Thursday, December 20, 2012

Rubin Singer Dreams in Black and White and Technicolor

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A Clothing Architect

Fashion designer and clothing architect Rubin Singer, above, is beyond talented. He’s a fashion prodigy. A third-generation couturier, Rubin has been surrounded by couture and fabrics and tailors his entire life.

With deep roots in Russian haute couture, Singer developed his sensibilities at an early age. His father Alik created costumes for the Bolshoi Ballet and the Stanislavsky Theatre, and his grandfather, for whom he is named, was one of the most celebrated designers in the Soviet Union, dressing Russian royalty, Soviet political figures, and the social elite.

But Rubin, 34, speaks casually about his impressive family resumé, and even more casually about his craft.

“It’s part of my DNA,” he told me. “A woman is most powerful when she feels beautiful. Everything I do stands for that.”

And where does he derive his inspiration? He speaks in his signature casual manner, “It’s an intuition,” he said plainly. “It’s like trying to describe which way the wind is going to blow.”

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Still, every genius has his muse. Rubin’s 2013 collection, for example, was based on a pre-Raphaelite painting, “The Death of Ophelia” by John Everett Millais, shown in part above. It’s based on the Shakespearian tragedy Hamlet, and is described as one of the most poetic death scenes in literature. “This hauntingly beautiful painting’s depth and complexity inspired me profoundly. There is a sharp dichotomy between the serenity–the ethereal beauty, as she is dying,” said Rubin.

Black and White

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It is this duality which fascinates Rubin–a strange beauty working as the catalyst for his breathtaking designs, available exclusively at Neiman Marcus stores.

“I like the underbelly as much as I like the light,” he stated. “When I design,” he added, “there is always an edge.” A whisper of crinoline, perhaps, peeking out flirtatiously from a formal gown; Rubin has a penchant for adding a touch of scandal to his works, which he calls “aggressively sexy.”

Technicolor

Each gown opens as intricate as a Fabergé egg, with an unexpected twist and its own unique, awe-inspiring splendor. Each gown reveals itself as a detailed masterpiece, a treasure.

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In saturated hues and opulent fabrics, Rubin dreams of the fancy, the exotic, and the enigmatic all simultaneously in every manifestation of his ripe imagination, and all with a profound understanding of what makes a woman look and feel truly beautiful.

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He redefines the little black dress, below, shrinking proportions to epic heights…

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…and uses playful prints to punctuate yet another…

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“Every gown must be unique,” he explained. And in fact, just like the Fabergé eggs–and the women he designs for–no two gowns are ever the same.

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A gold micro dress is shorter than its beaded trim…

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A wedding gown with a side bustle is at once formal yet irreverent…

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And the piece de resistance? For me, it’s this cantaloupe-colored melton cashmere coat priced at $6,375. It’s all I want for Christmas.

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Are you there, Rubin?

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