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17 FRONT

Painters, basketball players, a girl band, a reality TV show winner, higher education

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THE DIXON ZONE Legendary photographer Phillip Dixon speaks his mind

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LA STYLE Sue Wong, Daiki Shimizu, Ron Tomson and Walter Mendez share their thoughts on LA and fashion

The LAStyle Issue

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DRESSING EMPIRE Our exclusive interview with Empire TV show costumer, Rita McGhee

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AUTO BEAUTY A beauty story made in LA, traffic and all

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IT HAT TO BE YOU One girl wearing many hats

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BRIDAL MOMENTS We bring new meaning to June Bride

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FASHION WEDDING STORY Because the Bridal Moment went on in unexpected ways The cast of the Fox TV hit, Empire featuring Terrence Howard, Taraji P. Henson, Jussie Smolett, Trai Byers and Bryshere Y. Gray

THIS PAGE PHOTOGRAPH BY KEVIN MICHAEL SCHMITZ

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the

magazine EDITOR-IN-CHIEF + CREATIVE DIRECTOR

RANDY DUNBAR

EXECUTIVE BEAUTY EDITOR

BETH CARTER ASSOCIATE EDITOR

NICOLE JACKSON COPY EDITOR

NIKI SMART

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

SARAH BERKES • NICOLE RUNNINGEN • JULIANNA MARANON • MARIKA BASTRMAJIAN • MEGHAN WILSON • STACI ADAMS • YASMIN SANTANA • MADAME MP • CECEE MCDANIEL VIVIAN MONTOYA • JESSICA VALLADARES CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS + VIDEOGRAPHERS

• ALEXIS CHONG • MARTA ELENA • RICK DAY • RANDY DUNBAR • KAI HE • PERCIVAL GONZAGA • RYAN JEROME • RODNEY RAY • WES KLAIN • MATTHEW MITCHELL • SARAH ORBANIC • SCOTT NAIDE • ERIK UMPHERY • ZEKE RUELAS • NINO VIA • ANGELA PETERMAN CONTRIBUTING STYLISTS + MAKE UP ARTISTS

BRUNO LIMA • CATHY HIGHLAND • TALIA MCILWAIN • ESTEVAN RAMOS • FELIX BUSTAMANTE KAT FORD • TONYA HAYES • HARPER • JESSE J • BRIAN PRIMEAUX • MYNXH WHITE • WILLIAM WILLIAMS • MITZI SPALLAS • KIMBERLEE BARLOW •ALYSSA ROSE

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LETTER

from the editor

My Kind of Hollywood Working this hard has never been this easy

was recently at a photo shoot conducted by a group of young students from an LA fashion school. From the safe distance of a few feet I couldn’t help but notice how interesting their take on both fashion and make-up was, and while it could have bordered on the ridiculous, it was, quite frankly, inspiring. It reminded me of the vital role that youth and risk possess in our culture in propelling it forward. Without risk, everything remains the same and for an evolving culture like Los Angeles that can be akin to being trapped on a freeway at rush hour. And I must confess that I am simply waiting for some of those students to graduate, so I too can work with them. While we celebrate the young, risk takers of a new generation of fashion designers, we also pay homage to those who have set the stage and laid the groundwork. In particular, we salute some giants like Sue Wong and Phillip Dixon, both legendary figures who have helped shape LA, just by being. We don’t always think of LA as anything other than a movie-making city filled with award shows and red carpets, but there is more. In this case the more would be meeting Rita McGhee (pictured left in the middle with sister Alita). She arrived with her sister, Alita Bailey at Costume Rentals Corporation in North Hollywood and I can only tell you that this was one exhilarating photoshoot. Rita proved to be not just stylish, but personable and gave a great interview! But wait, there’s more. I would also like to thank some people who helped make this issue happen: Katie Nartonis, Heather Russell and Faria Raji, for always bringing something compelling to this magazine. And lastly, my dear friend John Skalicky, who I have worked with for many, many decades—an enduring collaboration that never ceases to be enjoyable and has so often produced great results. Thank you.

I

photographed by John Skalicky at Costume Rentals Corporation, North Hollywood www.costumerentalscorp.com

randy dunbar editor-in-chief

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FRONT

There

BY NICOLE JACKSON

The Shops at Crystals Forget gambling in Las Vegas and take a stroll in this hidden gem

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he Shops at Crystals is one of the most diverse, impressive collections of exclusively high end, luxury brands housed under one roof in the world. The extravagant Las Vegas shopping and dining experience that this mecca of fashion has to offer is highly sought after, attracting guests ranging from celebrities in Hollywood to international elites. As The LA Fashion Magazine, we were invited for a private tour of this famed shopping destination, and I was blown away by the entire experience. From the outside, the luminescent structure resembles the intricate beauty of a quartz crystal with its multi-faceted glass canopy and steel façade, courtesy of architect Daniel Libeskind of Studio Libeskind. Upon entering the 500,000-square-foot shopping and dining district, you are welcomed into the stunning three-level experiential environment by an abundance of natural light. Similar to the dazzling exterior, the interior is designed in a way that pays tribute to the beautiful imperfections of a raw crystal, with absolutely no right angles in the walls or ceiling! Spacious and invigorating, the inside resembles a 21st Century abstract park, devised by interior designer David Rockwell of Rockwell Group. The three-story City Center’s winding pathways and unique, experimental structures celebrate nature and the seasons, featuring “changeable artwork,” such as hanging gardens, a flower carpet, intricate stone steps with Roman inspiration, a 3-story tree house, and much more. What is a park without a sparkling water fountain? Well, this lavish version 17

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contains a few experimental water installations— not your typical water-spurting stone structures though. Wet Design, the creators of the famous Bellagio fountain, produced special water displays just for The Shops, one being tall ice pillars that are preserved underground overnight, and the other being enclosed water tornadoes, called Halo. The natural aesthetic presented by Crystals

An architectural masterpiece alive with creative, yet sophisticated energy, Crystals houses over 53 high-end boutiques. is wholly backed by their major commitment to sustainability. The use of natural light and other unique technologies, such as the water tubing system underneath the floor that cools and purifies the air from the ground up, sets this structure apart from any of its kind. This particular cooling system, which is also used in Aria Resort & Casino next door, almost entirely eliminated the smoky smell that I usually expect when walking into any building in Las Vegas. An architectural masterpiece alive with creative, yet sophisticated energy, Crystals houses over 53 high-end boutiques. I was really impressed not just by the size and scope of the collection of stores found here, but the sheer exclusivity. Designers reserve their most special products and lines for Crystals, like the coveted Gucci

“Giannini” sneaker – which combined a unique selection of precious skins (python, ostrich and crocodile—which are illegal in California), Tom Ford’s women’s ready-to-wear collection, Saint Laurent’s complete line of beauty products, and much more. Almost every store has a ready-towear line accessible for shoppers (something not too common in the realm of high fashion), making it possible for a shopper to literally walk out of the center with a complete outfit for hitting the strip later! The City Center location has more high-end flagship stores than any other shopping center in the United States, including the largest Louis Vuitton in North America and flagships for the houses of Prada, Bottega Veneta, FENDI, Gucci, Tiffany & Co., Dolce & Gabbana Men’s and Women’s, Roberto Cavalli, Bally, Van Cleef & Arpels, and Ermenegildo Zegna. I was of course unable to visit every single store, but I got the chance to take a peak at some of the most unique qualities of quite a few. Many have private dressing rooms for their most elite clients—special rooms that cater to every comfort and desire of a top customer. I loved the drastic difference between Prada’s more contemporary, sleek look (their VIP room was concealed behind doors that appeared to be floor-length mirrors at first) and Dolce and Gabbana’s decadent palace feel (complete with chandeliers and tapestries). Most of these secluded areas offer the royal treatment for private parties as well, such as Sisley Paris’s private facial room and Kiki De Montparnasse’s sexy back room—often booked for bachelorette parties (expect champagne, truffles, and plenty of lace!). Other awe-inspiring features included the 1 Million dollar watch, Croutching Tiger Hidden Dragon, in Richard Mille; Stella McCartney’s dazzling crystal chandelier, Lucky, inspired by Stella’s mother’s horse; and Fendi’s scaled replica of the Trevy Fountain in Rome. The tour itself felt like a mystical journey through a luxurious land of high-end fashion and cultured exploration. By far the most breathtaking stop on my tour


had to have been Louis Vuitton’s art installations. As a huge fan of art myself, I was blown away by the architecture and interior design of Crystals itself, as well as the unique detail in each boutique we visited, but I wasn’t prepared for what I was about to experience at America’s largest Louis Vuitton. Special products such as one of the last Louis Vuitton punching bag sets, a complete mini roulette table, and one of their first trunks from 1911 truly set the store apart from any other I had been in. The art installations were stunning—a reflecting 3-story chandelier featuring 16,000 individual pieces of titanium shaped in the signature monogram, a more minimalist set of colorful cubes hanging from the ceiling set to look like dice from various angles, and the one and only Akhob. All of the art installations are the masterpieces of James Turrell, but this last one left me simply incredulous. Located on a secret level of the store, Akhob (Egyptian for “pure water”) was created with the purpose of replicating the same introspective Gansfeld effect—where you lose all sense of space and time. The twenty minutes of steadily changing lights, cleverly installed at an angle and level of brightness that inhibits your sense of reality to a certain degree, is mind blowing. Words cannot describe the experience. Besides an incredible shopping experience, Crystals provides only the finest dining, with five critically-acclaimed restaurants including three celebrity-owned restaurants; Eva Longoria’s SHe Steakhouse by Mortons, Todd English P.U.B., and Wolfgang Puck Cucina & Pizzeria. The full-service Concierge staff assists in arranging a wide variety of services for guests including acting as personal shoppers, coordinating restaurant reservations, booking show tickets, planning events, and arranging courier services. With so many indulgent experiences available for all the senses, The Shops at Crystals is the ultimate destination for elite shoppers and appreciators of fine art alike. The City Center has set its standards of quality and presentation unbelievably high, making it nearly impossible for any other shopping center in our nation to measure up. The LA FASHION MAGAZINE

