Puffy sleeves, exaggerated shoulders, and thigh-skimming hems define buzzy Copenhagen-based label Rotate Birger Christensen, a dress collection created by fashion-editors-turned-influencers-turned-designers Thora Valdimars and Jeanette Madsen. Both fixtures on the street style scene, the Danish duo are well-versed in inventive outfits from suiting to separates and, of course, dresses. When both women struggled to find the exact style of party dress they wanted to wear, they set out to create the silhouettes they dreamed of with the help of Copenhagen concept store Birger Christensen to back their vision.
“We came up with this idea that we wanted to make party dresses but at affordable prices,” Valdimars told POPSUGAR at BG Restaurant in Bergdorf Goodman during New York Fashion Week. Madsen added, “We really felt like there was a gap in the market; every time we had to go to a wedding or a party, it was always the same dresses, but [silhouettes] would not be short enough or not sexy enough. Everything was just too sweet. I want to show skin, I want to embrace that I’m a woman. We always turned to the vintage stores, but then we always had to alter [dresses] to fit the way we wanted.” As a result, Madsen said, “We both have had a dream about having our own brand since we were small girls, and it was just like, we should do this!”
With a clear vision in mind, Rotate was born in August 2018 with an Instagram-worthy assortment of mini and midi dresses with an ’80s bent. Ranging from vibrant solids to retro prints and playful motifs, there’s a style for every occasion, from weddings to cocktail parties and even work. While both Valdimars and Madsen are pros when it comes to styling bold silhouettes and colorful outfits head to toe, they shared a few easy tips for wearing their dresses for everyday.
“I often get asked about colors and how I put them together . . . you have to find the balance,” Madsen said. “Sometimes, you can do two vibrant colors like pink with red or pastel green with turquoise. That’s really amazing. If you [stick to] the same [spectrum] of colors, it’s really hard to go wrong. Tone on tone is an easy way to add colors to your wardrobe.”
When it comes to silhouettes, Madsen said it’s about the right juxtaposition. With a short minidress, she recommends balancing it with flats or a rougher boot. Or, for an unexpected take, styling a mini silhouette with pants for a dressed-down look. “With jeans, you can tuck in [a mini] because it’s so short. I’ve been wearing a few styles with pantsuit trousers.” Another way to temper a bright or patterned minidress is by wearing a neutral color on bottom, whether it’s pants or a shoe. “Everything should have a casual twist,” Madsen said.
Despite an already buzzy first year exclusively designing dresses, the Rotate designers gave POPSUGAR the scoop on what’s next for the brand. “We’re launching tops in November,” Valdimars shared. “Some are holiday, and some are very wearable [for everyday]. We did the wrap dress in a top [silhouette] where we just shortened the dress, [and] we did a puffy sleeve as well.”
Ahead, check out all of the Rotate dresses available to shop at Bergdorf Goodman. Then, continue on for outfit inspiration by way of Valdimars and Madsen’s Instagram accounts. Your next party look? Decided.