Georges Rech started his luxury French fashion house in 1960. It now has outlets in London, Paris, Dusseldorf, Montreal, Moscow, Kuala Lumpur, Hong King, Taipei and many other cities.
The Unanyme junior line, combining knitwear with woven and tailored pieces was premiered in 1981, emphasizing lower-priced compatible separates that could be freely mixed and matched. The next expansion was into a line of accessories, and then came the establishment of Georges Rech Homme, creating for men the clean-cut yet stylish look for which Rech's womenswear had become known. The fourth arm of the house remained the high-end Georges Rech designer line offering structured sophisticated coats, suits, and dresses for women, with a timeless style independent of ephemeral fashion trends. Though each group had a separate identity, the pieces designed for each division continued to embody the basic Rech philosophy of creativity mitigated by realism and wearability.
The company was bought out in 1989 by Courtaulds Textiles of London, and Georges Rech relinquished his personal interest in the house. Since then Daniele Jagot, who worked for the company for over 20 years, took over designing the Georges Rech top-range label, while Fumihiko Harada designed the Synonyme line. By the mid-1990s the label had little flash and sales were far from robust, in part due to a depressed market. The brand made a comeback in 1996 when designer clothing sales rallied in Europe and stayed in the black for several years, prompting expansion. The Georges Rech name became more prevalent in France, with 40 stores in the country (more than a dozen new outlets opened in 1998 alone), the same year parent company Courtauld bought Claremont Garments to augment its apparel division.
By the new century Courtauld was locked in battle with the U.S.-based Sara Lee Corporation over a hostile takeover attempt. To bolster its funds, Courtauld sold several units and put Georges Rech up for sale as well. Despite its efforts, however, Courtauld succumbed and became part of Sara Lee's Branded Apparel Group, which consisted of a slew of apparel, undergarment, and hosiery companies worldwide. Given the similarities in the two firm's business segments, industry analysts believed the acquisition was a good fit for both sides.
The Georges Rech brand for women in 2001 remained feminine and beautiful, still designed by the founder's one-time assistant Jagot. Covering the label's growing success in the the Far East.
Since 1990 the CEO has been Jean-Jacques Wegnez. In 2000 the Swiss group of Leman acquired the Company, and in 2001 Rech International acquired the Paris house of Guy Laroche.
George Rech boutiques number about 90 in Europe. They also have boutiques in several cities in Australia and New Zealand. Britain has about 15 boutiques in various cities.
Their latest line is called Synonyme.
They make very chic, elegant dresses and suits, beachwear, and clothes that work around the clock. They are very French.
His fashion house aimed to create a synthesis of ideas, designing not for any one woman or type of person, but for an ever-changing, contemporary ideal. His simple, relaxed, well-made, and affordable coats, suits, dresses, and separates projected an easy-going accessibility, without compromising on creativity or style, and his name became synonymous with casual chic.
Rech first emerged in the 1960s as one of the pioneers of Parisian ready-to-wear for women. He became known as a leading French manufacturer of tailored coats and suits, before branching out into raincoats. The early coat and suit collections were rather structured and masculine in feeling, but into the 1970s his styles broadened and loosened, with easy jackets over trousers, bloused windbreakers, billowing dresses, and both short and long skirts. Rech was interested in bringing the comfort of leisure wear and sportswear into focus at a time when the fashion majority still upheld notions of clothing propriety, whether it was dressing for city/country, or day/evening. He looked to the youth movements of his day for inspiration, noticing how the young defied adult conventions in their clothing, and he began to experiment with work and leisure fabrics for daytime. He declared denim was the "perfect" fabric, and transformed the humble, working class cloth into several sophisticated and urbane looks, such as a short, black-and-white striped denim pantsuit with witty elbow patches.