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FRONT

Here

BY NICOLE JACKSON

School of Fashion Otis College of Art & Design looks to the future of fashion

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TIS College of Art & Design, L.A.’s first independent professional school of art and design, has been grooming artists and designers to enhance our world through their individual creativity, diverse skills, and vision since 1918. This prestigious institution is a 100% nonprofit organization—everything goes to the talented students, who come from all over the world to receive the valuable education that OTIS has to offer. Before students focus on their major or minor, they are instructed in various inspiring studio and Liberal Arts and Science courses. In this first year, or Foundation period, students not only master their creative skills of drawing, 3D design, etc., but also are called to Creative Action, utilizing their creativity to work together on environmental and social issues. Their primary education builds a foundation and the skills they need to apply their creativity to real-life problems, on both a local and global scale. “I am honored and thrilled to be appointed to head one of the world’s leading art and design colleges at a time when Los Angeles’ cultural institutions and creative industries are such significant forces around the world,” states newly appointed President of OTIS, Bruce Ferguson, also a highly esteemed art curator and educational leader in the arts. “If location and timing are everything, I couldn’t be in a better place at a better time.” With a focus on sustainability and the power of creativity, OTIS is providing the tools for the future generation to make an impact in the world—and Ferguson couldn’t be more spot-on with the influential world-wide reach that the arts in LA has established. In 2013, Fashion Design Chair Rosemary Brantley founded the Otis Sustainability Alliance, a group of creative leaders (including Nike, Patagonia, Disney, Eddie Bauer, Quiksilver, Todd Oldham, and a year later, Under Armour) committed to advancing the environmental, social, educational, and economic dimensions of sustainability. The Fashion Design program at Otis trains students in all aspects of the design process, as well as how to recycle and reuse materials to create sustainable, environment-friendly fashion. Design students learn far 19

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more than drawing, sewing, and patternmaking skills. Being mentored by actual professionals in their field, they experience all facets of the industry and learn to meet deadlines with creativity and self-discipline. As The LA Fashion, we witnessed firsthand the creative success of these dedicated students. On May 2nd, The LA Fashion was invited once again to attend one of the most exclusive fashion events of the year, the 33rd annual Otis Scholarship Benefit and Fashion Show. The OTIS Annual Fashion Show is among some of the most inspiring, highly anticipated annual fashion presentations in LA. The evening was not just glamorous, but exhilarating in every sense of the word. The lineup of attendees was very impressive as well as the fashion show itself. Some of the student work as pictured here is just beyond amazing, a prime example of what the future of fashion in LA has to offer. As Bruce Ferguson mentioned in his opening speech, the “creative economy” in the United States is close to 20% of our entire economy, with California being not only the 7th wealthiest economy in the world but also the number one creative power provider of this nation! “Trina Turk, Lucky Brand, PacSun and their leaders – who we are thrilled to honor tonight

– are fueling the strong creative economy of California which is both unbelievably significant and influential worldwide,” said Bruce W. Ferguson, President-Elect of Otis College of Art and Design. “We measure our civilizations in large part by what the culture produces. The students whose work you see tonight are the legacy of the future – of a sustainable and civilized future.” The Annual ceremony kicked off by honoring some of the leading figures of the California Fashion Industry. Otis College of Art and Design honored the distinguished recipients of its annual art and design awards. All three of this year’s Otis award recipients represent top fashion brands with strong roots in Southern California. The event was followed by the runway presentation of student designs – with over 100 looks on 55 professional fashion models, this was truly one of L.A.’s most creatively impressive showcases. Lingerie designers, Mary Jo Bruno, as well as inhouse designers from Urban Outfitters, Isobella & Chloe childrens’ wear, Anne Cole swimwear, Quiksilver, DC and Roxy, and PacSun mentored the junior class. These professional designers volunteered their time to teach and work collaboratively with a small group of juniors and seniors majoring in Fashion Design. Students then work through the design process – researching, sketching, fabric draping, pattern drafting, fabrication to construction of final garments – all under the guidance of the professional design mentor and the Otis Fashion Design faculty. This year, seniors in the Otis Fashion Design program exhibited work they created under the direction of professional designers Zaid Affas, Joe McCarty for Lane Bryant, Liliana Casabal for Morgane Le Fay, Trina Turk, and Bob Mackie. The theme for this years fundraising event and fashion show was: A Celebration of Water. The 2015 benefit event co-chairs were MGM Studios executive Shelley Reid and Cathy Louchheim of Beverly Hills. The annual event is Otis College’s largest fundraiser; the night’s benefit grossed nearly $1 million in scholarships for art and design students. The LA Fashion would like to congratulate OTIS on their 33 years of providing excellent, high quality fashion education here in Los Angeles for the future fashion designer generation.


FRONT

art

BY KATIE NARTONIS PHOTOGRAPHED BY FARIA RAJI

Garage Painting Artist Stefan Kleinschuster hangs with Keanu Reeves

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world of high-end bikes? Well, I wouldn’t say I didn’t think about it, but I was headed in that direction anyway.

tefan Kleinschuster is exactly where he wants to be. New to the West Coast from Colorado, his large scale canvases currently hang at Arch Motorcycle Company in Hawthorne. The work is a tangible compliment to the bespoke bikes built and designed by Gard Hollinger and Keanu Reeves. Kleinschuster, also a writer, is a serious double threat. A painter’s painter he has a fluid and generous brushstroke which is assured, confident and painterly. The scenes depicted in his work, like “American Beauty” (shown) seem quietly allegorical, even mythic in scale and subject matter. Kleinschuster’s work is a natural fit to his adopted city: Guns, shell-casings or a swarm of bees might unexpectedly enter the landscape. Often a veiled threat of violence hangs over the scene. But the balance is tipped by the artist, and beauty and grace always seem to take the upper hand.

Q: And which direction is that? Freedom: the freedom to adapt to the circumstances. So much of the art world is identification. Doing a certain style and such forever. It makes it very easy on the dealers, and hard on the artist who likes the frontier. Q: Does that mean you’re trying to change? Change just happens, doesn’t it? I think that’s why I’m home, finally, here in LA, it’s because in Cali, the idea of Surfing is much more a reality than a metaphor. Q: And you mentioned before, that you also write screenplays? Yep. I can’t help that one, either.

Q: You are a recent transplant to LA from Colorado. How has this shift affected your work? I’m a bit stunned by the beauty here, frankly. All of the colors, textures, fantastic houses, plants like I’ve never seen, the ocean, the spaces, it’s a lot to be influenced by. I used to paint all kinds of austere self-scapes, but I’ve been dragged out of that space into the world at large, and LA has only made this situation more acute.

Motorcycle Company that brought you out here? And how did that happen? A guy I was writing plays with in Boulder named Ken Conte was Gard Hollinger’s PR guy, and he saw my work. He thought it might go well with the bikes, and in their new space, and so I started painting for that. After a year I brought them out, met with the guys there, and hung them up.

Q: Was it just your showing at Keanu Reeves’ Arch

Q: Was it easy to change your style to fit the new

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Q: Do you find yourself at odds doing both verbal and visual creations? Or I should say, how do you balance the two? I don’t think about it. I only think about the form in front of me, and how to push it forward in a way that excites me. I’m a simple dude, really. Q: You’ve been here six months. I hear you’re on a whirlwind ride. Yeah, well, I’m in good company.

Katie Nartonis is the founder of The Nartonis Project and 20th Century Design Specialist, Heritage Auctions.


FRONT

shop

BY KATRINA LEONCE - CAPLES

Changing the game Basketball stars Jack McClinton and Carlos Boozer take on the world of men’s fashion Jack McClinton off court and in style

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ntrepreneur Jack McClinton is proving that he is one to watch in the fashion and business industries. Prior to gaining attention for his entrepreneurial endeavors, McClinton made a name for himself on the basketball court at the University of Miami, where he was the starting shooting guard for the Hurricanes men’s basketball team. He completed his collegiate career as the third leading scorer in the ACC and then entered the 2009 NBA Draft and was selected in the second round by the San Antonio Spurs. After a short stint with the Spurs, he played overseas for teams in Turkey, Israel and the Ukraine. While he loved playing basketball, McClinton always had an interest in business and a flair for fashion. He credits the lessons he learned as a basketball player, and the connections he made along the way, as the keys to his success as an entrepreneur. Pro23

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pelled by the belief that many of his celebrity friends were limited when it came to swim wear and lounge wear, McClinton launched his fashion line Loaded Dock Resort & Swim with business partner Carlos Boozer of the LA Lakers. McClinton describes Loaded Dock as a new age brand focused on redefining the parameter of fashion. The line embodies the cultural shift for those who have a love for travel and style, offering an invitation for consumers to take part in a new lifestyle and experience a new adventure of fashion. The Hurricanes legend whose jersey is immortalized above Miami’s home court believes he has finally found his purpose. “I always had a chip on my shoulder,” McClinton said. “I knew that I could be whatever I wanted to be. My time is now.” McClinton’s talent, determination and ambition ensures that he will change the game of fashion, too.

Carlos Boozer of the LA Lakers teams with Jack McClinton to make Loaded Dock resort and swimwear.


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A Band of Girls LOS ANGELES-BASED BAND, NVIDA TURN UP THE VOLUME ON MUSIC AND FASHION

PHOTOGRAPHED

BY SARAH ORBANIC

STTYLED BY Q HAIR + MAKE UP BY TONYA HAYES OUTFITS PROVIDED BY CLD STYLEHOUSE The LA FASHION MAGAZINE

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Their live performance and invigorating sound is taking the dance experience to another level. Although only on the eet scene for a short time, NVIDA has NVIDA the one and performed at some of the hottest clubs in only female Pop and Los Angeles, such as Project LA, and LA Commercial House band. Live Conga Room, plus they played at the These four hot Latinas 2015 LA Fashion week. NVIDA have also are energetic, talented opened up for major artist such as Latin musicians, who bring together a passion for music heartthrob, J Balvin, and LiL Jon of the smash hit “Turn down for what?” and life. The girls have Having created a significant buzz in the combined their individual dance scene, NVIDA now has many musical talents of electric producers looking to work with them, violin, percussion/drums, including producer Brian Kennedy and deejay mixing and vocals artist Ceelo Green who are collaborating to form NVIDA’s unique, with NVIDA this summer. The girls are high-energy music. The currently in the studio recording their band consists of Esther Anaya (Violinist), Stephanie debut EP, all the while performing shows. Loayza (DJ), Tiffany Zavala There’s even been a rumor of a reality TV (Singer), and Denise Zavala show in the works! Stay tuned. (Percussionist). 27

