OLIVIER’S THEORY: Olivier Theyskens spent nearly a week in Los Angeles soaking up the sun and raising the profile of Theyskens’ Theory. “It’s raining cats and dogs in New York so I decided to stay the weekend,” said the designer, who presented a conversation with Arianne Phillips for Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s Costume Council on Wednesday, and hosted a cocktail party at Theory’s newly expanded and renovated Melrose Avenue store Thursday and a breakfast at the brand’s new Beverly Hills store on Friday.

“I really enjoyed the talk because LACMA is an amazing institution. They did a show in Paris called ‘Fashion in Fashion’ with the Decorative Arts Museum that focused on the mid-19th century to the early 20th century. I’ve admired historical clothes like Victorian gowns since I was a child, and it’s what motivated me to go into fashion,” he said.

This story first appeared in the May 13, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Of Phillips, who put him on the map when she asked him to design an Oscar gown for Madonna in 1998, he said, “She has been a friend from Day One. She’s the first person who asked to borrow clothes from me.”

Of his two years at the helm of Theyskens’ Theory, he said, “So much has evolved. I am looking to make the brand more visible, and to elevate the brand and the whole market, so we have a lot of lot more to do. I know we can bring more to it and transform it continually.”

The designer’s hand can also be seen in the revamped stores’ clean, loftlike design, for which he’s adding furniture and new custom mannequins made in Los Angeles. Theyskens also got to spend time with his pal Haider Ackermann, who was also in town last week for his own event with Saks Fifth Avenue. After their dinners at Soho House and Mr. Chow, respectively, the two reconvened at Bar Marmont and made plans to hang out in Venice Beach over the weekend.

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