The founding of Rain Couture
The story of Daphne Gerritse
"It was impossible to find a coat that wasn’t too hot, too cold, too wet or too ugly when confronted with the unexpected elements of nature."
Daphne Gerritse, working mother of two, often commutes by bicycle, and found it impossible to find a coat that wasn’t too hot, too cold, too wet or too ugly when confronted with the unexpected elements of nature. Her idea: an all-in-one fashion solution that could work for all occasions, all weather types, all seasons, all styles for all time. It was an ambitious challenge, but one that Daphne took on with full energy and spirit.
The journey started at Première Vision in Paris, where Daphne looked for innovative and fashionable waterproof fabrics (beyond the rubberized ones she’d been faced with all her life). She then hunted down the best pattern and fit design -- an enormous learning curve which ended with a master tailor optimizing her collection. Lastly, it was a search for the most reliable production partner, which sent her from Romania to India, and from Belgium to China. Eventually she ended up with a fair labour and trustworthy partner who shared her high-quality standards.
It took five years to get the product right. Throughout multiple trials and errors, Daphne held steadfast to her vision. After all, she wanted women to feel confident, sophisticated and protected while they rushed around living their busy lives. Her determination paid off in a wardrobe essential that no woman should go without. She has meanwhile expanded her brand range to men, kids and accessories.
Rain Couture is set to grow.
As a child I was always inventive: trying to create things I had in my mind with materials I had at hand. In my mind I could then imagine it completely. But often I did not have the right materials at hand at all. That didn't bother me. Things I saw around me, but which I didn't have, I created myself. For example, I was fascinated by my friend's play post office. Complete with trays, compartments, and bill money. I was inspired by it and created my own tea kiosk from cardboard and plastic. I even created my own flavor of cinnamon tea. No matter what obstacle I faced, I always found a way to overcome it. This tenacity has served me well throughout my life and has helped me to achieve my goals. Whether it's developing a new flavor of tea or launching a successful business, I always find a way to succeed, no matter how long it takes me to master it.
That's exactly how Rain Couture was born; I couldn't find a coat that combined all the best features of a raincoat, designer coat and outdoor jacket. I was inspired by the Norwegian weather while completing part of my master's degree in the rainiest place in the world, Bergen. I could totally imagine it; one jacket that would bring everything together and is wearable in all weather types, and all seasons. And so Rain Couture became reality (after years of struggles ;-))
Inventiveness is paramount, everything should be multi-functional in my opinion. Why should a product only serve one purpose? My jackets are in terms of design and material so beautifully worked out that it’s possible to wear with rain or shine.
Anything inventive excites me. I am someone who thinks in terms of solutions (I can just make if it doesn't exist, right?) and likes to apply technical gadgets and ingenious details. Rain Couture and me, it's a match made in heaven.
You would think that with this passion for creating I would have chosen a more creative study. My clients are always surprised when I tell them that I studied Business at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
But it is this combination that has enabled me to turn my ideas into reality. I am not the greatest artist in the Netherlands, but I am someone who can spot market opportunities and turn ideas into a commercial concept.