The laid-back Los Angeles lifestyle lends itself to a casual wardrobe that can almost seem like an afterthought. But don’t be fooled. Tinseltown is full of fashionistas ready and waiting to get their groove on, especially when it comes to making waves in a sartorial way. That said, following are five of the city’s top style creators, offering everything from trippy headpieces to stunning stilettos to beautiful ball gowns and everything in between.
Gai Gherardi and Barbara McReynolds
L.A. Eyeworks Wide World Headquarters
820 North La Brea Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90038
Some wardrobe staples absolutely need to be worn on a daily basis and great eyeglass designers understand this conundrum. Who are the best in the business? Gai Gherardi and Barbara McReynolds of l.a. Eyeworks fame. These two women are true visionaries in all senses of the word as the pair consistently comes up with ways to fix your eyesight with cutting-edge creations in limited editions that frame your face in such a way that your eyeglasses soon become your signature sartorial statement. And that’s important because, let’s face it, what you wear in order to actually see polishes off an outfit like no other accessory known to any true fashionista on Earth, and especially those who toll in Tinseltown.
Internationally known jewelry designer Loree Rodkin is on the scene in Los Angeles to create trends worn around the world. From full-on jointed finger covers to oversized statement necklaces worn around a bare shoulder to drop earrings dripping in diamonds, this Hollywood-based artist’s vision is realized in a look that is both modern and medieval but still beyond the realm of standard steampunk. Although all kinds of notorious rockers and surly actors have favored Rodkin’s timeless treasures, FLOTUS Michelle Obama is also one of the crowd, having worn her creations at the inaugural ball.
Claire Pettibone Couture
For that special occasion, whether it be your wedding or your Oscars debut, picking Claire Pettibone is a great bet for those yearning for a romantic look. This Los Angeles-based designer who studied at Otis Parsons School of Design in the City of Angels pulls out all the stops to come up with luxurious garments made with style, grace and a lot of lace and embroidery found in Europe. Each of Claire’s pieces — many of which are inspired by the world of classical ballet — feel as if the garment has had a past life yet are living in the present to the best vintage modern has to offer.
Related: Best Gown and Dressmakers in LA
Jerome C. Rousseau
Talk about fashion forward. Quebec-born Jerome C. Rousseau has the world at his feet while creating a distinctively edgy look in the form of sexy stilettos and bodacious booties that shine at every high-profile party and on every Tinseltown red carpet. From Miranda Kerr to Kristen Stewart to Zooey Deschanel and more, a bevy of superstars have been spotted wearing a sensational pair of pumps from this shoe-meister’s glittery collections. So, if you’re going to be running around in a pair of heels on a Hollywood runway or at a premiere event any time soon, consider making those special shoes a pair by Rousseau in order to invite high-level compliments from even the most competitive footwear enthusiasts rocking Tinseltown in 2013.
Louise Green Millinery Co.
1616 Cotner Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Louise Green can top a head in so many ways. Her fedoras are as smashing as her fascinators, her accent materials of choice — from flowers to feathers to crystals — always please and her color palette is as rich as a master’s paint box. This Westsider, born and bred in Britain, has been coming up with smashing styles in Los Angeles since 1987, working up to making her sprawling hat factory a highly successful, high-end operation that is arguably one of the tops in the nation.