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Taz Zavala TABLE TURNER

Stephanie Loayza Stephanie Loayza has been an international touring DJ for the past 5 years performing all around the world, Playing predominantly house music but incorporating all other styles of music seamlessly. Stephanie is a versatile DJ/performer having a wide range of experience from being the official Monster Energy DJ from 2011-2014, to performing for numerous Hollywood movie premieres, to headlining some of the worlds biggest venues such as Marquee Las Vegas, Playboy Club, Club Mink & Filter (Singapore), Klub 360 (Bahrain), and many more. She was also the first female DJ nominated for an award at the 2013 Premios Juventud, as well as opening up the Premious Juventud Red Carpet Show in Miami, FL. Dress by Val Stefani The LA FASHION MAGAZINE

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THE BEAT GOES ON

Denise Zavala Female percussionist/drummer, Denise “Ms. D-Nice” Zavala, has rocked along side the biggest deejays and artists throughout the West Coast with her high energy LIVE sets, from Damien Marley, Richard Vission, Nas, Pitbull, Goapele, to 50 Cent. With Zavala’s passion for music, electrifying energy and jaw dropping beats, she’s said to be the next Sheila E. of our generation and a female version of Ravi Drums. In a short time, Zavala has already established a huge loyal fan base that follows every beat of her drum. Her performance resume is not only impressive but extensive, Performing at Avalon Hollywood, Hard Rock Hotel San Diego, Supperclub, Vanguard, Bagatelle, to name a few. Zavala now provides sexy latin drums and irresistible beats making the dance floor hotter than ever! Dress by: Dar Sara/CLD Stylehouse

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VOCAL EASE

Taz Zavala Tiffany Alice Zavala also referred to TAZ is a Mexican American Pop, Urban singer. After many years of pursuing a career in music, she was signed to Ron Artest’s (Metta World Peace) AMG Record Label at age 20. Shortly thereafter she was discovered by Robin Antin, founder of the Pussy Cat Dolls, when Tiffany’s amazing talent shined performing “Go Loco” at Lopez tonight with artists such as B-REAL, Fat Joe, Aventura, George Lopez and Metta World peace. In result, she joined the Pussy cat dolls 2.0 group, but later decided that she wanted to pursue a different route in her Career, joining NVIDA in 2014. Outfit by Dar Sara/CLD Style House

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THE WORLD ON A STRING

Esther Anaya

Esther Anaya was born and raised in Colombia, and has resided in LA for the past 13 years. She was classically trained for 19 years and performed in many highly respected orchestras & symphonies (orquesta de CAJAMAC, Batuta, Symphonica del Caribe) and has a very impressive and extensive resume, from performing alongside Rihanna and Kanye West at the NBA, the All Star Game at Staples Center, to performing with Christian Castro at the Greek Theater. She’s been touring and performing around the world for the past 3 years with DJ Stephanie Loayza, incorporating her classical training skills to all styles of music by giving them a touch of modern, sexy, classy, and latin vibe twist. Outfit by Dar Sara/CLD Style House

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THE BEAUTY FILE

Who’s that Girl? hint: she just won a reality dating show

photographed by Dandre Michael styled by Jennifer Austin www.jlynnstyle.net

make-up by Beth Carter For Makeupforeverusa

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hair by Teressa Roston For Makeupforeverusa


Welcome to Jade Turpin. A Philiadelphia native, who now lives in LA, she recently was the first African-American bachelor on the reality dating show, Match Made in Heaven, which aired in the Spring. The show featured a cast of 24 single ladies who lived in a mansion in the Hollywood Hills for thirty days, all competing for the attention of one very handsome successful bachelor, his mother and a preach-

She was surprised at the fact that despite always believing reality shows were scripted and unreal, she found herself being open, honest and vulnerable. “There were moments where I really forgot the cameras were there and had conversations and shared feelings which I really didn’t believe I would.” There were the usual stolen moments, cat fights and private dates, and soon it came down to a final three. “Being in the final three, you understand that your feelings are for real and reciprocated on some level. It’s nerve-wracking and exciting at the same time. The whole thing is hard to believe. It’s the fastest, longest, 30 days of your life.” In the end, Jade won the show, and chose to remain in Los Angeles. She and Mr. Bullard are not dating, er. The show was produced by reality producer but remain friends. “Although I do want love Andrew Glassman. Mr. Glassman knew just in my life, I’m still focused on my goals, and what to put into the story line, to make the my dreams. I am a working model and actress. show more exciting than flowers and dating Long term I want to be both in entertainment eliminations. and business.” Once she moved into the house with the And as if that were not enough, Jade has creother women, Jade was truly smitten by Mr. ated a new line of of swimsuits called, Just Jade Shawn Bullard. which will launch this summer. 35

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A R T I S T

I N

R E S I D E N C E

THE DIXON ZONE LEGENDARY LENSMAN INTERVIEW BY JEFF DUNAS • INTRODUCTION BY KATIE NARTONIS

Sometimes the sheer beauty of life demands that you be still and honor it. Photographer Phillip Dixon is a man who has learned to live in these moments. On a sunny Venice beach morning we walked from Dixons Venice beach compound to lunch down Abbott Kinney. The sun was shining, we walked down the street talking, laughing. Time slowed down, every sense was suddenly heightened, I noticed the angle of the light.. I could suddenly see every detail like a photographers eye, every moment a celebration. After lunch - I asked. “Could I get an interview for Randy at The LA Fashion Magazine?” The good news is Mr. Dixon said yes. Prepare yourself, Phillip Dixon is a force, a man who deserves to be called a legend. Phillip Dixon is an anomaly. He is a cross between a genius and a hermit, leading a quiet non-conformist, reclusive sybaritic life in a home that closely resembles a well-designed, incredibly beautiful monastery in some fictional part of the world where people don’t use machines. Dixon reasons deeply into the subjects he’s interested in and comes up with original thought. He’s kind of like someone who has lived on his own, on his own path and when you suddenly take him into the real world, all he sees is decay and insanity. “Don’t they get it?” He’s never completely wrong photo by robert mann – there’s Dixonian logic to most everything he says and he lives exactly according to his own prescription. He’s off the wall, to be sure, yet when you’re with him, you always leave wondering if perhaps he’s got it right and we all have it wrong. We only go around once and maybe his way makes sense if you really think about what he’s saying. He has a way of stripping away the bullshit. He’s unabashedly politically incorrect, and has no qualms about it whatsoever. Dixon is outspoken – so much so that many people can’t really hear what he’s saying and prefer to write his musings off as the thinking of a madman. It often goes against the very substance of what people truly believe – or are conditioned to believe. When he’s encountered obstacles in his life he is like an animal; he merely turns in another direction and continues right along his way. He doesn’t see a roadblock; he simply sees it’s time to change directions. He resembles a mixture of the local bagman and a member of a remote sect – one whose geographical location you can’t quite put your finger on. He dresses primarily in beige or black flowing Indian shirts and trousers. Comfort is the primary purpose for clothing. He once told me he never wears anything 37

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he can’t sleep in. Kind of makes sense when you think about it. In an earlier iteration of his fabled house in the former war zone of Venice Beach, California, Dixon noticed that when he shaved in the bath and drained the water, after a while ants came and carefully removed all the whiskers. Most people would call an exterminator, but Dixon simply saw it as organic maid service. He notices things most people don’t; he’s hyper-observant. At 65 years old, he’s become the venerable sage. He takes himself seriously but he’s capable of laughing at himself liberally. He has wisdom and definitely possesses great talent but he doesn’t care who knows it and couldn’t care less if anyone ever finds out. He walks in a parallel universe where things make perfect sense to him. This hasn’t always made things easy for him when he enters the world inhabited by everyone else. He doesn’t trust most of what he reads or hears. He is one of the few people I’ve ever met who are honest with themselves. He can’t remember names so everyone is “Joe.” This vastly simplifies life. He has a great sense of humor if you know him. Few people actually do. He suffers no fools for people in general and Europeans in particular. He simply chooses not to be part of the rest of the world. He appreciates fine things in life – but not those that cost money – he admires the art of indigenous people (“unpretentious, Joe”), and finds ostentatious, pretentious humans exquisite fodder for his acerbic observations. He has acute disdain for yuppies, “plastic people,” fat cats and flaneurs; people wearing designer clothes drive him into fits of laughter. This hasn’t always won him friends but he wouldn’t want to be their friend anyway. Little details that obsess most of us cause him no concern. I remember sometime in the early 80s discovering he had a checkbook – somehow it struck me as hysterical that Dixon would actually write a check – to picture him actually dealing with the mail, banks, institutions. In the seventies his house was broken into frequently. Each time his TV was stolen. His solution: Nail the TV to the table. “Problem solved, Joe.” He has had a tendency to tell it like it is a little too many times to clients who, if they don’t know him, can react with shock and disbelief but for those who let him continue on his way, the pictures are more than worth it. Those in the know are aware of him and what he can do with photography. The only problem is there are less and less of them. He knew the world would one day come to him. It did, then didn’t, and he simply stepped away. He’s as good as he always was and even better by not just his own admission now – but he only wants to exercise his craft for cash – and


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the cash jobs don’t pay what they used to. When the massive quantity of work that came his way in the 90s began to recede, rather than promote himself (pretentious) he simply went outside and took a 90-degree turn to the left – to Todo Santos, Mexico where he shared a palapa on 80 beach-front acres with a bobcat that lived in his rafters. Again, Dixonian thinking: Phillip arose early in the day and was asleep with the sunset, while “Bob”, being nocturnal, arose after sunset, hunted all night and returned home just before Dixon awoke. It made perfect sense to Phillip Dixon. “No mouse, no snake, Joe.” Those who know, know it’s an archive of spectacular photography – work he can do or not do and doesn’t care if or when he will ever do it again – sort of. Welcome to the world of Phillip Worthington Dixon. Don’t question it – just read. You’re about to enter the Dixon zone. JEFF DUNAS: Let’s go back to Glendora, California – to your early life. Early Dixon. PHILLIP DIXON: I’m a cross between Scottish on my father’s side and American Indian on my mother’s. As a kid, I did martial arts. My father taught hand-to-hand combat to the Special Forces. So I know all about hand-to-hand combat, and I was a competitive swimmer; I swam six hours a day for my whole childhood. My problem later was I had to medicate myself because I had to deal with humans. JD: I need to hear what it is that brought you to photography in the first place. PD: I’ll tell you the story, Joe. My buddy and I were selling LSD in our garage in Glendora. The quantity we sold was 1500 micro-grams of acid. Now they take about 100 to get high. We added food coloring in the vials we sold, so we could sell it as purple, green, whatever color acid people wanted. Now in the process of me putting the acid in the vials, it would drip on my hands. I would probably have six or seven thousand micrograms in my body. If I were sitting 41

