Through Hastings, Rae was introduced to Lily et Cie’s fashion legend founder, Rita Watnick, whose collection of exceptional runway pieces from the past century has enriched the wardrobes of stars like Margot Robbie, Jennifer Aniston, Winona Ryder, and Kim Kardashian. Having provided Kardashian with Alexander McQueen’s iconic spring 2003 ‘Oyster’ dress for her trip to the Vanity Fair Oscars party in 2020, Watnick knows a thing or two about creating a viral moment. Still, Rae wasn’t on her radar until the 22 year old visited the Beverly Hills store. “Ryan and I had dressed a lot of people together so when he said he had a client who was headed to LACMA, I didn’t even ask who it was,” shared Watnick on the phone from Los Angeles “It was only after she left that I learned more about her background. Ultimately no matter who it is, what you want is to match the person and the dress in a way that allows them to be their best.”
Watnick was impressed by Rae’s love of fashion artistry, a quality she has in common with some of Lily et Cie’s longtime clients. “In a way, this reminded me of a long time ago when we dressed Kate [Moss], Winona [Ryder], and Naomi [Campbell] in vintage during the nineties,” she says. “They were very young at the time, and everyone wanted to dress them, but they were intent on charting this independent path where they could define [what] ‘well dressed’ meant for themselves. Fashion was a part of how they shaped their futures….I don’t know what our future is with Addison, but she’s been incredibly gracious, and this was a moment where [she] decided to go her own way.” (While this was the beginning of their collaboration, it’s not Rae’s first dip into the archives; At the September 2021 Met Gala, Rae wore a red gown from Tom Ford’s fall 2003 Gucci collection).
During her fitting, Rae immediately gravitated towards the moody, sequined Scherrer piece, complete with a plunging neckline. “It felt like it was made for my body, which is what defines couture,” she says. “We instantly knew it was the dress for LACMA. It’s so delicate and glamorous but still has this sexiness.” The addition of Art Deco jewels, one of which hung by her exposed navel, added to the gown’s appeal adding a jazz age touch to the ’90s finery. “The three necklaces are all hand-carved crystal made in Paris in 1925,” explains Rae. “When Rita and Ryan put them on with the dress, it transformed the look into something extraordinary.