Q&A: Designer George Allen Clinton
Esteemed WeHo tailor-turned-designer talks men's fashion trends and more.
June 05, 2013
|George Allen Clinton in his WeHo studio.|
George Allen Clinton’s eponymous George Clinton brand encompasses everything from ready-to-wear formal pieces, to bespoke suits crafted for the likes of Jason Statham and Joseph Gordon Levitt. We caught up with the talented tailor/stylist/designer in his West Hollywood studio to chat about current trends, his favorite star to work with, and the one suit every man should own.
What's your fashion philosophy?
GEORGE ALLEN CLINTON: It all begins with sourcing the finest materials from around the globe—whether that’s the wool of a Shetland pony from Scotland, the luxe long hair of an alpaca from New Mexico, or the finest cashmere from Tibet. When you pair those materials with precision fit and quality design, you attain an infallible piece of luxury clothing.
What trends are you seeing in suiting right now?
GAC: Besides the classic luxe slim tailored look, there’s an emergence of a worn-in and shrunken body contoured silhouette, leaning on the steampunk era of the early 1900s. The colors are more foggy and watered down. The other main direction in menswear is a nod to the ‘80s—an exaggeration of colors, shapes, and volume.
Why go custom versus buying off the rack?
GAC: As a bespoke customer, you have the opportunity to freely express yourself and your individuality. I will guide you in fabric selection, color studies, and in developing your own personal style. Basically, I facilitate you becoming your own designer.
Any favorite celebrities that you’ve dressed?
GAC: Hands down Zac Efron! I love his subtle way of pushing the fashion envelope. I’ve been struck by his knowledge of shapes, colors, and materials, in addition to his deep appreciation for true craftsmanship.
What would you change about the LA fashion scene?
GAC: As much as I love LA and its casual lifestyle, I don’t understand why men can’t reach for a soft, worn, tailored shirt to wear with their jeans instead of a ripped t-shirt or sweater. My goal is to inspire a new luxe-casual trend, one man at a time.
If a man is going to have one go-to suit, what should it be?
GAC: There is no such thing as just one suit! Every occasion requires a different mood. However, to close the gap, go for a great slim-fitting three-piece suit in a deep olive or charcoal gray with a subtle multicolored plaid, be it navy, black, or aubergine. With the right shirt, you'll be able to look polished and appropriate for any occasion.
With formalwear, what's the best way to stand out at an event?
GAC: Let the fabric speak for itself with a subtle sheen or an unusual shadow stripe. My favorite look for this season's formalwear harkens back to the first half of this century—be it the dandy of the ‘20s in his three-piece tuxedo or the always impeccably dressed Cary Grant of the ‘40s. The most important way to stand out in a formal occasion, however, is to always be aware of your posture and be a gentleman!
Tappan Collective Teams with LA Opera
The LA-based art platform introduces pieces inspired by the LA Opera's performance of Tosca.
June 04, 2013
This week (Wednesday, June 5 and Saturday, June 8) marks the LA Opera’s final performances of Giacomo Puccini’s tragic romance Tosca, the tale of the painter Cavaradossi and his lover, who hide a political fugitive from the Roman chief of police at great cost. Inspired by the opera’s strong relationship with art, the curators from LA-based online art platform Tappan Collective have commissioned a series of six pieces to reflect Tosca’s main leitmotifs—musical themes utilized by Puccini to identify recurring characters or emotions.
Dubbed “Hidden Harmonies,” the collection features works by six emerging artists—one for each leitmotif—including Amanda Charchian, Doug Galante, Stevie Howell, Dean Levin, Cesar Vega, and Julian Wellisz. Aiming to create a visual connection to the musical themes in the masterful opera, the works will be showcased online at tappancollective.com and within the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion for one night only on June 5. For interested collectors, the pieces will be available for purchase both online and in person.
Conducted by acclaimed tenor Placido Domingo, Tosca features Sondra Radvanovsky, Marco Berti, and Lado Ataneli in its starring roles. A cocktail reception will follow the June 5 performance (7:30 pm show; 10:30 pm cocktail hour), while a talk that deconstructs the opera’s main themes will precede the June 8 showing (6:30 pm talk; 7:30 pm show). For more information or to purchase tickets for either evening, visit laopera.com. 135 N. Grand Ave., Downtown LA, 213-972-7219
A*Pour Toi Gourmet Gift Boxes
LA-based Parisienne Julie Hasson's assortments of sweets are filled with French elegance.