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next to a table, I wouldn’t know what a table was, or if I was the table. I realized that it opened a different part of the brain that we don’t normally use. We were supposed to go to college and get solid knowledge, but I didn’t like the bondage of school. So I said, “Okay, I’m going to take an acid trip to try to figure out what the fuck I’m going to do in life. I got very high and thought about this intently. What I realized was this: it is easy to be complicated and difficult to be simple. I got down to the simplest form of what I was good at, which I realized was arranging things. So I thought of all the things I could do to get paid for arranging things. I thought, ah – halleluiah! I could arrange things and take a picture of them. When I came down from the trip, I got a job as a delivery boy for an old glamour photographer in Hollyweird named Bud Fraker. This meant shooting wanna-be actors. Then, when I wasn’t delivering for Fraker, I went into the darkroom and watched his assistant develop film and make prints. After work, I went back in the lab and experimented for myself. When the lab assistant quit one day and Bud needed a new guy, I told him, “I can do it, Joe.” He said, “OK Phillip – I’ll give you a test. Develop this film, and make a print for me.” I did and got the job. So I became his lab guy, processing his film and making his prints. After a while, I needed more bacon, so I looked around Hollyweird and found a job at a custom lab owned by a European guy. We had one customer who shot simulated porno. Eventually the owner wanted to go back home to Europe so the porno photographer said, “I’ll buy the lab.” Of course, he needed a guy to set it up, so I raised my hand and said, “I can do that.” So I began to work in porno – for mob guys. After a while, I realized that the guys who were shooting the porno were making more bacon than me but they didn’t shoot very well, so I told the boss, “I can do this shit.” So in the daytime I printed, and at night I shot porno. I got two girls and one guy, shot the guy with one girl, then with the other girl, shot them all three together and then shot the two girls individually then together. I used this to practice lighting. JD: What was it like working for the porno people?


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PD: The mob guy’s name was Bernie. Ed Wood worked for Bernie then, too. They made a movie about Ed Wood with Johnny Depp. The movie was bullshit. That cartoon director, whatever his name is, made the movie like an Ed Wood movie but not about Ed Wood. I remember one day, being called into the big office because the FBI was there – so I’m walking down the hall and pass Ed Wood’s office. He was frantically changing his clothes, and I asked him what he was doing. He was totally straight but he liked to dress in women’s clothes. He liked to wear angora sweaters, pearls and women’s stretch-pants under his clothes and pumps! Ed was petrified that the feds would take him downtown, find out he had ladies underwear on, and think he was a fucking homosexual! He once told me a story about being in the Second World War – and how he would have preferred getting killed to being wounded, because if he got wounded, they’d find out he was wearing woman’s underwear under his uniform! I used to go to parties at Ed’s house – there were transvestites, midgets, cut and tucks, everything. They were all really nice people. Ed was later nominated the world’s worst filmmaker in the history of film. JD: Ok – so now you’re in Hollywood shooting porno and it’s the early seventies. Then what? PD: Well, I had a very pretty girlfriend at the time, so after doing this for a while, I shot pictures of her and showed them to Playboy. What happened next was amazing: They called me up and said they wanted to buy them and publish them - over 10 pages! They had never ever done that before – bought unsolicited pictures – so I started working for them. It was 1972 or 1973. JD: I remember the pictures – a shorthaired blond girl on a barber chair. PD: Yes. So I’m shooting tits and ass for the Pajama Man 6 and then I got fed up with that, just like I had done shooting porno and quit. I’d been called to a meeting with the Playboy photographers and Pajama Man. He had put up a bunch of pictures to illustrate what he didn’t want in the magazine anymore. I was in good company. The pictures were by Helmut Newton and me. He called our pictures abstract. And I said to him, “Come on. You think a girl on her hands and knees with her ass in the air wearing matching lingerie is reality? Stick it where the sun don’t shine Pajama Man!” And I walked out forever. JD: Then you entered a period of no bacon, Joe. PD: Yes. It basically took me seven years to get another job. I realized the only job in town was shooting dresses. JD: What was your first break shooting fashion? PD: What happened was I realized I was in La La Land, and all the jobs were in Zoo York Shitty. I would never want to live in Zoo York Shitty – ugly and too many humans, so I went to the sportswear companies in La La because the only way to get Zoo York companies on my side would be if they saw my work in advertising. So I went to them and said: “I will do the pictures and the layout; I’ll do everything for X amount of money, but my name goes on the ad.” In those days no photographers got their names on ads. So I got work and they put my pictures in the magazines. What happened? My pictures looked better than the fucking editorial they were using so they started calling me up. That was the method to my madness. That’s how I started doing editorial pictures. Jimmy Z’s was one of the sportswear companies I worked for. He was a surfer with jelly belly and was making his own shorts in his garage using Velcro because he couldn’t stop eating. I went with my friend, Sep who had just gotten out of jail, to visit Jimmy. Within a year of me doing advertising, and with Sep who became a partner with Jimmy, they were a 20 million dollar company. JD: The sportswear companies were all in LaLa. They were hip and had begun to get national attention. PD: Exactly. But putting my name on the ads gave me international exposure. I worked for no bacon but I was better than their other photographers. Then I got sick of all that shit. After 15 years I got sick of shooting dresses for no-taste, no talents who wanted to tie my hands and now I’m unemployed. I lost interest and bought land in Mexico where I planted trees for seven years. I couldn’t evolve because they were regressing in taste, culture and everything. Today’s young art directors are brain-dead. Nobody home, Joe. 43

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JD: Jeanloup Sieff once remarked to me, “Today’s art directors think La Redoute [boring French fashion catalogue] is Avant Garde.” PD: True! There used to be great art directors and now you have bankers. I’d be shooting a model, aiming the camera at her and the art director, standing over on the side, would say to me, “But I can see the kitchen”!! This is how stupid some of them were. Retarded. JD: I remember you saying once that every successful photographer had but a ten-year window. PD: It takes you 20 years to get to the point where you can make bacon. Then you only have 10 years to cash in. I had the ten years, so then I went to Mexico. JD: You thought your career was over. PD: Of course. And it is over. You can’t let the business control your life. You have to control your own destiny. I lived for part of the time there with a lady but the lady went away. I didn’t want to live in Mexico alone, so now I want to sell the property. The problem is they’ve started cutting heads off down there and no one wants to buy in Mexico anymore. JD: That was unforeseeable. The plan was good. You were a pioneer in Mexico. PD: Yes. I was a pioneer in Venice too. Then bourgeois Europeans started showing up. JD: In the 90s you really started working for everyone. PD: True. I went to Anthony Mazzola at Harper’s Bazaar and said, “Let me do one layout – one shooting, and let me control it. If you like it, and it works for you commercially, then I do what I want.” So I did it – and after it was published, they got so much response that he said to me, “OK – but you can’t keep as much control.” I told him I needed $1000 per page. I would do one layout for him and one for me. Whatever you want, and whatever I want. It was good for Bazaar and good for me. I showed humans visual things they’d never thought of. I worked for a few good years for them. I had trust in my pictures. So I made a living! JD: It was the beginning of your ten years. I remember for a while you were being copied a lot - people trying on your style. PD: True – but it’s a compliment. I can always invent new things. So many of them had no depth. It wasn’t coming from their own personality or their own point of view. It was easy for them to copy, but it was coming from the obvious cosmetic surface things they saw in my work - or a technique. First you need an original idea, then comes the composition and the necessary texture and shading to enhance all that and bring your point across. They only saw the cosmetic stuff on top when they copied. I remember there was a photographer who wore makeup and fur hats. He was very successful and copied everybody. The young guys coming up saw him making lots of bacon and they started copying him and everyone with an original voice like he did. Then there was no point of view anymore. For three months they all copy this one or that one, then three months later they were all copying someone else. And you couldn’t tell one from another. In the old days, there were photographers with their own point of view and their work was beautiful. You never had to look at the credits because you could tell whose picture it was. Their inspiration was coming from within. You had Helmut Newton, Guy Bourdin, Sarah Moon; great photographers who did their own pictures. Lawrence Sackman was fantastic. JD: Your style never really changed. PD: No - I have one style, one point of view. Me. People copy me – but it’s my style. My work from the eighties and now, is the same. You like it or you don’t like it! I never really liked anything that dates pictures. If you look at my pictures from a long time ago, they’ll look as modern as what I shoot today. I used to crop out the shoes, take off the jewelry – and make it a real picture of a girl in a dress. Get a beautiful girl. If you see makeup, the makeup is not successful. You want to see a pretty girl with a pretty face – not a clown. So I always kept too much makeup out of my pictures. A lot about photography is about personal taste. Mine is about what I find beautiful. I like women to look


raw, desirable and real. I don’t like them to look like plastic dolls or clowns. Guy Bourdin made them look like dolls, which was fantastic, but not for me. When I did editorial work, I never compromised, because you had to get your point across or you didn’t get any advertising work from it. JD: Your style is your brand. PD: It’s foolish to copy people unless somebody pays you- if they paid me, I’d do whatever they wanted, but not for editorial. They don’t pay you for editorial, Joe. You do your own pictures. Now they don’t pay you and they won’t let you do your own pictures. Why would anybody do that? Now photographers PAY for their own editorial! What happened? That’s ridiculous! If you don’t GET paid anymore, at least you shouldn’t have to PAY! You can’t make a living like I did anymore. JD: You always preferred working outside rather than in the studio. PD: Tell me one other photographer who shoots in nature now? They all shoot in studios. Flat pictures against walls or seamless paper. No dimension. It’s easy. They didn’t have to know how to work with daylight, which is the most beautiful. Me, I’d shoot women in nature, which required compositions – foreground, middle-ground and background. I had to be able to see the place and see the clothes just as well. Most fashion photographers lack an eye for composition and most of their pictures have no poetry – no romance. JD: Talk about Dixon House. PD: It’s a house in which I feel comfortable. When I designed my house, I realized something about myself that I didn’t know 20 years earlier: Because of my compositional training in photography and the fact that I always photographed in nature, I was able to see and incorporate scale into my house. I could tell exactly how much height I’d need for my ceiling – for scale! I studied the building codebooks. The maximum height for houses is 25 feet and I needed 30, so I dug down 5 feet inside! JD: The natural light in the house is superb and it’s kind of naturally climate-controlled. PD: Architects don’t understand natural or artificial light. They’re mathematical. I’m visual. The house is kind of inside-outside. All the openings face south where the sun is. I can open all the South–facing walls completely. I’m observant and noticed wind comes from the northwest every day at 1pm. So, I have no openings on that side of the building. The wind never gets in to cool down the house. I have skylights on the dark side – they balance the south light in the house. JD: Tell me about moving to Mexico. Was it about the senoritas down there? PD: I love nature, not people. I was getting tired of the bullshit of my business, so I went to plan B. My idea was this: I’d built a beautiful house here in LaLa that I could sell, buy land in Mexico, and live until I go in the ground there. So I bought eighty acres, built a little hut – and lived there, planting trees – on the Pacific. No humans, Joe. JD: Don’t you want to do more work? PD: I never cared unless I got paid. Art is for rich people. I’ve never been a rich person. If someone has a budget, I will be the best I can be. As a photographer that only listens to their own inner voice, you have to be brave. Brave people don’t care about what the sheeple think. Sheeple follow brave people. JD: You’ve always had clients that gave you grief. You’ve always been fighting to do things your way. It hasn’t always led to a happy Dixon. PD: You have to fight. That’s why I quit many jobs – then I was left with nothing – so I planted trees. JD: Phillip – you’ve always had lots of European clients who appreciated your style. PD: Not always. Not anymore. They don’t seem to overstand.

