D&A was awesome. The show and the booth were the right size, the atmosphere was sparkling clean, and buyers were interesting and interested. had a great time, made great contacts.
As a city, LA surprised me a little. We stayed at the LAAC, a reciprocal club to our local Cumberland Club, and it couldn’t have been more comfortable and convenient- only two blocks from the show, meaning we could avoid the car rental issue and driving, one of my least favorite bits about a new city.
(by the way, I’ve made a LAAC photo album on facebook, for those interested in the club stuff.)
I swear, the rooms and the club looked like they were furnished right out of Restoration Hardware, very sexy dark sleek masculine. Not that I mind that look at all.
It’s a funny thing about appearances: I always imagine my line as it looks in my studio- against a backdrop of old wood and crumbly bricks and cobblestone. Or as it looks on the model- clean cut, well fit, against a warm clean background.
Day zero of the show was set up, and we’re in this white industrial space, chrome/ pale wood/ white booths. I bought chrome metal hangars for traveling to the show- lighter and pack smaller. And I’m sort of shocked by how my line looks outside of it’s natural environment- it’s super bright, it’s got lots of items (I brought about 90 pieces, albeit small ones, for a 5′ booth.) There’s a lot of contrast.
Generally speaking, I don’t like a lot of visual contrast: I like to organize the store by colors, and my closet and books by colors. I love color, but I don’t like contrasting colors next to each other so much.
But as you can see in photo one, that is what I’d ended up making. However, I ended up feeling really happy about it, and felt like it was very well-received. The entire thing was energizing and inspiring.
So, back to LA: since we had no car, we were mostly exploring the 5 square blocks around the show and the hotel. This was downtown, i.e. not the rich cool LA, but the place where the banks are, bordering on the fashion district. (fyi, fashion districts usually look really grungy- and this one was. piles upon piles of machines, fabric rolls, etc organized very little. ) A standard average sewing supply shop we walked into had hundreds of industrial machines, just pushed up against each other in the center of the floor.
There were far, far more homeless/ insane/ drugged out people on the streets then I’ve seen in any city before: we think Portland has a large homeless population, but in LA downtown the homeless people were far more visible.
Everywhere, the city was detailed with decorative arts built, I presume, in the 10s and 20s. It was older than I’d expected.
and the food was really, really good. Almost everywhere we went the menu was vegetarian friendly. I’d really recommend The Perch, a rooftop bar / restaurant decorated in an (authentic-seeming) Art Nouveau style.
The only thing missing in downtown LA was good coffee. Nobody seems to care about a decent latte. The first morning there we were walking around looking for one and happened upon this cute little street with a middle eastern restaurant, a french cafe, and it all just looked so good- we started walking to the cafe hoping for a good coffee and then see the camera crews. “no wonder it looks so good, it’s totally art directed.” – it was a movie shooting. A little bit embarrassing.