Studio Visit: Rachel Antonoff on Finding Inspiration in Daydreams and Making Fashion Fun

If you ever stop into Rachel Antonoff's studio, don't be surprised if she offers to make a coffee run for you. That's Antonoff in a nutshell: bright, energetic and above all, keeping things a lot more casual than some other Fashion Week insiders might.

Her guileless persona is the genuine result of never having wanted to be a high-fashion star: Antonoff started her design career sketching the dresses she wanted to wear, without any intention of building the kind of label she now spearheads, let alone staging two fashion week presentations per year and a collaboration with Bass shoes under her belt.

Her design signature revolves around darling dresses that are both ripe for twirling, while also managing to avoid being too twee. When it comes to showing them off, Antonoff infuses her personality into offbeat Fashion Week presentations that have included murder-mystery performances and slumber party set-ups. Most recently, her Fall 2011 in a prom-themed show was staged in a high school gym that included dancing models, streamers and Sno-Balls.

Her lookbooks are equally imaginative, with Spring 2011 depicting actress Katrina Bowden jumping on the bed in Antonoff's childhood home. For Fall 2011, the designer tracked down a miniature-horse farm upstate for a pitch-perfect backdrop to the whimsical collection.

Video by Fritzie Andrade

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