TO MEET · 03/07/2013
Society for Rational Dress
Corinne Grassini’s office space in the Los Angeles Arts District is a “playground for clients,” filled with beautiful pieces of clothing and a wealth of knowledge. For ten years, the California-based designer of Society for Rational Dress produced a women’s collection with an impeccable attention to detail.
She’s now transformed her business into a consulting company. Her studio provides clients with creative inspiration for their own work and the business knowledge they need to create a commercially viable collection.
Corinne began working as a pattern maker, and created Society for Rational Dress designs based around pieces found at army surplus stores. She would rework leather harnesses to fit the female form—for example, one piece hanging in her studio included a leather shoulder strap paired with a peach chiffon as a flowing dress.
Throughout her time as a designer, Corinne was always consulting—she was always balancing both creativity and business. Now, she’s essentially doing what she did with her own line for other clients.
Clients can visit her space to pull from her collection of vintage pieces for inspiration, fabrics, patterns and design tears. Once they have designs, Corinne will walk them through the process of development, sourcing materials and manufacturing.
The entryway of her studio space is an “inspiration library” for visitors, as they can sort through pieces from her own line, including knits, evening wear and pieces with metal and leather accents. The space can also be transformed into a small pop-up for designers to showcase their work and hold small sales.
Does Corinne miss the actual design work? After seven months strictly consulting, her creativity is still going—she’s happily fueled by seeing the work of upcoming designers.
Corinne is wearing the Edgeworth in English Oak
Photos by Collin Hughes