JD: Why haven’t you done a book of your work? PD: At one time, when I was making money, I could have but I wasn’t ready for it then. I’m much better at making pictures now than I was 20 years ago. If you have money to throw around – OK you can do a book, do it for publicity and deduct it from your taxes. No publisher telling you what to do, costs bacon. You need to retain total control. Most of what I’ve photographed was on film so you have the cost of scanning, post production, printing it. You’re lucky to get back 20% of what you invest. A prominent photographer was here one day and asked me why I didn’t have a book – I told her “Bacon!” – I have the house, no book, Joe. The house is much more functional. JD: Art is expensive. PD: Art has always been done by trustafarians. Rich people make art and sell it to other rich people. I don’t know where that starving artist thing came from because it doesn’t work. It’s always been that way and it still is. There are exceptions to the rule, but usually artists have family money. Look at the very successful photographers who are in the art market: they come from banking families! Robert Frank for example. Eggleston’s family owned plantations in Mississippi. Salgado’s father was a rich cattle rancher. They have the family money to make the art in the first place. Then they made money because they had all the pictures to sell. The initial years making the pictures required bacon! If you spend 7 years on a project…. if I gave my camera to a fucking hobo for 7 years, and told him to aim at a subject and keep pushing the button – he’ll absolutely get something saleable, too. JD: You always respected commercial photographers over “art” photographers. PD: Listen. They are put into a situation of having their hands tied – meaning they have clients. If they can make poetry and beauty within those limitations they must have talent! Commercial photographers need real talent. Fine art photography is a luxury, Joe! Commercial photographers have to get it right immediately. That’s why I respect them. It takes talent to deliver under pressure. You’re under pressure and you have to solve problems! Lighting problems, composition, whatever. You have to know everything there is to know so you can bring that experience to bear. No time to do it again, over and over. Art photographers have all the time in the world. JD: You think of yourself purely as a commercial photographer. PD: It keeps me honest. Photography has been good to me and it’s been a struggle. I had the option of being a whore – a generic photographer like so many others – they have no point of view, but they make lots of bacon. I just make pictures. I’m a gun for hire. I’m an artist, not an art photographer. I like life. I like to straddle-lounge, Joe! JD: You wouldn’t want to drive a fast car and wear expensive suits? [gales of laughter]. PD: No, no! Why would anybody want to deal with those bad taste assholes? No! JD: New Question: Ladies in your life. PD: I’ve never had more hubba-hubba in my life than now! Listen. I’m a virtuous human being. I elevate the female so she can open her heart to me. So many of the girls that I meet haven’t experienced the heart. I’ve educated them about heart! The girls are telling the other girls about me. The others call me. Because I overstand pleasure! JD: What is it that’s truly important to you now? PD: Beauty – I only care about beauty. What I like is love. Laughter and…... NOTE: Some words represent Dixonian logic/outlook

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THE GRAND DOYENNE OF FASHION IN LA interview by

What defines the Sue Wong brand? I honor the Goddess Force — the universal feminine energy that allows women to transcend their time and place. Capturing this spirit with accessible designs of exceptional glamour and beauty, is what I revel in by being every woman’s couturier. My designs are as timeless as they are romantic. Flattering and lyrical, my gowns live a kind of magic; drawing on a potion of mystique and seduction. A SUE WONG gown takes on a power of its own. When a woman puts on SUE WONG, I want her most confident and feminine self to come out. I strive for that alchemy, where the romance of the clothing transforms a woman into a goddess — an emissary of beauty. My designs echo period style while remaining modern and utterly of the moment. Whether suffused with the sensuous Hollywood glamour of my muses - Garbo, Dietrich, Lombard - or steeped in the mystery of a Moroccan seraglio, my creations teem with romance. The house of SUE WONG is known for technical excellence as well as ornate and intricate detailing. A SUE WONG gown is meticulously and lovingly hand-beaded, embroidered and finished by true artisans, employing techniques that were once only practiced in the couture houses of Europe. My attention to detail and my garment cut are unsurpassed by my competitors. I combine the allure and elegance of iconic bygone eras with a modern sensibility to create timeless works of art. What good is fashion unless it stirs up genuine emotion? Love and beauty have a magical, transformative power. I understand and practice this power. The future of SUE WONG is to become a bigger global brand with an international presence with a heavy foray into the licensing of the SUE WONG name. The transformational experience embedded in my designs and the core SUE WONG signature iconography lends itself into expansive licensing modalities, including lifestyle.

RANDY DUNBAR

As a long time resident of Los Angeles, what is your favorite thing about LA and least favorite? Los Angeles is such an infinite cultural melting-pot. I am inspired by the entire spectrum of Life and I think this is definitely reflected in the very best that Los Angeles has to offer and surely mirrored in all Art forms: all walks of life; all colorful ethnicities. Fashion is also the fastest genre of all Art forms. I design 1,500 creations per year. The exciting pace in such a metropolis is exciting and exhilarating and I immerse myself in pulling from the multi-cultural slipstream very unique to Los Angeles itself. Regarding my favorite and least favorite aspect of Los Angeles: I love LA for her many multi-cultural aspects, the sunshine which further brings about the vibrant colors that we use here--in stark contrast to the blacks, greys and monochrome of NYC. It is a frontier Boom Town with Maverick energy—always on the vanguard of the new, the hip, the Avante-Guard. Along with that, there is the flip, seamy side of Tinseltown culture—the jagged side of tawdry Hollywood glamour and its seedy and needy players and requisite Hungry Ghosts all eager for their 15 minutes of fame and instant gratification.

Seduction is infinitely more powerful when it is withheld. I am shocked to observe how little glamour one actually sees on the Red Carpet today.

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Your clothes harken back to a glamorous time in the history of Hollywood—who defines glamour in our time? We’re living in times where mass globalization is constantly forever evolving, given the whip-lash pace that technology, international and cross-cultural communications unfold. Magazines, films, music videos, pop culture – it’s all reached such an extreme, force-fed sensationalism and excessive in-your-face exposure of skin. My SUE WONG designs are all about celebrating seduction and mystique, but I find it’s far more sensual and seductive when you engage in subtlety and a sense of restraint. Seduction is infinitely more powerful when continued on page 119


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Resplendent by Design SUE WONG’S GOWNS CAPTURE THE TIMELESSNESS OF STYLE

Photographed by Angelo Palazzo at The Mission Inn Hotel and Resort Styled by Alyssa Rose 49

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Hair - RenĂŠ Maldonado Cortez Make Up - Vanessa Venancio Stylist - Alyssa Rose Assistant - Emily Chaho Models - Jessica Endres and Annette Celine Olsen Designs by Sue Wong

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Japanese designer DAIKI SHIMIZU, born in 1991, studied pattern making, sewing and Fashion Design at BUNKA Fashion College in Japan. As a student, was nominated 3 times for the Fashion Designers Competition in Japan. In 2014, his fashion collection titled “New Generation had been accepted to the 88th SO-EN Competition in Japan. In the same year he did an internship in Antwerp Belgium with an accomplished designer and was also invited to participate in New York fashion week, Style Fashion week and the Vancouver Fashion Week. His collection is pursuing a new style through updating modern clothing, not just showing well tailored attire but also using them to tell a compelling story. 55

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D A i k i

You recently were part of Style Fashion Week in Los Angeles—why the Los Angeles market? My style of design is focused more to a cultivated women’s look , and I received an impression that the Los Angeles and the US market is the most cool and stylish At what age did you decide fashion design was going to be your career? I have been drawing since I was little and at 16 I wanted to become a creator or painter. Starting around 20 I wanted to get into fashion to spread my fashion ideas across the world.

How does that happen (becoming a fashion designer)—are you looking at movies, magazines, television? I normally check all kinds of media such as movies, magazines, television shows. I learned design at the same time as I learned pattern making and sewing. These could are easily taught, but the philosophy behind it has to be developed . Inspiration for the current collection comes from? The inspiration is coming from people’s current moods, feelings, affection, and societal environment issues such as gender segregation and inequality. They also are a combination of my inspiration from

60’-80’s style Who are your heroes? Michael Jackson! I have seen most of his exhibitions, and all of his costume designer’s books. Is menswear in your future? I would love to When the plane left Los Angeles, what was on your mind? The people, the city, and sights I saw in Los Angeles. They were all very different compared to what I can see in Japan and it was all very amazing. Thank you very much.

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Daiki Shimizu

Latitude LOS ANGELES PHOTOGRAPHY: RODNEY RAY

CREATIVE DIRECTOR: LULU MAKEUP & HAIR: YOKO KAGAYA FOR MAC COSMETIC STYLIST: OVAIS SHEIKH MODEL: AUTUMN KENDRICK VIA HOLLYWOOD MODEL MGMT All clothes by Daiki Shimizu Shoes: Sole Society Jewelry: Si & Si Jewelry


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Men's fashion designer

ON TOMSON

RON TOMSON PUTS THE CLOTHES ON AOKI, NE-YO, HOWIE MANDELL, BRUNO MARS, JASON ISAACS AND MORE...

