The Local Label That’s Been Dressing the Stars

Rodarte’s fashionable ties to Pasadena.

Any fashionista or red carpet watcher is familiar with Rodarte—the label that’s been worn by famous faces like Kirsten Dunst, Natalie Portman, and Michelle Obama, and is stocked globally by the world’s premier retailers, including Moda Operandi, Net-a-Porter, and Neiman Marcus. However, you may not be aware of the brand’s Pasadena connection.

Rodarte was founded in 2005 by sisters Kate and Laura Mulleavy after they returned home to Pasadena following college. Since then, Kate and Laura’s vision has expanded into multiple artistic endeavors, including costume design, writing, and directing, and launching Radarte, a T-shirt and casual wear collection designed for every day that pays homage to their laid-back California upbringing.

But while the sisters may mix and mingle with the Hollywood elite, they haven’t forgotten their Pasadena roots. In 2019, Rodarte’s fall fashion show took place at The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens in nearby San Marino, the same locale that inspired their spring 2007 collection.

Recently, Rodarte showcased their spring 2022 collection, which gives a nod to nature with ocean-inspired, hand-beaded bodices resembling shells, bold beaded florals, and cape dresses in a mushroom print.