The exciting collections at Fusion Federation can transform an everyday look into something special. Colorful floral dresses encourage creativity and fun; blouses and skirts with sleek lines or feminine frills fill out wardrobes for work, parties, and casual dates with friends. Patrons can accessorize their outfits with chic belts that add definition and bags that add elegance or bohemian flair. Shoes are available for perusal as well, including stilettos and pumps designed for formal events and cork wedges suitable for trendy water-skiing competitions.
The brand American Apparel, which recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary, conjures up images of stylish and well-fitting fashion basics. It also likely brings to mind sassy advertisements featuring long-haired beauties in natural makeup posing in skin-bearing bodysuits and loungewear.
But what many don't know about the brand—despite its name and the slice of apple pie that comes with every purchase—is that all of its clothes are made in America. Everything from sewing and cutting to accounting and marketing happens in one building in downtown Los Angeles, and the rest occurs within a 30-mile radius. Not only that, every slim-fitting pair of pants, spandex bodysuit, and v-neck T-shirt is made in a sweatshop-free environment.
Plus, keeping everything in house means the company eliminates unnecessary and wasteful factors, such as shipping fuel and packing materials, as well as provides jobs to Angelenos, instead of outsourcing them.
EpicWear doesn’t have the outrageously expensive marketing budget of a multinational fashion firm, so the plucky U.S.-based company relies on the quality of their work to speak for itself. Their team of optical engineers kick off the process, building two types of high-tech lenses: a polycarbonate blend that delivers distortion-free depth perception, or a polarized lens with an 8-layer hard finish for extra scratch protection. Both deflect glare and block 100% of UV rays without distorting images on the other side of the sunglass. Next, designers and craftsfolk take over, drawing up a slew of rugged, sleek, or classic frames. So far, their efforts have resulted in everything from a futuristic wraparound Elipse—ideal keeping eyes dust free during biking or beach sports—to a classic Aviator frame that mimics the look of fighter pilots or the lawyers in the Lindbergh trial.
Jewelry At The Square sells a fusion of southwestern, modern, and Native American jewelry designs. Owner Moe Shawar runs the newly opened store, which specializes in gemstone-studded earrings, bracelets, and necklaces to suit nearly any budget. Examples of the store's wares are a long-strand onyx necklace and an opalite ring. The shop sets baubles in gold or sterling silver, or in a mixture of both—like the medal that was custom-made for the first Siamese twins to come in first and second in the long jump.
Today's Groupon drapes you in silver and gold and douses you in gems and jewels from Sonny's Rocks, the enchanted enclave of dazzling diamonds, bridal jewelry, and fashion and estate pieces. For $25, you get $75 toward timeless and feminine sparkling jewels and treasures, perfect for decorating your Valentine like a queen or a special-edition Barbie doll that looks like Sharon Stone.
Kismet bestows bodies with designer apparel and jewelry designed by local artists, and bedecks dwellings with affordable décor. The chic boutique stocks an expansive and ever-changing lineup of brands, including cardigans, wraps, and other tuna melts by Wooden Ships ($32–$75) and handbags by Shiraleah ($36–$78). Necklines shimmer in jewelry by local artist Christy Lea Payne, such as the bronze dog tag ($46), while earlobes glimmer with sterling-silver peacock earrings by Dream Mullick ($55). Infuse homes with French flavor with Quality Time's C'est La Vie wall ornament ($42), proudly announcing to visitors a casual indifference to their muddy feet.