L.A.'s Big Fashion Moment: So Far, SoCal

by The Daily Front Row

(LOS ANGELES) A sneak peek into the stylish world of L.A. via The Daily‘s first-ever Hollywood issueThe real turbo engine in L.A.’s fashion explosion is the designers (green fuel, of course, darlings, this is California). Here, the creme de la creme of the L.A. design world tell us what drives them and show us why Los Angeles fashion is suddenly the hottest thing around.

Scott Sternberg, Designer of Band of Outsiders
Your L.A. story:
I’ve lived in L.A. since 1997 and started Band here 10 years ago. L.A. is my home and I couldn’t really think of leaving—I’m drawn to the weather, nature, expanse, and the pervasive sense of strangeness that seems to linger just about everywhere.

What’s behind the movement:
There’s so much space in L.A.—space to work, think and chill, and space from the center of the industry in New York, which allows for a sense of freedom and individuality. That individuality is probably the main point of connection between the L.A. brands you mention, as each of our aesthetics and products are pretty diverse and even disparate.

The celebrity element
Well, celebrities have an impact on so much in our culture right now that it probably doesn’t matter where you work. For us, celebrity is connected to the brand imagery. Our philosophy has always been to shoot people who inspire us and have some connection to the collection we’re shooting that season.

Juan Carlos Obando, designer (and 2013 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalist)
You went from the NYC ad world to L.A. fashion! What do you miss?
I miss the summertime in New York. The whole city really changes with the seasons. I love the parks and the whole vibe, walking around and eating ice cream…and I do not miss the wintertime.

The celeb effect:
I am really humbled and honored when any woman, celebrity or not, chooses to wear something I’ve created. It’s super measurable. A dress can be sold out within hours of being worn by someone who really influences a style driven group. I think Hollywood culture transcends geography…it’s a global phenomenon. Being in L.A. helps but I think at the end it comes down to the dress. It’s a matter of striking the perfect match.

Fun fact, please!
I have probably the most expansive and cataloged iTunes movie soundtracks library you can imagine. Really obsessed about it!

Andrea Lieberman, designer for A.L.C., former stylist for Jennifer Lopez
On NY vs. L.A.:
L.A. is more easygoing and with that comes a laid back sense of luxury.

That famous Versace dress you put J.Lo in back in the day. Please discuss.

In my wildest dreams I couldn’t have imagined the impact of that dress. It was game-changing and in retrospect, it was all about that perfect union: the right girl in the right dress at the right time. It was a truly magical moment for her.

Fun fact:
I climbed the highest mountain in North Africa with an extreme fear of heights. At the top, I was completely in tears: half were joy; the other half utter fear at the thought of getting down.

Your daughter Paloma is adorable. Any plans for a kids’ line? 
Thanks! No plans at the moment although the design gene runs in the family so I am sure once it comes into fruition my 5-year-old would happily take the seat as creative director.

Greg Chait, designer and founder of Elder Statesman (CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund winner)
You live in a surf house in Malibu. Are you a big surfer?
We actually moved to a house in Rustic Canyon recently. Still very near the water, but closer to town. It’s my favorite neighborhood so far, hands down. I surf and I love surfing, but I am not a surfer, if that makes sense. Some of my friends who pretty much only surf are surfers. It seems like a small nuance, but it’s a big distinction in the surf community.

Coolest thing happening in L.A. fashion?

It’s still few and far between, but everyone I meet is doing something different and radical. From Rodarte to The Haas Brothers to
Jeremy Scott, to all the others. I feel like it’s a place where everyone can stay in his or her lane and do something totally unique.

Fun fact, please!
I am fascinated by classic cars. All kinds. It’s starting to turn into a problem for me…

PLUS! More Designers Discuss Going West…

Saint Laurent’s Hedi Slimane: “I discovered Los Angeles in the late ’90s. The city was not at its best at the time, but I fell for it right away. There is something almost haunted about it, a vibrant mythology I find rather inspiring.”

Moschino’s Jeremy Scott: “
I am the pioneer, I got here first. I even remember Tom Ford saying to me, ‘I can’t believe you’re moving there, I wish I could do it.’ I love it here.”

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