Rebecca Minkoff has always been about supporting women. Since she first started her brand back in 2001 Minkoff has incorporated women’s wants, needs, and ambition into her designs as well as the mission statement of her company of the same name. In her Soho store, she used to hold fireside chats with female entrepreneurs for the public to come in and learn about their career paths, that evolved into the Superwomen with Rebecca Minkoff podcast. In January of 2018, she partnered with The Women’s March to launch the social space RM Superwomen as a platform for conversation and events to help inspire women to lead “fearless” lives. Even her designs, like her signature Morning After Bag, was designed around the concept of giving a woman enough room to enable her to be ready for anything and look chic (at a 20-something price-friendly point.)
Her feminist passions were especially evident in her most recent presentation at New York Fashion Week as her whole Fall Winter 2019 collection line centers on modern working women. The show, held at Pier59 Studios, consisted of multiple vignettes featuring women in offices (think brightly colored cabinets, file boxes, and desks) wearing oversized silhouettes, tops with slightly puffed shoulders, monochromatic separates, longer A-line skirts, chunky knits, shearling-lined blanket coats, metallic motos, and oversized bombers. The snakeskin leather mini totes, black pebbled leather backpacks, barrel bags, and quilted metallic leather shoulder bags with chain detailing handbags presented an edgy yet professional aesthetic. Shoes fell in with the popular Western theme with metal toe caps as well as grunge combat boots, leather slides, bejeweled slingback sandals and loafers with studs.
The new definition of power dressing
Ladders spoke with Minkoff at her show about the inspiration behind these looks. “It was really all about celebrating women,” she said and like a good boss, she gave credit to her team for helping her vision come to fruition. “It’s not just me. I have an amazing creative team. We sit down and say what does “she” want? It’s not just dressing one woman.” When asked what the new version of power dressing the designer said without hesitation, “It is a hot fuschia suit with a little peplum sleeve.” So there you have it. Other power dressing colors in the collection included sky blues, tomato reds, and sandy neutrals. “As a female founder and entrepreneur, I am continuously inspired by the women around me and women in the workplace who represent strong examples of leadership, strength, and grace. When creating this collection these inspiring women were top-of-mind—I wanted to highlight the modern working woman, her wardrobe, and her environment,” she said in a company statement.
Freedom to pump
One environment that in particular drew a lot of eyes was her depiction of a woman breastfeeding in the office as well as pumping. Model Mara Martin breastfed her daughter against a backdrop of magenta shoeboxes. On a small table next to her was a Medela Freestyle pump and a purse from the collection. This drew a huge reaction from the internet including one from Martin herself who wrote of the experience on her Instagram account. “When @rebeccaminkoff asked me to be a part of her show as a model and mother while nursing Aria I immediately said yes. She wanted me to represent the working mom for her during part of her show because that’s what I am. As women we wear many hats, Rebecca being a prime example of that. She is a mother, wife, designer, businesswoman, and all-around boss. She is the example I am constantly looking up to. The mum went on to add how proud she was to be part of the designer’s vision. Congratulations on an incredible show and thank you for including us!”
Another way Minkoff made sure that her collection wasn’t just for one sample size woman was by partnering with Stitch Fix on the first of its kind size offering — from 00-24 and XXS-3X. “I truly believe that when you look your best, you feel your best and I want every woman to experience that [feeling] when she wears Rebecca Minkoff. Extended sizing has long been relevant, and a priority for the brand, but finding the right partner with the right synergy was equally important – Stitch Fix is the perfect partner for this venture,” she said. The capsule is an eight-piece collection in prices ranging from $138 – $248 and includes skirts, tops, blouses, and knitwear.
Work for it
The Minkoff’s NYFW show was incredibly modern, she encourages the young women entering their career to not expect the modern attitude of immediacy when it comes to success. “Young women today are used to a lot of things being instant, whether its Uber or Amazon and your career is not that. I am 15 years in and I am still not where I want to be,” she told Ladders. “You have to put your head down and work your f*cking ass off. There’s no short cut.”