppable creative energy. Rene Ropas is named after Ashley, her love of Spanish culture, and derived from the Spanish word for clothing. In the act of taking old scraps of fabric or unused clothing, the pieces from Rene Ropas are making a statement of renewal; out of an ending, there are always new beginnings.
Clothing with personality and past lives, like dresses made from reclaimed brocade curtains, or a swim coverup sewn from a shower curtain, Rene Ropas is readying itself for a big statement to Seattle and the fashion community at large on Thursday, Sept 22, at iMUSIC, at 332 5th Ave North, in Seattle, from 7pm-11pm. Hailed as the next premiere runway event, the Rene Ropas Dollhouse Prom, will be thrown to showcase Infiniti, their new fall ready to wear collection and their couture line Femme Au Foyer, set to a cutting edge runway presentation that promises LED light shows, choreography and installations by local artists. With sponsors like Google Places and Yelp, and the large iMusic venue, it's a big splash bound to get noticed. They've got style support from Helmet Head Salon, Shocking Goat watches and makeup by Smashing Divas, along with Neuro Water and Novo Fogo to keep guests raising a glass. Much like the theatrical nature of the designs, their Dollhouse Prom event seeks to create a fully-immersed experience for the guests, but at the same time showing design with purpose. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the local non-profit organization, The Mona Foundation, which supports worldwide education and support for women and children.
Tickets for the Dollhouse Prom show are available on Brown Paper Tickets, but for those wanting a chance to win tickets, there's a Dollhouse Prom Seattle Scavenger Hunt going on right now, on Twitter. From Sept 6-20th, follow @reneropas and check their daily tweets with photo clues at 9am/12pm/3pm -- they'll be sharing a new piece from the show, and the first correctly-tweeted guesses, photos tweeted of you at the location, or general tweets/retweets spreading the word about Rene Ropas are eligible to win tickets. The full details about the scavenger hunt and the Dollhouse Prom are here, on their site.
Rene Ropas is dreamily Northwest with an imaginative, rebel edge, driving forth a statement about sustainability and pursuing one's creative dreams. Their ambitious Dollhouse Prom event promises to be as much of a cotillion ball for Rene Ropas designs as it is a way to showcase the city's artistic community -- see you there!
Jaunty Fine Print: photographs by Denise Sakaki at the Rene Ropas boutique in downtown Seattle