Fashion

RIXO: The Pair Behind the Prints

An Interview with Henrietta Rix and Orlagh McCloskey of RIXO London

“It’s still a little pinch me moment to see your designs on the street” say Henrietta Rix and Orlagh McCloskey of cult fashion brand RIXO. Beginning their careers in management and buying, the pair took a leap of faith into the world of design back in 2015. “We have always both been really creative, but at the same time have had an eye for a commercial product that is wearable” says Henrietta.

Spotting a gap in the market, you may say the label appeared by accident. The pair left their jobs as buyers and prepared to set up shop creating beautifully crafted dresses with prints designed by a close friend. Due to a clash in schedules, the pair were left without their pattern-maker and instead, without any formal training, picked up the paint brushes themselves. “We’d never intended RIXO to be a print-heavy brand, but the reaction to our first two prints was so great that we thought: ‘You know what, we can actually do it ourselves.’”

Painting by hand, chalking, sketching, and drawing all the elements of the prints, the pair like to have fun with their collections. “We […] aren’t afraid of colour but also want to create flattering pieces that are meant to be worn. We want to make our customers feel comfortable, figure flattered yet special in RIXO.”

Inspiration comes from everywhere – “it can be an old picture of Princess Diana, a book, vintage fair, traveling – we constantly have our eyes peeled for something magical that we know we can created something fabulous from.” “My mum has been a huge inspiration to me. From an early age I have been going to vintage fairs, flea markets and fashion auctions so design natural has always held a special place in my heart. In fact, she believes she trained my eye” says Orlagh.

The authenticity of RIXO is clearly at the foundation of the brand, with original styles and prints in such exclusive amounts causing heated discussion. A year from now the pair plan to have increased product offering, introducing t-shirts, knitwear and swimwear to the collection. There’s also plans for an accessory edit, “very soon there will be RIXO bags, jewellery, belts etc.… we would love our customer to be able to shop the full look.”

On sustainability, expansion, and the future of RIXO, the pair state that they have no plans to massively scale up their business. “We only have one trusted supplier and […] we want to be clever who we partner with. We keep RIXO exclusive so it won’t be found in every shop.” Using 100% silk in their products is a must for the girls, not only is it luxurious and premium, “it’s also a natural material that we, personally, love.”

“The SS18 collection is all inspired by under the sea and we have a magical hand painted print”. Rix and McCloskey often take a flavour for their prints from nature and the natural world. Their ‘Camellia’ print dress has become a cult item and last season’s oriental Shanghai range, covered in palm leaves, swans, orchids, and yet more camellia flowers, sold out in just forty-five minutes.

What are the pair most excited for though? “For SS18, there are fun disco polka dots and a vivid bright brush stroke floral print.” “There are lots of favourites, says Henrietta, but something I’ll wear a lot this summer will definitely be the Lucy High Neck Backless Dress in my favourite Bunch Floral print.”

Looking ahead, Henrietta and Orlagh have more exciting things coming our way. “AW18 will be heavily disco themed. Think party sequins and a lot of fun. Watch this space.

Words by Georgia Leitch / Images courtesy of RIXO London



Georgia Leitch

Georgia Leitch

Writer and expert

A fan of maximalist fashion and all things fluffy, you can find me layering prints or looking for new earrings. A disco queen at heart, if I'm not dancing around the house to 70s soul, I'm counting my flares.


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