Category Archives: Handbags

On The Fashion Pulse, American Rag



Getting Her Fill of Retail Therapy, 90210'a Shenae Grimes was Spotted Leaving the American Rag on La Brea


American Rag on La Brea is the epitome of a too-cool-for-school, one-stop-shop destination. The merchandise seems to be so cutting edge that it is hard to tell if the buyers have their fingers firmly on the pulse of Los Angeles, or if they are creating the pulse themselves. An entire rainy afternoon can be spent blissfully getting lost amongst the racks of sequined vintage, designer denim, and delightfully obscure high-end retail—we know from experience, as we stayed dry in this shopper’s haven when the rain came a-knocking this past week. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!

The scope and breadth of the store’s merchandise is simultaneously stimulating and intimidating. Upon entry you are greeted with blasts of color and funky art, displayed against warm wood, all situated within a cool urban loft expose. The u-shaped shoe display is the central focus of the main store, with the women and men’s retail flanking the display, and their vintage collection bringing up the rear. If that was not enough to make one’s heart skip-a-beat, to the right is their “World Famous Denim Bar,” although no Irish coffee was found, the denim selection was a sight to behold in and of itself.

Mark Werts, the owner and founder of American Rag, claims the buyers are what separate his stores from the masses, and the denim bar clearly showcases their talent. Ranging from classic 501 Levi’s to J-Brand’s newest invention, “jeggings” (they look a lot better than they sound), your desire for all things denim can be fulfilled here, and then some. We were thrilled to see that our favorite skinny jeans from EVER made an appearance amongst other up and coming contemporary brands such as CORPUS, Kill City, and PRPS, all perfectly mixed in with the big hitters, such as Helmut Lang, Diesel, and Citizens of Humanity.

The price tag on American Rag’s selection of vintage ranges dramatically from thirty-dollar funk-a-dellic flannels to two hundred dollar army coats, steeped in history. Although you wont find those vintage Chanel ballet flats you’ve been searching for, as there is little label vintage, you will find reasonably priced thermals, sweatshirts, t-shirts, and some awesome neon-plaid bell-bottoms, if those happen to light your fire. If the neon-plaid bell-bottoms intimidate you, and perhaps rightfully so, American Rag’s retail is paces away and offers you classic options, updated to today’s urban cool-vibe that simply exudes from the store. The men’s selection is a must, as it proves there should be so much more to a man’s wardrobe than just sneakers and jeans.

The menswear buyer, James Hammonds, sums up the success of store with, “You come in to accentuate your own look, not buy into ours.” It seems like American Rag simply wants to makes the masses look cool, the coolest part being, they don’t want to dictate your wardrobe, but just re-vamp your already existing look.

We surprisingly worked up a sweat scouring the racks, but didn’t even need to open our umbrella to find some lemonade. Café Midi is tucked away in the back of American Rag’s home décor store, Maison-Midi, which is easily accessible from the main retail section.  We happily obliged when we saw banana bread on the menu— as we all know, it is our quintessential comfort food that tastes so much better when the weather is damp and dreary. Alas, they keep their recipe under lock and key.


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Filed under Accessories, Boutiques, Celebrity Shopping, Clothing, Clothing: Men, Clothing: Women, Handbags, Interior Design, Jewelry, LA: Hollywood, LA: West Hollywood, Vintage

The Casual Approach

Jessica Alba looks quite comfy hanging out with a girlfriend in Santa Monica.  

Jessica's Relaxed Look

In Los Angeles, the closer to the beach, the more casual the style.  Jessica looks quite comfy in her ballet flats, skinny jeans, oversized bag and wrap sweater.  What do you think of this look?

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Filed under Celebrity Shopping, Clothing: Women, Fashion Tips, Handbags, LA: Westside, Seasonal: Winter, Shoes, Shoes: Women

Tonight: It’s a Seaside Holiday Party

Tonight from 5 pm ~ 9 pm, Tim Clarke Designs is hosting a holiday party!

2110 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90405

Food by our favorite oyster bar: BP Oysterette . . .

and a special shopping event at Tim Clarke

December 9 – 12th

Featured Designers: Tim Clarke, Art Luna, Seaside Luxe exclusives from Tahiti & India, Gregory Parkinson, Surf Monk, Hinu, Katro, The Woods, Irit Designs, Libbie Lane Totes, Sable & Zac, Sandy Simonian Jewerly, Kendall Conrad, L’Oeil du Vert, Deszo, Irving & Fine, Johnnie O, The Lady & the Sailor, Chan Luu, Jason Dow, Skamandros by Deborah Barnet and Collections from Zvezda

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Filed under Clothing, Events, Handbags, Jewelry, LA: Westside, Resort, Sales, Seasonal: Winter

Madison’s Summer Sale Is Underway!


What: Madison’s Spring/Summer Sale 30-50% OFF! New markdowns on clothing, shoes, and accessories. Includes popular brands such as Chloe and YSL shoes, Elizabeth and James, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Pucci, and much more!

When: June 1 – August 1

Where: MADISON Los Angeles – Online and in stores.

Madison 3rd Street
8745 West 3rd Street
Los Angeles, CA 90048

Madison Brentwood
11677 San Vicente Blvd
Brentwood, CA 90049

Madison Melrose
8115 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90046

Madison Malibu
3835 Cross Creek Road
Malibu, CA 90265

Madison Palisades
1017 Swarthmore Avenue
Pcific Palisades, CA 90272

Madison Westlake
100 Promenade Way, #D
Westlake Villiage, CA 91362

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Filed under Accessories, Boutiques, Celebrity Shopping, Clothing, Clothing: Women, Handbags, Jewelry, LA: Beverly Hills, LA: Brentwood, LA: Malibu, LA: Robertson Blvd, LA: West Hollywood, LA: Westside, Online Shopping, Sales, Seasonal: Summer, Shoes, Shoes: Women

The Brentwood Country Mart – from Country Clubbers to Hippie Mothers

The Brentwood Country Mart is definitely a place to see and be seen! This is a popular spot for locals and celebrities alike to stop for some shop and nosh. The atmosphere evokes a mid-western barn, but the stores strictly speak Los Angeles high style. The Mart has a food courtyard with surrounding stores that sell everything from women’s, children’s, and men’s clothes to books, candy, and home furnishings.

