Newport Beach - This past weekend, Rosemarie Macklin of Si Mee collections showed off her newest collection at OC Fashion Week. At the luxury hotel of Island Hotel in Newport Beach, various buyers, guests, and industry insiders gathered to see Macklin's island-influenced styles. Releasing her newest collection actually entitled 'Island Style,' FashionUnited chatted with Macklin about her first time showing at the OC show.
How would you describe your collection?
I would describe my collections as being one of nature. I choose to design clothing that I feel reflects my birth country of Jamaica. We have beautiful beaches [so] I try to use light colors, light florals, as well as make it classy because I originally grew up in England even though I was born in the island of Jamaica. So I'm actually a historian by heart. I love the Renaissance Era as well, so I always try to incorporate that in my designs and my styles. I basically just love to see women looking fabulous every day [in my designs.]
Have you shown at OC Fashion Week before?
This is my first time at OC Fashion Week actually. They wanted too see different designs that I do. I have a large catalog of designs, but I chose to use this design that reflects my last visit to Jamaica. [I was] inspired by the different waterfalls, different rivers, different historical pieces that I found in the country and I wanted to incorporate that in my designs. There's the 'Blue Hole' tourist spot, that's why we have the blue designs. Then I have the tropical look, which is when the girls are in their island style. I wanted to bring a little bit of Jamaica to my fashion designs.
What was your aim in showing at this fashion event in Newport?
As this is my first time here, I'm really looking for buyers. I like to give that shock effect and I love when a woman puts on an outfit and she feels like she's the most special person there is, and that no one else has her designs. I'm looking for buyers who like uniqueness and have clients that like to have garments that say, 'I just walked in the room.' My ideal client would love to feel liberated, sexy and classy. Women who wear Si Mee go to the VIP pool parties and when they walk in, that's why my designs are called 'see me' because you can't miss them--you have to see them when you walk in the door.
How do you feel that Si Mee stands out from other tropical, resort collections?
It'ss a different niche in the market because we have swimwear, but we also have a unique kind of cover-ups. I wanted to elevate the uniqueness and sexiness of women through these designs. So now when you think of a cover up, you think of something women use to enhance, instead of essentially hiding or covering [your outfit].
How do you hope to grow Si Mee to in the future?
My aim is to definitely get into retail stores. Right now everything is online at Simeecollections.com. I'm basically looking for that retail market. I'm looking to be in those exclusive boutiques. I want someone to know my designs and say 'That's a Si Mee." Currently, I have boutique in Las Vegas as a private shop boutique that is by appointment only. At those stores, Si Mee ranges from 60 to 2000 dollars depending on the article of clothing.
Any thoughts on LA Fashion Week?
I would love to do LA fashion week. Right now, I've just starting to get into the LA market. I'm so excited because everyone's excited about this new [cover-up] niche in the market so I hope one day to be there.
Photos: Fashion United / OC Fashion Week