Rae is all about lively prints in luxurious fabrications that paint a story of easy-to-wear, always-feminine clothes.
In 2008, while working as a designer for major brands in New York, Denise Gertmenian began constructing jersey dresses and jumpsuits that she and her friends could wear to work during the day, out in Manhattan at night, or to brunch with family. This was the very beginning of Rae: flexible, comfortable, multi-purpose, transitional pieces in solid colors.
Rae was officially launched by Spring 2009 when Denise used her own penmanship as the gold cursive logo on the “Rae” tag and created the brand’s first iconic California “Bird of Paradise” print, which in turn inspired colorful and one-of-a-kind exclusive prints to become the trademark of Rae.
Each and every Rae print is born through an inspiration and an original hand drawn sketch. This attention to detail translates through the clothes that continue to be mixed, matched, and versatile enough to wear in different ways and in different places. The brand embraces Denise’s Pasadena, California roots with its classic and charming aesthetic, and builds upon the last 8 years she has spent in New York by bridging the gap between East and West Coast style.
Denise, who also studied Anthropology and American Ethnic Studies at Wake Forest University, spent a great deal of her childhood in her backyard under a big beautiful pine tree playing dress-up while exploring the outdoors. This included cracking open rocks with hammers in search of gold and crystals, chasing colorful birds, and climbing onto the roof-- all wearing a costume gown, sequin hat, cape, high heels, or whatever was available to mix and match. Trademark neckties, shirt-dresses, tops, and turbans are all inspired by those backyard days of voracious curiosity.