Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The EDISON Downtown

If your career is centered in the downtown Los Angeles area then you must treat yourself to a Happy Hour or two at the Edison. The Edison features $.35 cocktails and anything else you desire. (50 different gins, 20 different scotches, 15 types of Absinthes, wine, beer, you name it.) The decor is decidedly 1920's and added to this ambiance is a burlesque show reminiscent of pre-World War I European burlesque. Free grilled cheese and a small cup of tomato soup is offered on Friday nights. You gotta love the bar that looks after you.

Located at 108 W. 2nd St. #101, Los Angeles, CA 90012. 213-613-0000

Friday, October 9, 2009


I recently took a trip to San Francisco with a friend and was treated to dinner at this awesome hideaway restaurant called "Biscuits and Blues." If you love live music, especially blues, and good southern cuisine then you will very much enjoy this venue. Although we initially passed the restaurant, there is an awning over the sidewalk boasting its name. When you walk inside you are met by a hostess in the foyer who checks you in. You then walk down a flight of stairs, turn to your left and are swept into a very cool basement bar/restaurant equipped with a stage and about 20 small round tables with chairs. Booths circle the perimeter of the bar. The artist we saw was Earl Thomas and his band. It was phenomenal. The band was well costumed in suits and pompadours and then there's Earl. He reminded me of a banker who moonlights as a blues singer. Very clean cut but can wail his tail off. Earl keeps the audience entertained with sing-a-longs and cruising through the crowd while belting out his soulful melodies including those from Etta James. After the show I learned that Earl Thomas has an extensive fan base and is a worldwide blues singer. As for the food my friend and I both ordered the fried chicken which wasn't as tasty as my mother's but better than the average restaurant and perhaps some homecooking. All in all Biscuits and Blues offers a good time and I will definitely be back the next time I'm visiting the Bay area.

401 Mason St
San Francisco, CA 94102-1705
(415) 292-2583

Santee Alley in Downtown L.A.

There was a time period from a couple years ago on back when I wouldn't dare step foot in Santee Alley. I was a snob. I didn't want anything to do with what I considered cheap threads in a seedy part of town. (Little did I know I would practically live in this same area) It's crowded, smells like bacon wrapped hotdogs, and full of hagglers trying to negotiate a deal. BUT, in these hard economic times, I must pay ode to this downtown treasure. First of all, I have enough fashion industry experience to realize that the clothing sold downtown is almost the same, if not the exact same garment that I can buy at a boutique, except I'd be paying much more at the boutique. They have women's and men's fashions, cute shoes, baby clothes, lingerie, etc. Many boutique buyers purchase the same clothing from the same wholesale shops lining Wall St. and in the San Pedro Mart that the Santee vendors buy from. Also, I like bacon wrapped hotdogs! Even if I can't indulge in one I savor the fragrance of cooking onions and pork wrapped in pork. MmmmmMmmmm. And the haggling with the salespeople? That's only increased my negotiating tactics. Anyone who has never been to Santee Alley needs to experience this shopping frenzy and those who snub it need to reconsider it's good points. It's stylish, it's cheap, it's always current. If you're a label whore then simply take the label off and go without one. Who even cares about that anymore. If you look good in it then that's all that matters.

Did Diane Von Furstenburg steal Project Runway Designer's Dress?!?!?

This year I was fortunate enough to attend the 2009 Emmy's as an on air reporter covering the event. As I stood on my designated X in the press pin, fanning myself to keep from delirium in the blistering heat, I saw in the distance the image of Project Runway designer Korto Momolu.
"OMG, that's 'Kato'" I said to my cameraman. We called her over to get a few words with her on tape. I have to admit I was most excited about meeting her as opposed to some of the other celebrities walking the red carpet (my background is fashion). She is one of my favorite designers, Project Runway contestant or otherwise. The girl has serious skills and her dresses are beautiful. Speaking of dresses, earlier in the year I visited Nordstrom and saw the black and white geometric print dress with yellow trim she made for the Diane Von Furstenburg challenge on Project Runway. I loved that dress! Korto lost that challenge but I was thrilled to see it in Nordy's. The dress was in Diane Von Furstenburg's area. Interesting. I walked over and looked at the label inside the dress. It said Diane Von Furstenburg. Hmmm.....okay, cool. Diane bought the design from Korto despite her losing the challenge. Perhaps Diane recognized Korto's talent and offered her a position to freelanced for Diane's line.
Korto walked over to us and after exchanging greetings I inquired about the dress, however, her response is not what I anticipated. "I'm glad someone else saw that," Korto said. Apparently Korto was not made aware that Diane was going to produce her dress and sell it. Korto also mentioned seeing her dress in a magazine. Gasp! Even though I work in the industry and know that we can be a shady lot of characters, I did not expect this behavior from Diane. Would it have really made an impact on the books if Korto had been paid for her dress design or given credit? Korto refrained from speaking ill of the designer but after a stunt like that I definitely feel as if Korto should have won the Project Runway Allstar challenge, yet she came in second. And who was judging Korto and the other contestants? Diane Von Furstenburg. Korto had made the dresses of a couple of celebrities attending the Emmys. She is also promoting her handbag and accessory line. Her dress line will be launched during the upcoming Mercedez Benz fashion shows.