Last night was Fashion’s Night Out. The neo-holiday is a nebulous hybrid of fashion hang out, fashion celebration, and fashion buying. The Night is now a worldwide occurrence that gets lots of people out of their homes and into stores. We’re still not entirely sure what the point of it is; however, we checked out the District La Brea event and had a pretty good time.
La Brea had a lot to offer, spanning food trucks to store openings to music. We began at South La Brea and 2nd and wandered up the Westside of the street, turning back South after crossing at 1st, diving into what the Eastside of the street was offering. Nearly all the stores on this strip were open, some with events and some simply trying to catch foot traffic. If you were unaware, the District is going to become the new shopping corridor.
Our first stop was the brand new A+R. Truth be told, we had no idea they had opened a new store and we were so pleasantly surprised to find it. The space is markedly bigger than the Abbot Kinney location and is a cause for Eastsiders to rejoice that they no longer have to travel so far West for the best selection of designy things in Los Angeles. Shelter Half had a little celebration happening and even a special or two for the night. Sexy men’s retailer General Quarters were open for business but didn’t really have anything going on aside from hanging out.
As we walked the West portion of La Brea, we realized no one was out. It was a fashion doldrum. It was 8:10PM and there did seem to be foot traffic…but no one was “out.” It was a little awkward.
Thankfully, the Eastside was where it was at. Union was absolutely abuzz with people. Since we drove past initially, arrived, and left, Union was the only place visibly bustling. There are many reasons why this could be but the only plausible ideas are that the Kogi Truck was there and Orley were launching their wears. There were lots of neat, fashionable people and–of course–the Orley trio were there in their knits and everyone was trying on their sweaters. If you missed didn’t swing by last night, stop by Union as they have some items in stock.
Further South, Blind Barber had an event with a sizable crowd and a barber cutting hair. American Rag was full of people and had a band, cocktails, a Comune something, and a place for people to draw on shoes (not sure what it was but people were taking markers to some high tops). American Rag had the only other event that rivaled Union perhaps because of their size and/or reach. The crowd here was a bit too cool just for the sake of being cool and we bounced after a guy with a Bull Terrier blocked foot traffic twenty too many times because people were trying to take photos of the dog.
By night’s end, we discovered just how rad the La Brea retail area is. It felt a bit like Soho combined with Seattles rough odds and ends paired with our editing skills. New (but not open) places like Sycamore Kitchen and Graffiti intrigued and are definite causes to return. We still aren’t entirely sure what #FNO is even though we attended the happening, though. (Stores are just open later? There are food trucks? You get some free booze? Sales? New York fashion culture attempts to supplant our own?) No matter, Los Angeles has a new strip and Fashion’s Night Out 2012 at District La Brea was its coming out ball.