June 04, 2013
A*Pour Toi gourmet gift packages are filled with French regional delicacies.
Parisian entrepreneur Julie Hasson brings a French style of personalized gifting to LA with A*Pour Toi, a line of designer gourmet gift boxes replete with luxurious delicacies from her home region. Drawing from hundreds of fresh, high-quality ingredients like French chocolates, truffles, infused oils, and sweet almond paste, her collections ($58-$380) are artfully arranged and assembled with the gift recipient in mind.
Pick a package suited for a man, woman, or client/coworker, or choose among the colorfully themed assortments like Amour (sweet and chocolate), Gratitude (coffee treats), or Gluten-Free Delights. To create a truly unique gift experience that nurtures a relationship “the French way,” A*Pour Toi offers a monthly gift subscription program, as well as the option to personalize your box with a special photo or note.
For Father’s Day, Hasson’s limited-edition Favorite Gourmet Food package ($68) contains an array of her most loved delicatessens, such as French shortbread, raspberry-filled biscuits, Mia Dolci chocolate and vanilla swirl cookies, almond paste from Provence, raspberry fudge, pork sausage, and paté with black pepper, all packaged in a plush cotton pouch within a crafted keepsake box.
A*Pour Toi luxury gift collections are based in LA, and both the boxes and individual signature delicacies ($10-$16) can be purchased online at apourtoi.com.
The Hollywood Roosevelt Celebrates Marilyn Monroe
Pay homage to the starlet with special dishes at the hotel's Public Kitchen & Bar this month.
June 04, 2013
Pay tribute to Marilyn Monroe with a trio of strawberry blonde cupcakes at Public Kitchen & Bar, as part of the hotel's celebration of the star.
Public Kitchen & Bar at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel will celebrate Marilyn Monroe’s would-be 87th birthday with a special Marilyn, Always Remembered menu, available a la carte through the end of June. Crafted by executive chef Tim Goodell, the offerings include a cocktail, dessert, and small plate.
Toast the late legend with the Marilyn Suite, a blend of Three Olives’ Marilyn Monroe strawberry vodka with passion fruit puree, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Complement your cocktail with the specialty strawberry blonde cupcakes, which feature passion fruit curd and white chocolate icing and are decorated to evoke the late legend’s famous white ruffled halter dress. For something savory, try the Neapolitan meatballs with tomato sugo, pine nuts, and parmesan cheese, a dish Monroe learned to cook while married to Joe DiMaggio.
Monroe spent nearly two years living in the Hollywood Roosevelt while her career was getting started, so it’s no surprise that the hotel has dedicated a luxury suite to her. To really celebrate the blonde bombshell’s life, book a stay in the suite and take advantage of the hotel’s special HRH Marilyn Monroe Package, which includes her films, Champagne and truffles, reserved poolside lounge chairs, complimentary cocktails, and more. For additional information about the package, contact hotel reservations at 800-950-7667. 7000 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 323-769-8888
AllSaints Pops Up in Malibu
The British brand will spend a year in a prime Cross Creek Road shopping location.
June 03, 2013
AllSaints' Malibu pop-up features an industrial-chic design, with vintage sewing carts and an exposed ceiling playing off the line’s muted color palette.
British fashion house AllSaints opened the doors to a year-long pop-up shop in Malibu mid-May. The nearly 2,000-square-foot-space currently showcases summer-focused ready-to-wear and accessories for both men and women.
This season's standouts include the viper pattern pieces for women—a digital print in an earthy yet edgy mix of neutral colors, texturized with hand-embellished sequins and glass pipes. For men, expect lots of summery stripes.
The décor comes in the same muted color palette as the summer line. Industrial steel shelving structures and hanging racks showcase the clothing and accessories; polished concrete floors, clean white walls, and exposed beams and vents add to the underground feel. Meanwhile, subtle vintage touches such as antique sewing machines, hanging looms, and single-rail carts give the space just a bit of character. A lone digital projector will continuously stream exclusive branded content within the store. 3890 Cross Creek Rd., Malibu, 310-494-9310
'The Presence of the Past' at LACMA
LACMA considers its past and future in a new exhibit highlighting architect Peter Zumthor.
