Luxury specialty stores are setting a new standard in the city that pioneered laid-back style. Dressed-up, be that with printed silk-cashmere T-shirts or beaver-fur hats by Pharrrell's go-to milliner, now equals cool.
Designer Greg Chait is putting a California spin on cashmere, making it playful, casual, and light. After winning the 2012 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund, Chait set up his own factory and an atelier in a copper-roofed renovated house in West Hollywood, imagined by in-demand local design firm Commune. Young starlets (Zoe Saldana, Emma Stone) flock to the minimalist, bungalow-style space—which features a succulents garden and views of the Pacific Design Center—for the label’s ultrasoft, hand-spun updates of crew sweaters, striped Baja beach pullovers, and printed silk-cashmere T-shirts. The bespectacled Chait also sells his own collections of eyewear, jewelry, and kids’ clothing, which appear alongside books, records, and objets d’art handpicked by the designer. 607 Huntley Dr., West Hollywood.
Topiary flamingos flank the entrance to the fine jeweler’s new flagship, which is presided over by Teddy, her labradoodle, and patronized by Hollywood stars like Jennifer Lawrence. “Jewelry stores are usually so stuffy. I wanted mine to feel more like a home,” says Neuwirth, whose work includes brushed rose-gold cuffs and elaborate necklaces in opal and green chrysoprase. Pamela Shamshiri of Commune reimagined the interior as a glamorous jewel box of marble, white lacquer, and brass, complete with a library and working kitchen for entertaining clients. Neuwirth has created 250 one-of-a-kind designs for the store—some cleverly displayed in a jungle diorama of leather, suede, and velvet birds and butterflies. 8458 Melrose Place, West Hollywood.
The go-to milliner for Pharrell and Madonna has relocated to a larger space in Venice—the better to showcase his high- crowned, wide-brimmed designs. On display are beaver-fur felt pieces finished with applications of dirt, paint, even flames. You’ll have to wait up to three months for a tailored straw fedora or a rugged cowboy hat; prices start at $750. 853 Lincoln Blvd., Venice.
In the Art Deco building where Howard Hughes once worked as a movie producer, former retail fashion director Paola Russo has set up an ultra-hip concept store that caters to the entertainment elite. She has a knack for putting together one-off collaborations, like a 12-piece collection of $55,000 alligator backpacks by Damien Hirst for the Row. Women’s wear ranges from classic Valentino dresses to provocative Fleur du Mal lingerie and bangles by Sidney Garber. Men will find an equally fashionable selection, including spiked sneakers by Christian Louboutin. 7000 Romaine St., Los Angeles.L’Eclaireur
Opening soon:The high-fashion retailer that first introduced Paris to brands like Prada and Maison Martin Margiela is finally landing stateside in May. European luxury houses and Asian futurists will be housed next to Vincenzo De Cotiis furniture and Piero Fornasetti home décor. In line with the store’s reputation for exclusivity, nearly half of the merchandise will likely remain hidden in the back. Corner of North Robertson Blvd. and Dorrington Ave., West Hollywood.