Brentwood Country Mart


The Brentwood Country Mart is one of the first of its kind to have a chic, preppy, yet casual, men’s boutique, called apartment number 9.

 For jewelry, there is Broken English and Pippa Small jewelry that both sell beautiful one-of-a-kind looks.

 For home and fragrance, we love Calypso Home for gorgeous, unique home furnishings and Marie Mason Apothecary where you can splurge on fragrances, bath, and more.

And probably the most exciting… for women’s clothing, we love Calypso, Post 26, and Jigsaw. Calypso boasts a mix of international accessories and supremely chic pieces from high end-fashion designers including the original designer, Calypso by Christiane Celle. Post26 provides a fun environment for eclectic clothing for every shopper from rockers to bohemians. London-based Jigsaw is a great store for anytime fashion—the weekend, the office, and the evening.

 The Brentwood Country Mart: 225 26th Street (corner of 26th and San Vicente), Santa Monica, CA 90402


Filed under Accessories, Boutiques, Celebrity Shopping, Clothing, Clothing: Men, Clothing: Women, Handbags, Interior Design, Jewelry, LA: Brentwood, Lingerie, Resort, Shoes, Shoes: Women

Live the Clever Lifestyle

Our lovely Czech, Radka Opalka, makes us girls feel happy to shop, shop, and shop! Approximately two years ago, Radka opened Clever: a boutique that caters to all women with a stylish, feminine flair. Radka describes her products as “practical and pretty,” with “clever” touches like whimsical patterns, up-to-date styles, and witty uses for home accessories. Clever aims to provide an intimate shopping environment enhanced with unique clothing and designers. But unlike many boutiques that hike up prices for garments of mediocre quality, Clever only sells garments of great quality at reasonable prices. It’s so nice to be able to walk into a boutique and feel like the prices match the fabric, styles, and cuts of the clothing!

Inside View

View From The Entrance

So what is in this wonderful treasure chest of a store? Clever carries a wide range of designers from Audrey Acosta (green) recycled silk one-of-a-kind pieces to Single Tease T-shirts that boast pick up lines for women on the front (e.g. “just ask me (out)”). Other popular Clever brands include Haven (long dresses in billowy prints), Pink Tool Belts (for those handy fashion-conscious women), Bungalow 360 (accessories à la beach), Gloveables (the best way to get your dishes done), Funky Urban (our favorite tee says “well-behaved women rarely make history”), Survival (comfortable, cotton essential dresses), 382 (loud, playful prints), and Angry Little Girls (recycled handbags with quirky, fun quips). And for you California visitors and worshipers, be sure to pick up a California-lovin’ tee like “I don’t Go East of the 405.” What’s more Clever has one of the best selections of gifts for all your friends!

Part of what makes Clever so special is that it is a lifestyle boutique. From the moment you walk in and see the Hungarian antique furniture, organic silks, and delicate jewelry (which Radka makes herself!), you feel as if you have walked into an interactive mood board. Radka has taken her idea of the quintessential girly shopping getaway and has turned it into a laid-back home-y experience. Radka even keeps her shop open late on Friday night for a complete “Retail Therapy” evening; she provides cocktails, friendly chit-chat, and, of course, shopping!

View From The Back

Treasure Uncovered

Mention this article and get 10% off your purchase!

Clever is located at: 2823 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90405 – 310.396.8108


Filed under Boutiques, Clothing, Clothing: Women, Handbags, Interior Design, Jewelry, LA: Westside, Lingerie, Resort, Sales, Seasonal: Spring, Seasonal: Summer, Shoes, Shoes: Women

The Lumber Yard

Paul Bunyan in Malibu…..?

Well not exactly, but there is a new shopping complex called the Lumber Yard. In the same location as the Country Mart, Malibu has built an eco-friendly building that boasts trendy boutiques, similar to the row of shops on Robertson Blvd. It includes such stores as Tory Burch, Intermix, Planet Blue, Alice and Olivia, and James Pearse. The Grand Opening a few short weeks ago was graced with the presence of Matthew McConaughey, Angie Harmon, Jeremy Piven and Terri Seymour … just to name a few.

Ariel Shot of The Malibu Lumber Yard

Aerial Shot of The Malibu Lumber Yard

A personal favorite of ours; Intermix which just came over to the west coast less than a year ago, is a store that also seems to continue to be a favorite amongst celebrities and locals. The buyer has an unparallel eye for striking and unique pieces. Few places can you buy a red Chloe handbag, Helmut Lang leather jacket, Splendid T-shirt, and a Diane Von Furstenburg dress.

Although Malibu is quite a jaunt if you live in the core of LA, it makes for a fabulous day trip. So instead of doing Runyon this Sunday, grab your girlfriends and head out for a breathtaking drive to the Lumber Yard to exercise your credit card! After, you can cure your buyer’s remorse with a sugar binge at CRUMBS, with a sinfully delicious cupcake! (You can always do Runyon tomorrow)

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Filed under Boutiques, Celebrity Shopping, Clothing, Clothing: Men, Clothing: Women, Handbags, Jewelry, LA: Malibu, Malls, Seasonal: Spring, Seasonal: Summer, Shoes, Shoes: Women, Swimwear