June 03, 2013
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, c. 1965; William L. Pereira and Associates, architects.
For the first time in its history, LACMA will present an exhibit about the museum’s own design, focusing on both the past development and future plans for the museum’s buildings. “The Presence of the Past: Peter Zumthor Reconsiders LACMA,” is divided into three parts—the first explores the museum in relation to the surrounding Hancock Park neighborhood. This portion looks at complicated and limiting factors that influenced the architecture and aesthetics of LACMA’s original design. Guests will get a glimpse of unrealized master plans for the museum by Renzo Piano and Rem Koolhaas, as well as fresh insights by William Pereira and Bruce Goff.
The exhibit’s main attraction, however, is an exploration of Zumthor’s vision for the redesign of LACMA’s east campus. Large-scale models depicting the Swiss architect’s upgrades will be on view; the plan gives a few modern upgrades to the structure, but still keeps its function and historical context intact.
Zumthor’s lofty career is also explored through works like Therme Vals in Switzerland, Kunsthaus Bregenz in Austria, and the Kolumba Art Museum of the Cologne Archdiocese in Germany—projects that earned him the 2009 Pritzker Prize and the 2013 Royal Institute of British Architects Gold Medal. These supporting elements help to convey Zumthor’s overall design aesthetic, and his commitment to integrating the history and spirit of the LACMA site into his redesign.
“The Presence of the Past” will run from June 9-September 15 in the Resnick Pavilion, and is part of the Getty’s “Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in LA” initiative. Entry is included with museum admission. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid City, 323-857-6000
Photography copyright 2013 Museum Associates/LACMA, photographic archives
What We're Reading
The best softshell crab in town, Orange County getaways, and favorite Cannes films.
May 31, 2013
Uma Thurman and Arpad Busson pose at the Cannes Film Festival; the event ended this week.
Check out this interview with Misa Hamamoto for an inside glimpse into the intricate process of jewelry design. The LA local crafts her unique pieces completely by hand from her downtown studio. [Racked LA]
Meanwhile, it’s softshell crab season, and for anyone with a craving, LA Weekly has a list of high-end dining destinations like WP24, Alma, and Son of a Gun that carry the crustacean. [LA Weekly]
It’s also prime time for outdoor activities, and the summer concert series at the L.A. County Arboretum hosted by the Pasadena Pops Orchestra kicks off this weekend. This opening performance marks the first time conductor Michael Feinstein will lead the charge after the passing of Marvin Hamlisch last year. [LA Times]
For anyone planning a summer weekend escape, The Hollywood Reporter has a list of luxe incentives to visit nearby Orange County—think: spa treatments at The Resort at Pelican Hill and a jet pack experience at the St. Regis Monarch Beach. [The Hollywood Reporter]
Know what to look out for from the Cannes Film Festival with Variety’s in-depth coverage. Expect insight into the event as a whole, and individual film reviews from esteemed critics. [Variety]
Photography by LOIC VENANCE/AFP/Getty Images
Brunch Plans: Mr. C Yacht Club
The hotel's poolside nautical-themed brunch event returns for the second year.
May 31, 2013
Indulge in gourmet bites and refreshing poolside cocktails at Mr. C’s Sunday brunch series.
Mr. C Beverly Hills launches the second season of the Mr. C Yacht Club this weekend—an afternoon poolside brunch soiree taking place every Sunday from 12-5 pm, June 2-September 8. Exuding European-style service and nautical-inspired glamour, the Yacht Club Vodka-sponsored event brings together Los Angeles tastemakers over gourmet drinks and dishes from the Mr. C culinary team.
Brunch-goers can cozy up on a chaise or reserve a private cabana (for inquiries, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org), while enjoying tunes from DJ Bobby French and one of Mr. C’s brunch refreshments. Drink options include the classic Cipriani white peach nectar bellini, or the hotel’s signature Mr. C mix of mandarin juice, lemon, prosecco, and Yacht Club Vodka. For brunch fare, expect everything from the traditional eggs benedict with smoked salmon, to a light baby artichoke and avocado salad appetizer, to the decadent Mr. C pizza with burrata cheese, prosciutto crudo di Parma, and rucola.