Give us a little background on where you’re from? 36 years old, born in tel aviv Israel. BA in sociology Koc University in Istanbul turkey Why the Los Angeles market? My other passion is surf. fashion + surf LA is the place to be. At what age did you decide fashion design was going to be your career? Probably when I was 16. It’s a family thing my grandfather was a great tailor and a hat maker. In 1923 he was the only hat maker in Istanbul. I’m the 4.th generation to be in fashion. Can fashion design be taught? Yes it can but passion can’t be taught. You have to be really passionate in what you do to become good at it. How does having celebrities wear your clothes promote your line? Artists and talents are exceptional people who most of us enjoy watching and also look up to, it is flattering when they choose to wear my clothes in their public appearances. I guess it validates our style and craftsmanship too. Where do you see Los Angeles and fashion design in the future? Los Angeles is a city with a strong and unique fashion culture. I take pride in being a part of that. I see more and more talented designers choosing to base themselves here. Eventually LA will take over to be the most important trend setting city.

photographed by sarah orbanic styled by alyssa rose

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ON TOMSON

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photographed by sarah orbanic

in the art of making men’s fashion with ron tomson

styled by alyssa rose

the element style The LA FASHION MAGAZINE

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LA FASHION DESIGNER

ALTER MENDEZ

Walter, give us some background... I grew up in Manhattan Beach raised by my single mother who inspires me in every way to empower the beauty of all women. Growing up I never saw fashion as a career, I simply saw it as LIFE. Everything seemed like second nature, dressing up and picking outfits was like playing in the park; something I simply thought everyone did. At an early age, I quickly realized the impact of fashion and the power of showcasing your inner personality without saying a word. I went to Long Beach State University where I obtained my Bachelor of Arts in Fashion Design. You are known for creating quality, elegant clothing and dressing celebrities—did you set out to design for celebrities? How did that happen? I design for the everyday woman who dares to look fabulous and feel fabulous. My inspiration comes from designing for all body types creating silhouettes that will flatter all figures. However, I find it most rewarding when I see my designs make women feel confident in their own skin. I focus on quality of my esthetics due to the high importance of each garment being able to withstand time, because I strive for my designs to be timeless. I feel all women, including celebrities, appreciate this most. I have had the honor of dressing some of today’s biggest celebrities. An achievement that only seemed liked a dream when I started my design career. To be able to see a celebrity that I look up to wear one of my designs is a surreal feeling. It’s hard to describe the feeling myself, because all too often it feels like I’m still dreaming. Fashion design—gift or learned? Inspirations? Fashion is a gift that can be learned, however, only those who admire it most will succeed. My inspirations are timeless and classic beauties who have influenced our generation today and generations to come such as Audrey Hepburn. I believe it’s a mixture of both. A gift can only be mastered with training and the ability to always learn. Especially in fashion, trends, techniques and styles are always changing. It’s important to always keep your eyes open and be like a sponge! LEARN, LEARN LEARN! I also find myself being inspired by life, ones journey through a world of color, imagination, and interpretation. You’re going the retail route, tell us about that and how it will work. I opened the first Walter Mendez Store in March of this year, with a private exclusive grand opening in the works very soon. The store will consist of Walter Mendez designs, available to purchase evening gowns and cocktail dresses straight from my runway off the rack. I also hold private custom order consultations for clients who request a custom, one of a kind Walter Mendez design. Purchasing a dress is a special event of its own, it’s the buildup to an event, experience and lifelong memory. My mission with the new retail space is to make a woman’s shopping experience memorable, special, and tailored to her specific needs. The Walter Mendez Store is a woman’s ultimate dream closet with everything from cocktail dresses and gowns, to our complete custom one of a kind Walter Mendez designs. I allow my client to take a full journey with me on designing a dress from scratch. I bring in my client, and together we design a dress of their dreams. Where do you see yourself in the future, what are your expectations? I see myself, the brand, and my creative vision growing and expanding consistently. I would love to have more storefronts all over the US and eventually world wide since my consumer base has become international with online orders being processed from all over the world. I want to continue and grow my presence within the fashion industry, I see myself becoming a household name and expanding into accessories, bridal, home and a complete lifestyle brand.

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“To be able to see a celebrity that I look up to wear one of my designs is a surreal feeling. It’s hard to describe the feeling myself, because all too often it feels like I’m still dreaming.” The LA FASHION MAGAZINE

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NIGHT

MOVES

WALTER MENDEZ GOES FOR THE GLAMOUR

Photographed by Kevin Michael Schmitz

represented by Jorge Perez Reps KevinMichaelSchmitz.com Photography Assistant: Brandon Hiehle Photography Assistant: Samusu Semo Videography by Bill Palmatary at Aerial West Films AerialWestFilms.com Hair Styling by DaRico Jackson Makeup by Sarah B. Hall Wardrobe & Styling by Walter Mendez Models: Chanel Gray Represented by Wilhelmina Models Morgan Ketzner Represented by Wilhelmina Models Kimberly Samovitz Represented by DT Model Management PHOTOGRAPHED AT THE MAYAN THEATER, LOS ANGELES

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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

DRESSING

Rita McGhee is the hottest costumer in town. Her work on the hit TV show Empire has been been recognized as an essential factor in the wild success of the show. We caught up with Rita to get answers about her method of dressing the Lyons

INTERVIEW BY TONY FRERE PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOHN SKALICKY special thanks to Alita Bailey / assistant costume designer and Costume Rentals Corporation, North Hollywood

Rita McGhee is a big part of the style, the look, and the vivid lushness that defines the smash hit TV show “Empire”. Who doesn’t love watching Cookie of the Lyon dynasty sashaying confidently about in her bold colors, skintight animal prints, and heavy gold jewelry, perfecting the hip-hop royalty look? Or her ex-husband, Lucious Lyon, the patriarch of the show, who presents in an old school style, dressing in sharp, tailored suits with an ever-present silk scarf for extra dazzle? In Empire, fashion has become part of the story line; the color and tone of the outfit changes with the character’s mood, but McGee is quick to point out that the dressing of the characters is hugely collaborative. She garners input from the actors themselves, has a wardrobe team, and a great network of prominent people loaning her clothes. With Empire’s viewership climbing to an estimated 16.7 million viewers, Rita proves herself to be a trendsetter and a voice of authority in costume design. —Niki Smart 77

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Tony: Are you given the script ahead of time? Rita: Yes, when I interviewed for the job, I watched the pilot then met with the creators and the producers. I explained my creative process and what I thought I could add to the characters of the show. We get the script ahead of time and have production meetings. I make my notes on the current scene that we’re shooting and I evaluate each character’s talents and take into account who they are, what their clothes are, or what the armor they wear for their protection is. I also consider their wardrobe mentality, taking into account how they feel when they wear their costumes, as that factors into how I represent them. All of this show inspires the clothing - the music, the color, how the characters see themselves in that world, and how they wish to be portrayed. All of that is part of my research; part of my process. Tony: You know, it really pays off, because every second on screen is maximized by the way they dress. Plus the color coding is really great. Rita: Yeah, I choose the colors and put my line together for the show, then I stand back and view everything before the clothes go out to the actors. I look at each color, and the in-between, and how it all comes together. Because the acting is superb and the writing is superb, the Empire gives us everything we want. It gives us the soap opera, the drama, the family, the family drama, and within that, it gives us fashion, music, beauty, sex, scandal. It gives us everything we want in a show. Tony: I presume they give you a good budget? Rita: Actually, the first season wasn’t a great budget, but if you want to do business in Hollywood, you have to stay within your budget. So I sent my shoppers out to find what I needed. We had great people helping us with certain fashion items that we simply couldn’t afford. For example, Monique Mosely, who is married to our musical director Timbaland, loaned us key pieces that we could never have afforded on our budget. Then Janet Bailey, the first wife of Philip Bailey from the band “Earth, Wind & Fire”, loaned us Cookie’s signature furs. Wearing these items from “real rock star wives” adds authenticity - and then Cookie also wore a dress from Target and “rocked” it.


