KINGS OF CHINATOWN
Sushi may be Japanese fare, but that didn’t stop designers Stefan Loy and Frank Ford from serving it at their Loy & Ford boutique on Chung King Road in Chinatown. So rice-rolled raw fish and warm sake nourished the endless parade of guests who clamored to the March 2 reopening of the boutique, which closed to the public last fall only a year after they first hung their first shingle because, as Ford plainly offered in his heavy German accent, “we ran out of clothes.”
Of course, they weren’t literally wiped out. Clothes were coming into the Chinatown hip haunt from contractors and immediately shipping out to Barneys New York and elsewhere. Just as fast, they turned around custom orders of their slashed and unfinished silk jersey and lace togs for Britney Spears, Cher and Alanis Morissette.
While the replenished racks and shelves got plenty of attention, some of the best looks of the night appeared on the guests. The choppy hairdos alone reminded a few vets of Chinatown’s last revival of the punk days at nearby Madame Wong’s.
It was just another triumphant bash at Freddie Rojas’ space on Melrose Avenue, as an eclectic-looking cast of characters — stylists, streetwear designers, deejays and club kids — gathered to be fabulous. Rojas in October joined Private Clothing (formerly Private Circle) as head designer for women’s and men’s wear. As part of the deal, Private assumed ownership of the Rojas store. The longtime “X” that had marked the spot at Rojas’ signature store was replaced with the word “Private,” reflecting a new phase for the designer.
But it was clear at the party on Feb. 28 that Rojas, who launched his first Private collection during New York fashion week in February, still owned it in other ways.
His tough, sexy, clubby aesthetic is evident in the provocative dressing rooms and the wet-looking, polyurethane-coated concrete floors. “We wanted the space to be very sensual, with a voyeuristic feel to it, but also have some raw elements of nature,” said Danny Cook, Private’s president and co-founder.
Of course, the environment is also very much an extension of Cook’s vision, along with that of art director Nathan Jobe. They incorporated movable fixtures, stained wood displays and suspended honeycomb Plexiglas from the ceiling. The honeycomb also stretches the length of the back selling floor, serving as a revealing wall to the dressing room. Only a silhouette is seen, but the effect titillates.
During the party, partygoers became peep-show voyeurs, as fellow guests tried on Private’s latest offerings.
Private, which garnered about $1.5 million in sales in 2001, is a division of the Barcelona-based adult entertainment conglomerate Mil Cap Media Group.
Blues By The Beach
Members of the Garment Contractor’s Association gathered Feb. 16 at the Harbour House restaurant in Marina Del Rey for dinner, dancing and an impromptu “Blues Brothers” session. “They got me up there after a glass of wine,” joked GCA executive director Joe Rodriguez. Six college scholarships, starting at $2,000, were given out to children and grandchildren of the region’s contractors.
Pictured: CGA president Jimmy Macias and CGA’s Rodriguez as the Blues Brothers. Behind them, from left to right: Brenda Daitch, GCA director from Contract Associates, and Hon. Lucille Roybal-Allard, 33rd Congressional District.