Post-brunch, guests can explore an exclusive Shay Todd pop-up boutique, which will be on location all summer long. The latest collection from the LA-based designer encompasses luxurious swimsuits, resortwear, coverups, and loungewear that draw inspiration from famous travel destinations. Hotel guests are guaranteed access to the Yacht Club, so consider booking a weekend staycation by calling for reservations at 877-334-5623. 1224 Beverwil Dr., Beverly Hills, 310-277-2800
Weekend Recommender: May 30-June 2
The soundtracks from Robert Zemeckis' films take the stage, a shellfish dinner at Catch....
May 30, 2013
Chef Sven Mede’s clams and chorizo, which will be offered at the inaugural Suds and Shellfish dinner at Catch Restaurant.
For the Record: Zemeckis at Rockwell: Table & Stage
Thursday, May 30, 8:30 pm
Catch the final preview of For the Record: Zemeckis before it officially opens May 31 (the opening performance is sold out). Rockwell’s dazzling 360-degree style dinner theater brings together stars of the stage and screen to act out famed scenes from some of director Robert Zemeckis’ best works, such as Back to the Future, Forrest Gump, Cast Away, and more. Guests can also take advantage of full dinner and cocktails menus. Tickets are $40 for reserved seating and can be purchased at rockwell-la.com or by calling 323-661-6163 ext. 20. 1714 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz, 323-669-1550
Jamie Wolf Trunk Show at Neiman Marcus
Friday, May 31-Saturday, June 1; 10 am-4 pm
Jamie Wolf’s luxurious diamond and jeweled earrings, necklaces, and rings are available at Neiman Marcus this weekend. Stars like Anne Hathaway, Natalie Portman, and Julia Roberts are fans of the brand. 9700 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, 310-550-5900 x4420
Lady at the O.K. Corral Reading at the Autry Museum
Saturday, June 1, 2 pm
To hear a sassy true story set in the Old West, head to the Autry museum, where author Ann Kirschner will read from her biographical book on Josephine Marcus Earp, the common-law wife of legendary lawman Wyatt Earp. The story, which weaves in themes of the Wild West, the American frontier, and the beginnings of Hollywood, is a fast-paced adventure that examines the woman behind a famous figure. A book signing follows the reading. 4700 Western Heritage Way, Hollywood, 323-667-2000
Suds & Shellfish Dinner at Catch
Sunday, June 2, 4-8 pm
Chef Sven Mede invites diners into the oceanfront Catch restaurant for a one-night-only shellfish feast paired with craft brews. The afternoon will include dishes like grilled Santa Barbara spot prawns with romesco, Maryland soft shell crab rolls, and Louisiana peel and eat shrimp, among other fresh offerings—all primed to eat with your hands. Tickets are $45 ($15 additional for beer pairings) and must be purchased in advance by calling the restaurant at 310-581-7714. 1910 Ocean Way, Santa Monica
Photography by By the Blue Sea
Friday Flights at the Getty Museum
The museum explores local music with a new Friday evening series.
May 30, 2013
The Getty Center’s summer programming includes a new Friday Flights series.
As part of its Friday Flights series, the Getty Center will host a multi-faceted event exploring the musical landscape of Los Angeles, Sonic Overdrive, this Friday, May 31 (7 pm). Encompassing artists from all genres of music, the evening will showcase the unique amalgam of sounds the city has generated—from the classic tunes of acclaimed ‘60s rocker Chris Hillman of The Byrds, to the soothing melodies of gospel icon Merry Clayton. The event will also feature tunes from punk-rocker Exene Cervenka, hip-hop artist Busdriver, Latin band La Santa Cecilia, and indie group Silversun Pickups, as well as a performance by Silverlake Conservatory of Music students. Tickets are $20 and available at getty.edu or by calling 310-440-7300.
The Getty’s Friday Flights are after-hours evenings of music, screenings, and more. After Sonic Overdrive, Angelenos can enjoy a 1940s-themed celebration that will include swing dance lessons, retro music, classic cocktails, and a screening of the noir film Kiss Me Deadly, among other programming (June 28). Next up is an ‘80s evening, which will feature new wave tunes by DJ Paul V, a showing of Blade Runner, and a Smile Lounge photo booth (July 19). All three events coincide with the exhibition “Overdrive: L.A. Constructs the Future, 1940–1990,” and provide a unique backdrop to consider the art and architecture of the city. 1200 Getty Center Dr., Brentwood, 310-440-7300
Photography by the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
Fashion shoot: December 2013 issue of Los Angeles Confidential magazine.