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California and started working as an intern to a production assistant. I started as Tony: Right! She Cookified it. an intern but soon moved up to a PA position working with costume designer, Rita: Exactly - cookified it. My team of expert fashion finders go out and shop Ruth Carter. Ruth took me under her wing and I learned everything from her high end boutiques plus low end stores in order to meet the budget. But for all that I could. She remains my inspiration and my mentor to this day. the costumes, it is really the characters who bring them to life. Tony: Can you say who your favorite person is to dress, I Tony: Speaking of budgets, how was it dressing Naomi Camp- mean it would seem obvious that it would be Cookie, but is bell? it? Rita: Well, that was a blessing because we couldn’t afford her at all, or anything Rita: You know, I’ve been asked that question so many times and to be honest, I that she wore. Naomi had on one skirt that cost $20,000 – and that’s basically like to dress them all. Each character has different characteristics and different our entire budget for an episode. Luckily Naomi came with her own clothes, so quirks, and it is a lot of fun addressing each personality. Like for example, today all we did was call her, tell her what the scene was, how many costume changes I want to be Cookie confident, or today I want to be Boo Boo Kitty, or Anika she had, and where the scene would take place. We’d also give her an idea of fierce, and I’m going to wear my red suit and I’m going to splash it with pearls. what Hakeem would be Then for the guys, I’m going wearing and then she’d bring to show Jamal’s kindness in in a variety of clothes. Naomi and a T-shirt. I can give “Each character has different characteristics and jeans is fantastic to work with. free reign to all the different Both her and Courtney Love different quirks, and it is a lot of fun addressing personalities living inside of were a dream to work with. me, so really, it’s fun to dress They were both 100% profeseach personality. Like for example, today I want them. It’s like I get to fill in a sional and treated the crew giant coloring book. very well. I dressed Courtney Tony: One more imto be Cookie confident, or today I want to be Love, but Naomi Campbell portant question, and came with her own clothes. Boo Boo Kitty, or Anika fierce, and I’m going to it’s about Lucious and Tony: Do you ever pull his scarf. Was that diwear my red suit and I’m going to splash it with rectly inspired maybe anything out of your own closet to dress by Quincy Jones or pearls. Then for the guys, I’m going to show the cast? is it more to signify a Rita: I do. I had a Gucci mogul, or royalty? Jamal’s kindness in jeans and a T-shirt. I can give Rita: Yeah, you know, it’s a dress that Taraji wore in a flashback scene. And one combination. It was inspired free reign to all the different personalities living by Terrence himself and that’s of the directors brought in some evening clothes that is great about working inside of me, so really, it’s fun to dress them. It’s what she doesn’t wear anymore, with these actors. Terrence and the girl who plays Anika likes to wear scarves, and like I get to fill in a giant coloring book.” wore one of those dresses. It luckily, this adds to his regal was a good combination, plus presence, plus it throws in we had clothes from the real a dash of color which helps wives of these rock star music legends, and that helped to build the characters showcase his personality. I like to dress Lucious in royalty colors, like dark reds, even more. blues and purple. He’s not the guy who just wears a black suit or a brown suit. I Tony: Yeah, you can see it, and feel it. That’s great. researched styles of 1920s gangsters and 1950s mobsters, and I took notes from Rita: See? You can feel it. Exactly! the actors, and that’s how I help build on their characters. They have to really Tony: How has the show affected you personally? believe the part that they’re playing, and having the right outfit and the right Rita: The show has had a huge affect on me in a very positive way. The great accessories, really helps support this. Lucious Lyon’s suits are rich and textured, thing is, a lot of different vendors and designers are now reaching out to me, and when his personality changes, his color tones change accordingly. For exwhich is excellent, because we can possibly use them on the show. I worked on ample, at a funeral he wore a white suit, because he’s like that evil angel that you getting high end designers to give us clothes for Season 1, and although some find yourself thinking is angelic, but underneath you know he’s not. said no, I think they may change their minds for Season 2. People in general Tony: [laughing] Exactly! are very excited about the show and want to be involved, and no matter in what Rita: So the colors play a large part in the characters outfit. capacity they reach out to me, I try to respond and encourage them. I tell them Tony: Will there ever be an Empire clothing line? to keep their passion alive and to reach for their dreams. Rita: Yes. We’re working on that right now, and I think Season 2 is going to take Tony: Did you go to school for what you do? off and create an Empire inspired fashion line. Rita: I graduated from Howard University where I studied fashion merchandisTony: Yeah, why not, we’re tired of Mad Men. ing and business administration. When I graduated, I was on track to become Rita: Mad Men, Sex in the City, Scandal…all those shows impacted the fashion a buyer in a store although I didn’t want to do that. I wanted to work in TV and world. film. I grew up in Guam where I worked at the duty free store (which was like Tony: Right. I look forward to the Empire fashion line. Well working at a mini market) and then I also worked as a hula dancer on a cruise Rita, I want to thank you so much for your time and good boat. I worked my regular retail job during the week, and was a hula dancer on luck to you. the weekend. Finally I was like, I can’t do this anymore. So I left Guam, moved to Rita: Thank you. 79

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IMAGINING

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE CAST AND MORE

you are one of the few people who have actually not seen the hot TV show, Empire, let’s set this up for you. First some facts: Wesley Snipes was originally set to play Luscious Lyon until Taraji Henson insisted on Terrence Howard with whom she has worked before. Much of Cookie’s memorable lines are improvised and her character was inspired by Joan Collins character from the TV Show, Dynasty. Taraji has revealed that her inspiration for the character, Cookie, comes from her own father. The show itself is a hit snagging a 6.5 rating among adults 18-49 and 16.7 million total viewers. First of all, that’s a record for the TV ratings rule breaking series and up 71% and 69% respectively from the results of the show’s debut back on January 7. While most people think the inspiration for the show was Dynasty, it is in fact King Lear that served as a source of inspiration, as well as the Broadway play, The Lion in Winter. Drama! And then there is this: The show will be returning September 23, so mark your calendar, set your DVD, because Cookie and company are coming back! Now, let’s introduce you to the cast.  While so much is known, we have made some educated guesses about a few things. We’re fans of astrology, so sitting around we imagined what zodiac sign each character might be; we even imagined what colognes and perfumes, socks and underwear, they might sport, just for the fun of it. 81

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Cookie Lyon Taraji P. Henson is

From the first appearance of Loretha “Cookie” Lyon the audience knew it was best not to mess with her. Fierce, determined, a mother lion, Cookie as played by Taraji P. Henson is a force to be reckoned with—just ask her husband, Lucious Lyon. Her satorial style is unique: a blend of old and new (as dressed by Rita McGhee) that reveals a woman fully in charge of her life and her wardrobe. FAVORITE COLORS

Purple and Gold MOST OFTEN SEEN WEARING

Animal Prints

PROBABLE ASTROLOGICAL SIGN

Leo

action-oriented and driven by the desire to be loved and admired, Leos have an air of royalty about them. They love to be in the limelight. Ruled by the sun, Leo has a source of infinite energy and optimism. They’re straightforward and don’t mince words.

BEST QUOTE (TO DATE)

“You want Cookie’s nookie—ditch the bitch.”

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BEST QUOTE

“I’m not watering my music down for no tweens.”

MOST OFTEN SEEN WEARING

Denim, down jackets, high top sneakers and bling “I’m not watering my Bryshere Y. Gray is music down for no tweens.”

Hakeem Lyon Hakeem is disrespectful, ruthless and spoiled - he wants the glitz and glamour but lacks the drive to get there.

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PROBABLE ASTROLOGICAL SIGN

Pisces

Governed by a duality, a struggle of the spiritual soul within the physical body, Pisces are often intensely interested and skilled at a wide variety of things and tend to learn by absorption as opposed to logic. Can tend towards being unrealistic.


PROBABLE ASTROLOGICAL SIGN

Scorpio

A powerful sign, Scorpio men are moody, dark and sexy. Scorpio men are mysterious with an oft times piercing gaze that leaves those in their path feeling exposed and uneasy. Scorpios are deep and secretive, and keep a lot hidden. Even though passionate, powerful and ambitious, Scorpios prefer to act from the shadows so as not to draw attention to themselves. These men can be temperamental and if you cross them, watch out – you will not be forgiven and revenge will be sought.

FAVORITE COLORS

Burgundy and dark blue

BEST QUOTE

Dark, cold, with a huge thirst for power -Lucious is homophobic and unapologetic about it.

Lucious Lyon Terrence Howard is

“Let’s look at it from a mathematical perspective. Your girlfriend has a girlfriend. Add that up. Two girlfriends. It’s a mathematician’s dream.” The LA FASHION MAGAZINE

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BEST QUOTE

“There was always something missing, Dad. A void that I filled with darkness, but now I’m getting to know my God. And he is filling that void with a higher purpose.”

PROBABLE ASTROLOGICAL SIGN

Gemini

Duality is very much an aspect to any Gemini and Andre is no exception. He has that Gemini energy— ambitious, sexual and unpredictable.

FAVORITE COLORS

Grey and blue

MOST OFTEN SEEN WEARING

Shiny suits

Andre Lyon Trai Byers is

The Lyon’s eldest son is smart, devious, manipulative and determined. He tries to make up for his lack of musical talent by winning his father’s favor. Has a high opinion of himself – suffers from bipolar disorder.

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PROBABLE ASTROLOGICAL SIGN

Libra

He has Libra good looks and a strong sense of fair play. He certainly is artistic and has an intrinsic sense of style—and yet—he’s not immune to power and hostile takers... probably a Libra with Scorpio rising.

FAVORITE COLOR

White

MOST OFTEN SEEN WEARING

Jamal Lyon Jussie Smollett is

Newsboy hats, T-shirts and Arabic-inspired suits laced with gold

Jamal is loyal to those who are good to him. He’s a sensitive soul who is vulnerable, yet brave and strong.

BEST QUOTE

“My obedience is no longer for sale.” The LA FASHION MAGAZINE

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Y E K T A

Designer: Ekaterina Kukhareva Available at: kukhareva.com

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R U O

F A C E

R F O

A

R I D E Photography Ryan Jerome Stylist Erick Stryker Hair & Make Up Rocky Calder贸n Production Eggy Production hand drawing by Hanna brenner katz

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(Neon yellow plastic peep toe wedges) Designer: Ekaterina Kukhareva Available at kukhareva.com

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(Large cuff - high polish) Designer: Charles Albert Available at: charlesalbert. com

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Black leather jacket with gold studs and bald eagle on sleeves Designer: Old Gringo Available at: oldgringodirect.com

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The city of Milan, well known since the Middle Ages as a hub for fashion, is most likely the birthplace of the name used today to describe the profession of Hat making. Today we call them Milliners and we visually explore the works of Gladys Tamez, who creates and produces fine hand crafted hats in Los Angeles. Designer Gladys Tamez moved into hat-making after being inspired during a chance visit to a 4th generation artisanal milliner in Vitoria, Spain. There she witnessed the secret wonders, tradition, craft, tools and timeless beauty of hat-making. She imbues her work with these traditions to this day and every hat is hand-made to order in her atelier in Los Angeles. Gladys’ work is worn by many stars of rock and roll and film. Her hats are used by top stylists in Hollywood and beyond.

it PHOTOGRAPHED BY ROBERT JOHN KLEY www.rjkphoto.com FASHION STYLIST Dara Schafer www.daraschafer.com MAKEUP & HAIR Phoebe Dawson using MAC www.phoebedawson.com MODEL Nikki Haroldson at PhotoGenics ALL HATS ARE GLADYS TAMEZ MILLINERY handcrafted in Los Angeles, CA www.gladystamez.com

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to be you


HAT: Gladys Tamez Millinery TOP: Catherine Fulmer SKIRT: Stil. www.stil-足la.com

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HAT: Gladys Tamez Millinery TOP: Camp Collection shopcamp.com SKIRT: Catherine Fulmer

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HAT: Gladys Tamez Millinery TOP: Khalo www.khalo.com.au PANTS: Lauren Stucky shop.laurenstucky.com

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HAT: Gladys Tamez Millinery TOP: Lauren Stucky shop.laurenstucky.com

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HAT: Gladys Tamez Millinery TOP: Fete PANTS:Rosel

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JUNE BRIDES

ridal

moments PHOTOGRAPHED BY

ANGELA PETERMAN STYLED BY

DARA SCHAFER

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LEFT TOP: Sissae Qipao www.sissae.com SKIRT: Mac Dougal www.macduggal.com CUFF: Charles Albert www.charlesalbert.com RIGHT BLAZER: Kathryn Hynes www.kathrynhynes.com JUMPSUIT: Peggy Hartanto www.peggyhartanto.com SHOES: Stylist’s own EARRINGS: Pearl Paradise White South Sea pearlparadise.com

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LEFT DRESS: Ludmila Corlateanu www. ludmilacorlateanu.com RIGHT DRESS: Antonio Torres available at For The Stars Fashion House www.forthestars.com

