Rouda is the most-recent addition to the flock of cutting-edge, youth-focused labels emerging from Melbourne.
Rouda’s creator, 23-year-old Megan McNeill, graduated from RMIT two years ago with a degree in textiles, majoring in print. “I had many ideas for Rouda, but I wasn’t sure how to actualise them,” says McNeill, who after a crash course in fashion pre-production has been picked up by cult stores Dagmar Rousset and Monk House Design.
McNeill’s textile background is evident in her motif-driven SS14 collection, Positive/ Negative, which is a blueprint for Rouda’s style. “There are already a lot of great labels coming out of Melbourne, so I wanted to create something that was a little different. I feel that being primarily a textile designer, using print as a focus in my range is a way to offer something new,” says McNeill.
The first collection is an on-point pairing of perfectly contoured silk dresses and culottes with raglan shirts and wide brimmed tie up caps. Playful monochrome squiggles and shadow-puppet prints appear understated on these minimal forms. “I wanted to make sure that the restrained palette and textile designs were simple to coordinate with the clean shapes of the garments,” says McNeill.
With McNeill’s commitment to traditional printing techniques and a style that falls somewhere between a child’s imagination and a modern zen garden, we can’t wait to see what’s next.