Reiss, the British-based contemporary clothing label, has been around for a while. In fact, the brand just celebrated their 40th anniversary last night over cocktails at the Crosby Street hotel. But many folks, especially Americans (Reiss only has outposts in NYC, LA, DC, Boston and Florida), only became aware of the brand when Kate Middleton wore a cream colored Reiss dress when she was photographed by Mario Testino for her official engagement portraits with Prince William. It wasn't new--it was from her closet. Nevertheless, a frenzy for the frock followed and Reiss rereleased the fall/winter style for this current spring season in a lighter material.
"It was the most bizarre thing--I was flying to Moscow that day to open our new store there and as we land I turn my phone on and I was absolutely inundated--journalists, requests for TV--and I had no idea what it was all about," founder David Reiss told us. "And then the whole thing snowballed from there. I was getting calls from Hong Kong, Germany, Spain, the US--pretty much all the key American programs wanted me to do TV--it was phenomenal. I knew the Americans loved royalty, but to that extent I didn't realize."
And as for what Kate has done for the brand?
"It has been quite phenomenal because as a brand we've always been quite understated and if nothing Kate has given us that brand awareness in the States," he said. "You can't put in monetary terms what she's done for the brand. Whether it's coincidence or not I've just come from a meeting with Bloomingdales and we just signed up to open on 59th street."
If you liked the Reiss dress Kate wore in her engagement portrait (and since the reissued dress has sold out online, it seems many people do), Reiss let us in on Kate's most recent purchase (she remains a loyal shopper). Take a look, seems like a perfect honeymoon dress: