After a week of gallivanting around Los Angeles, even the most fervent East Coaster can feel the pull to the West Coast.
During our stay in the land of sunshine, beaches, and too much traffic, we began to feel the same, and found a quartet of stellar boutiques to consummate the affair. Here are four L.A. boutiques we don't mind hitting when we're burning air miles.
1. Clare Vivier
3339 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90026
This sunny Parisian-inspired shop in Silver Lake is all about handmade accessories: brilliantly colored top handle totes, minimally-designed iPad cases, and foldover striped clutches line the shelves—and p.s. everything can be monogrammed. CV is also the only shop in L.A. that sells fancy Chateau Marmont candles, aside from the upscale hotel itself, so make a note of it.
2. DNA Clothing
Venice, 411 Rose Avenue, Venice, CA 90291
Hollywood location, 8000 Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90046
Quirky, boho-hippie Venice is at the tipping point of yuppie these days. Nonetheless, the casual beach/surfer vibe rules here. For the last two decades, DNA Clothing has been the go-to shop where locals stock up on beach essentials like printed ponchos, T-shirts, hoodies, and sunnies. On trend and on the cheap.
3. Dream Collective
1404 Michetorena, Los Angeles, CA 90026
Another gem in Silver Lake is Dream Collective, a boutique recently opened by local jewelry maker Kathryn Bentley. Stained glass windows set the stage for Bentley’s intricate, affordable costume jewelry collection. Other local artists sell wares like tote bags, art, and footwear at the shop, too. But we went for the jewels: a slender brass and enamel cuff in a multi-colored chevron print looks simple, but really pops against a plain white tee. And the turquoise-hued, oversized triangle ring in brass? We’re suckers for a chic statement ring.
4. Left Bank
2479 Fletcher Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90039
This quaint little thrift store/art gallery is located in the up-and-coming neighborhood of Atwater Village. Jacqueline Goodman, who runs the shop with her mom and sister, stocks the French-inspired boutique with a curated collection of apparel and footwear (both new and vintage), as well as housewares and accessories—some locally made, others imported from France. It’s a bit like raiding a tiny flea market or your cool aunt’s closets—trinkets and treasures are everywhere.
For some of us the aughties were all about the emergence, or re-emergence, of dance punk (summed up by James Murphy as "live drums and synthesizers") and no one did it better than DFA, the New York record label founded by James Murphy, Tim Goldsworthy, and the often unsung Jonathan Galkin. Directed by Max Joseph, the vid does a nice tidy job of summing up the label and its sound, artists, and attitude with brevity and a sense of humor—and also gives us a gimpse inside the label offices and studio.
From the same technology that is used to design buildings, Hot Pop Factory, the jewelry line known for its 3D-printed style, has produced yet another interesting collection. The Boreal collection is made with recycled cherry and polymer wood from the Boreal forest in Canada. The collection is as unique as the forest itself; the chain and closure on each necklace appear exceptionally delicate when paired with the bold design of the wood pendant. There are eight different styles available from $74-$98.
Folks who play with flowers for a living haven't always been on the radar of forward-thinking visual culture vultures—cue nightmares of the most expected arrangement in the whole world ever: stark red roses surrounded by the sweet white buds of baby’s breath. But when a group of young, cool, Brooklyn-based florists cropped up, it marked a sea change in the world of floral arrangement. Now, it’s becoming the norm to expect artful, inventive, overflowing arrangements and bouquets, often for magazine photo spreads, and sometimes for picture-perfect weddings. Our favorite of the bunch is Amy Merrick, who spends her time arranging overwhelmingly beautiful bouquets for both high-end events and favorite publications like Kinfolk (she was the mastermind behind the flowers-as-ice-cream shoot from the magazine’s latest issue.) She documents everything on her beautiful blog, which helps us feel a little more connected to visions of natural beauty, even while in front of a computer screen. And when she's not styling for editorial shoots, Merrick is imparting her skills to aspiring arrangers, teaching flower classes in Brooklyn and on a Washington state flower farm. Keep an eye on her blog and Twitter feed for updates.
Marvel at Merrick's portfolio online.
Ice cream flower photos by Parker Fitzgerald
Confessionals are inherently uncomfortable spaces. The very purpose of their existence, to allow parishoners to privately unload their transgressions to a member of the clergy—and God—is a tense and awkward premise. While modern places of worship have brighter and more inviting spaces to confess, the confessionals photographer S. Billie Mandle shot for her "Reconciliation" series come from classic church design: dark and intimidating spaces with dramatic light pouring through privacy screens. [via Wired]