Rubin Singer poses in his New York studio amid some of his new glamour gowns. (Photo by Clfford Pugh)
Rubin Singer strapless red gown with bow detail in the back. (Photo by Clifford Pugh)
Rubin Singer models his new outerwear coat for men. (Photo by Clifford Pugh)
Rubin Singer glamour gowns on display. (Photo by Clifford Pugh)
Rubin Singer wedding gown. (Photo by Clifford Pugh)
Rubin Singer mauve tiered coat. (Photo courtesy of Rubin Singer)
Rubin Singer bold yellow sculpted gown. (Photo courtesy of Rubin Singer)
Rubin Singer constructs a mini-dress with jeweled bodice. (Photo courtesy of Rubin Singer)
NEW YORK — Things are busy again in Rubin Singer’s Midtown Manhattan studio. The designer, known for creating special event glamour gowns, apologies for delaying a scheduled interview because he is draping the well-toned body of a Dallas socialite in glittery fabric for a made-to-order creation.
“I’m super busy for a change,” Singer says. “Who was buying evening wear during the pandemic? No one. But now, it’s totally on because all of these girls have been waiting to get married, and the mother’s don’t have a choice. They need a dress.”
Singer is so convinced that better times are ahead in the fashion world, despite the lingering Delta variant, that he has agreed to venture out to appear at a trunk show for the first time in nearly two years. He flew to Houston after New York Fashion Week to meet with clients at Elizabeth Anthony this Thursday, September 16 and Friday, September 17.
Like most designers, it’s been a roller coaster thrill ride for the past 18 months.
“You learn how people really are in situations like this,” Singer says. “Kindness comes out in people that you never thought it would and ugliness comes out, believe it or not. A lot of truths come out, unexpected ones.
“I also found that things that don’t kill you are always going to make you stronger. Rather than sitting on my behind eating and watching reruns, I knew that I needed to be proactive because I knew that one way or another, we’d all be gone or we’re not. It was an opportunity for me to do things I couldn’t do before. It was both terrifying and very exciting at the same time.”
Singer first got certified in PPE and started making masks to sell online. “I couldn’t just sit at home and do nothing,” he says.
With a financial grant from Retailers United, a nonprofit whose mission is to help small and medium wholesalers navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic, he finished developing a low price collection of day wear on QVC called Rubin Singer Studio, which debuted last October.
“It is exciting because it’s something totally different,” he says.
Rubin Singer Pivots With Style
Rubin Singer also developed a line of outerwear for men, women and children, called Rubin Rain, and a line of architecturally-designed sweatshirts in easy-to-wear fabrics for more contemporary dressers. Some of those pieces are available now in Houston at Elizabeth Anthony.
“I had done outerwear over the years,” he tells PaperCity. “I really wanted to focus on that in addition to my existing business. This is another opportunity for me to do something different. I really wanted to focus on some other things I hadn’t had a chance to do before because all of a sudden I had all this time.”
But Singer is most excited about meeting with customers where there is a live, in-person conversation to get feedback about his designs. He even will make a color-coordinated mask to go with a gown.
“Clients ask for it,” he notes.
Singer says he’s learned a lot about the pandemic and himself during the last 18 months.
“It certainly didn’t stop me from believing in things, especially myself,” he says. “It afforded me the opportunity of time, which I had very rarely had. I knew that once it was over I would not have the opportunity or luxury of time. And solace.
“Those two things are luxuries in life. Time and quiet, you don’t get that.”