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BODYSUIT: Dar Sara www.darsara.com

Photographed & Produced by Angela Peterman angelapeterman.com Photo Assistant: Bridger Clements Instagram@bridger Make-Up Artist Aaron Barry Instagram: @abhairmakeup www.aaronbarryhairmakeup.com Hair Stylist Timothy Willy Instagram: @timmywilly timothywilly.com Wardrobe Stylist Dara Schafer DGREPS www.dgreps.com Simha Hadid New Mark Models Instagram: @SIMHA newmarkmodels.com Marina Vorobeva Envy Models envymodelmanagement.com

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HEADPIECE: House of Halos available at For the Stars Fashion House www.forthestars.com

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DRESS: Ludmila Corlateanu www.ludmilacorlateanu.com

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Fashion Wedding Story:

The SymbolicCrusade by

J o e K o n das h

Photographed by Jay Dixon & Kevin Michael Schmitz

O

ur princess represents the Future of Fashion as she dares to break away and emerge from the bleak style of the Dark Ages of Design to a new order of simplicity, purity, and elegance. Her radiance illuminates the fabric of her white gown and transcends all mortal boundaries as a call for a Knight to defend the idealistic and creative progress of her vision for a New Age. She is the muse, the one who inspires this Crusade for the Future of Fashion. She calls on her unicorn to search the kingdom for a noble and worthy warrior to save the realm from intruders determined to keep the reign of the past alive. A Knight in Shining Armor has heard her call and arrives to defend her honor, win her heart, and protect a New Age of Fashion. He sees her majestic silhouette and is awestruck by the sword of love. This binds each to the others heart and elevates their quest for the destiny of Fashion. The Day is won and the falcon is set to deliver the message to the kingdom that an era has passed, change is in the midst, and a new time has come. Talent: “Celebrity Fashion� Photographer Kevin Michael Schmitz and his New Wife Rhadha Khaliana Schmitz Wardrobe Styling by Eric Himel Armor & Weaponry by Steaphen Fick at Davenriche Makeup by Wallett Represented by LOOK Artists Hair by Keke & Joelle by LOOK Artists Falconry by James Horses by Allison Chapleau Photography Assisting by Eric, Myken & Marijka Auffhammer Photographed on location at Castillo Di Amoroso. a 13th Century Designed Tuscan Palace in Napa Valley

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Dress: ARIA Brides, $1200, ariadress.com Earrings: Aqua, $28, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center Necklace: Officina Bernardi, $270, officinabernardi.com Bracelets: (l to r) Nadri, $65 and Nadri $50, both Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center RIng: 5 Carat Pink Sapphire Custom Ring by H&B Jewelry Los Angeles

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Dress: Alfred Angelo, $1299, alfredangelo.com Earrings: Aqua, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center Necklace: Kenneth Jay Lane, $250, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center

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Photography Assisting by Eric, Myken & Marijka Auffhammer Wardrobe Credits: Dress: Alfred Angelo, $1499, alfredangelo.com Earrings: Roni Blanshay, $348, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center Dress: Justin Alexander, $1800. justinalexanderbridal.com Necklace: Kate Spade, $178, katespade.com Bracelet: Kate Spade, $148, katespade.com

Dress: Alfred Angelo, $1499, alfredangelo.com Earrings: Roni Blanshay, $348, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center

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Dress: Alfred Angelo, $1399, alfredangelo.com Bracelet: Kate Spade, $148, katespade.com Earrings: Aqua, $20, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center Necklace: Kenneth Jay Lane, $250, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center

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Dress: Alfred Angelo, $1299, alfredangelo.com Earrings: Aqua, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center Necklace: Kenneth Jay Lane, $250, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center Dress: Justin Alexander, $1800, justinalexanderbridal.com Earrings: Roni Blanshay, $300, Bloomingdale’s Beverly Center Sword & Jacket by Davenriche

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B2B FashionBUSINESS

PROFILE M

H

eet Heger Industrial, a full-service industrial real estate company offering brokerage, property management, and investment and consulting services. Having been around for nearly six decades, Heger Industrial has made it possible for business owners, property owners, and investors to obtain the greatest value for industrial and special-use real estate throughout the West Coast. Heger Industrial believes in the power of personal relationships, and has strongly implemented its well-known standards of giving back to its industry and the communities it serves. This industry and community has now expanded to include the fashion realm, with the location being near downtown LA’s Fashion District. Fashion and charity often go hand in hand as well, as seen with Art Hearts Fashion Week (partnered with The Aids Healthcare Foundation), Style Fashion Week, etc. The Heger team strives to give back to its communities through The Heger Foundation, which actively supports local charities, nonprofit organizations, and philanthropic events. Leading team members of this new office are now focusing their energy on not only the growth of this new location, but increasing their availability for potential clients in the fashion industry. Philip Dray and Stephan Ktorza, the Senior Vice President & Managing Directors of the new Downtown Los Angeles location, have recently teamed with Jon Reno, the managing Director of the office in Commerce for the marketing of their newest listing at 2014-2016 E 15th street to make it happen. With the vast scale of real estate the company has access to, its services prove useful for locations for highW-fashion editorial photo shoots, fashion videos, or even larger film or video productions. Heger can provide the tools for the decision-makers of larger fashion companies to find the perfect real estate for an office or a new location. Fashion is an extremely diverse industry with various types of businesses, each with specific needs. The Heger Team prides itself in its ability to personally assist its clients with all of their real estate needs, big or small. With one of the highest client retention rates in the business, Heger Industrial has taken the next step in its business and is widening its reach for potential clientele. By opening its fourth and newest office location this year in downtown Los Angeles, the company has created an opportunity for the members of the fashion industry to utilize the services it provides. What a better place to launch this new branch than in the heart of the Fashion Epicenter that is Los Angeles.

Company President & CEO, Robert G. Thornburgh, SIOR, CCIM stated: “This has been part of a long-term strategic plan, designed to continue providing an exemplary level of service to our valued clients in downtown and the surrounding areas. Our growth is a direct result of the amazing people at Heger whose integrity and passion for real estate is evident in everything they do.”

Heger Industrial 445 S. Figueroa Street 31st Floor Los Angeles, CA 90071 Hegerindustrial.com Contact us for more information on 213.880.5250

Philip Dray

Stephan Ktorza


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THE POOLS SUMMER OF

Photographed by Kevin Michael Schmitz Represented by Jorge Perez Reps www.KevinMichaelSchmitz.com Photographed by Robyn Wilson at www.Anywhereiroam.co.nz Photographed by Chad Jackson www.ChadJacksonPhoto.com Photography Assistant: Miguel Ostos Makeup & Hair by Gunnar Schendera at Golddigger Cosmetics Wardrobe Styling by Holli Kingsbury & Jeile Marie Models: Elisandra Tomacheski by NEXT Model Management Julia LaCour Represented by Front Management Fernande Uester Represented by Front Management Photographed at The Setai Miami Beach Swimwear by: Ellis Beach Wear ellisbw.com Paradizia Swimwear www.ParadiziaSwimwear.com Lisa Blue Swimwear www.LisaBlue.com

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Photographed by Chad Jackson Swimwear by Ellis Beach Wear ellisbw.com

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Photographed by Robyn Wilson Swimwear by Ellis Beach Wear ellisbw.com

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Photographed by Kevin Michael Schmitz Swimwear by Ellis Beach Wear ellisbw.com

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Sue Wong

continued from page 47 it is withheld. I am shocked to observe how little glamour one actually sees on the Red Carpet today. I think we’re at a point where we’ve desensitized ourselves so much by force-fed (skin) sensationalism, that we’re starving for a return to a sense of TRUE Glamour. Imagine the ultra-sexy quality of illusion yoke, which is synonymous with my SUE WONG Collection; rather than seeing mass exposure of skin which might tantalize on immediate impact, but then the effect is only good for shock value. The mystique embedded in SUE WONG designs delivers a romanticism that is timeless and indelibly elegant. It is sexy with class; not sexy with trash. You’ve recently opened your store online and have included your foray into beauty products, how is that going? It has been a very exciting time for the SUE WONG brand. I have always wanted to explore and share my mantra: Beauty ~ Magic ~ Transformation in ways that illustrate the alchemic and healing powers of Beauty. I truly believe that beauty has the power to transform because it is the manifestation of our creative essence, a signature from our higher selves. In such a pure and honest form it is alchemic and this alchemy procures Magic which in turn creates Transformation. I design with specific intention to liberate, to awaken the Feminine Divine Goddess in each and every woman. The SUE WONG Eau de Parfum is a unique fragrance befitting for a true Goddess, or for any woman who wants to connect with her Feminine Divine. I personally designed the SUE WONG fragrance, which took about a year to develop. I also designed the Art Deco 1920’s packaging and black glass bottle. With this launch, I unveil the SUE WONG Eau de Parfum - the quintessential “Esprit” of the SUE WONG universe: romantic, alluring, sensual, evocative, timeless, nostalgic and poetically lush.

The official SUE WONG online boutique presents the best of SUE WONG gowns under four diverse categories: New Arrivals, Cocktail, Evening and Wedding – all of which deliver what women need from fashion today for every possible occasion; from streamlined, elegant options to haute couture inspired show-stoppers. These are now available for immediate purchase. Transitioning from Style Fashion Week to Art Hearts, how did you find the experience? I am a maximalist and I don’t compromise on my vision. Simultaneously, I am also a pragmatist and believe in manifesting my dreams, visions and not merely conceptualizing them. I am very good with on the spur of the moment decision-making, which is what my typical default working day is all about. In this regard I am an alchemist. I do actualize my vision regardless of what I am given to work with. Naturally, the more opulent and magical the venue, the greater and easier it is to deliver the operatic scale of my runway shows. The response to both my FAIRIES & SIRENS Spring 2015 and MYTHOS & GODDESSES Fall 2015 runway shows was an oversold capacity and a resounding success that continues to be the talk of the town. Regardless of the collaborators or the organization, I always aspire to delivering show-stopping, jaw-dropping, hypnotic, operatic spectacles as the platform on which I unveil my creations. For more information visit www.suewong.com

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Profile for The LA Fashion

The LA Fashion Magazine Summer 2015  

The LA Fashion Magazine Summer 2015 Issue www.theLAfashion.com

The LA Fashion Magazine Summer 2015  

The LA Fashion Magazine Summer 2015 Issue www.theLAfashion.com

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