Batia Rutenberg, the designer behind the brand


This is the story of Batia Rutenberg, the international designer that travels today between Milan and Florence, Tel Aviv and New York and responsible for everything Baci. Get to know how she started Baci, what inspires her and why Baci has become the renowned brand that it is today.

"Growing up, I had two extremely talented grandmothers that came to Israel after WWII from Europe. One of them was a remarkable seamstress and embroiderer - she used to sew bedclothes from white cotton and lace that was completely decorated with handmade embroidery. The other grandmother was exceptional at restoring old furniture and knitting, crocheting, sewing and designing clothes. I always looked forward to being around them and studied all of their skills from a very young age. That was the time I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. Their creativity won me over and made me what I am today.

For my 12th birthday I asked my parents for a sewing machine - a very unusual birthday wish for a 12-year-old girl. I was so happy with my new sewing machine!! At the age of 14 when I was in the 8th grade, my friends told me I would be a jeans designer. I used to drag my dad to "Haifa Port" to buy jeans from sailors that brought them back to Israel. Back then we had only local brands, but I had my sights set on Levi's and Wrangler. One day, I went with my dad and bought a pair of jeans and a jeans jacket. The Levi's, aka "Red label" jeans had no stone wash and the material was very stiff, so as we got back home, I took my brother and the neighbors and sat them down with stones to scrub the jeans. From that point on, everyone wanted those "handmade stone wash jeans" I had made because you just couldn't get them anywhere.

At school, because of the uniform we had, I wasn't allowed to wear my jeans. I was a very stubborn girl and wore them anyway, resulting in my getting reprimanded more than once.

Times differed greatly back then. There were no boutiques and very little access to fashion accessories. I managed to produce some unique and outstanding garments for myself and it became very clear that I was drawn to fashion. Now, Fashion and style are an integral part of my D.N.A, a gift I was born with. Now, for 40 years I've been a fashion designer and the one of the founders of "BACI" fashion.

How did Italy come into my life?

Italy speaks the ultimate romantic language which includes fashion, design, style, food and wine - it's a lifestyle statement. I was exposed to Italy when I was a young girl when a new Italian family came to live in our neighborhood. They were a family of 5 that moved from Venice to Israel. Our families became very close and were good friends, we became one big family. They used to speak Italian and I was enchanted by the language - all I wanted was for them to teach me how to speak. The Italian gourmet ruled in their house and I was exposed to such amazing, colorful and superbly tasty dishes. The mother and grandmother, which btw, looked like Sophia Loren, used to wear Italian fashion, comb their hair the Italian way - I felt I was in an Italian movie that was directed by Vittorio De Sica or Federico Fellini!

Italy ruled their house, I was mostly charmed by their clothes and language. Their clothes were so meticulous - the material, sewing and style were so precise.

Italy is the birth of elegance. It is everywhere you turn. Italians pay a lot of attention to what they wear, how they look, aesthetics of their food and wine, their car design, their architecture and art.

The people's precise styling of their clothing on a regular basis is admirable - even the policemen and flight attendants' uniform is impressive! "

With "Baci" my goal is translate the "Italian Way" to my customers worldwide. That "Italian Way" emphasizes beauty, aesthetics, design and hedonism - "La Dolche Vita".

There is a saying in Italy - "In fashion there is one simple rule: What's hot is what's Italian"

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