Springtime is reminiscent of budding flowers, and warmer days to come.  


When I view the  neophyte designer's, Rochelle Carino, feminine spring collection I am transported to an exotic locale; where the climate is balmy and the clothes are breezy.

Fresh to the fashion industry, Carino started out helping other designers create and sell enviable pieces at houses like Ruby Rox, and Nicola Bertti. Not long after she realized it was her vision to create an independent line of her own. Her dream soon become reality when naming her brand RumpleMunkeh; after legendary fairy tale Rumplestiltskin and her nickname “monkey”.  Carino began hammering out dress after girly dress in May of 2009.  Since then her most current collection, Spring 2010: Geishas in Springtime has been the most inspired of any of her works thus far.


Japanese influences

When asked about her inspiration, Carino divulges that she wanted to capture the beauty and authenticity of the Kimono by using lots of prints and bright colors. And captured it she did.  The moment I laid eyes on the collection, it said modern day geisha all over it. Well, modern day geisha in Miami that is. The concentrated colors, short flirty hemlines, or long tube maxi dresses would be perfect for the warmer days and nights of the year.  Japanese influences came in form of cherry blossom print tunics, obi belts, sashes, pretty parasols, and flirty fans during her show at L.A. Fashion Week last year. The appropriately styled models looked to be enjoying their run down the catwalk.  Some were smiling, while others ( possible contenders for America’s Next Top Modeldared to vogue down the runway. Favorites for fashion expert extraordinaire (moi include several looks all of which will most likely be worn in unpredictable San Francisco temperatures; since there will be no destination vacation for me this year.  My top four from this collection are as follows:

I tracked down LA based designer Rochelle Carino to ask her some questions and get all the dirt on what we really want to know…Has she ever been on a reality TV show? Are you really not supposed to feed the models?  Has she witnessed firsthand Heidi and Spencer’s staged photo ops? Okay, so maybe it’s just my lifelong dream to see the Pratt’s in action. But seriously, let’s dish about prices, fashion and celebs!

Rochelle what does fashion mean to you? People get to paint a different picture of themselves every day. Fashion is expression. Fashion is an individuals opportunity to make a statement.


What was the inspiration for your most current season?
My spring 2010 collection was inspired by the Geisha of Japan. There is so much elegance and beauty in the Japanese culture and I wanted to represent that in the clothing. I used a lot of prints and bright colors because I thought they really captured the authenticity of the Kimono. I'm currently working on my fall 2010 which is inspired by the classic Bond Girls with a vintage flair.

Tell me a little more about next season's Bond Girl concept, it sounds interesting! I love the sexy, elegant and yet dangerous vibe that Bond Girls give off. I hope to make my next collection dangerously enticing. Some pieces have special "instructions".  I'll be debuting this one in March 2010 for LA Fashion Week


Looking through your designs on your website, I noticed a lot of the pieces were very feminine (dresses, skirts, rompers), do you plan on doing masculine, everyday pieces? Maybe......but I'm such a girly girl. 


What makes your clothing/accessories unique? I don't let the trends influence my work.  I design what I'm inspired by at that moment.


Are you as a designer earth conscious in any way, whether in your designs or in the manufacture of your clothes? One of my main goals is to help "change the world through fashion one garment at a time."  I've already worked with several charities and I plan to work with many more including environmentally conscious organizations.   


Celeb you've always wanted to dress? I'm dying to dress Anne Hathaway, Rachel McAdams, Katherine Heigl....I feel that these women have the perfect look for my line. Classy, elegant, sexy, stylish...  


Favorite fashion reality TV/non reality show? Project Runway of course! 


Flats or heels? Heels! I'm 5'2" and with heels I can be 5'6".  I actually experience a different perspective when I'm "taller".   


Favorite/best place to shop in LA? Thrift stores! I've found a few holes in the walls throughout LA.  

What are your price points? $40-$300+…I do a lot of beading and embroidery by hand. Stuff like that is on the higher end of my price points

Where can my readers buy your clothing? On my website,  or Taylrz Joynt in Sherman Oaks, CA. I really hope to expand in 2010


The short and sweet geisha girl dress, with detachable obi sash. Its uncomplicated colors (red, navy, and cream) turn a would be seemingly plain Jane frock into a beautifully simple outfit. Parasol not included.

 A regal flower print column dress in sapphire and ivory tones pairs sophisticatedly well with a wedding white satin obi belt.  This perfect, statement making party dress would look great with scarlet hued pumps.

An adorable mini peplum tube dress scattered with florescent pink roses on a mint background makes for an elegant warm night get up. This one is easy to accessorize, with a matching wrap and a giant fuchsia bow belt.


Fashion Writer Carlina Harris
Images Rochelle Corino | Rumple Munkeh


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