Finally….the black leather harness dress arrived (but still waiting for the shoes…Nick?), and I had my appointment at the secret store — Akai Ito in downtown’s Art District. By far the coolest part of downtown. For me to say this is BIG…but it’s on par with some of my favorite cool and stylish arrondissements in Paris and neighborhoods in NYC. The store – appointment only right now – is the brainchild of Jeremy Friend and Douglas VanLaningham. I met Jeremy when he was managing the Skingraft store (of course!). Visiting Akai Ito was a treat on so many levels. Nothing like seeing dreams come true (the boys have realized their vision and aspirations), and it’s also a smart addition to one of the strongest statements downtown – the very tight brand vision of the Arts Districts. Urban cool. So if urban, edgy is your style then this is your store. More men’s than women’s lines right now but that’s evolving. And women are snapping up the small sizes in men’s. I was too late and a bit weepy over a pair of cropped, dropped crotch pants. Some lucky girl was already running around LA, rocking them with some ridiculously high-heeled Rick Owens open-toed boots, a wife beater and leather jacket. Oh, wait.…that sounds like me! That’s how I would have worn those pants. I can dream, can’t I? I’ve also got the inside scoop on a women’s shoe line coming mid-June that will make you run to Akai Ito. They
have the US exclusive. Here I go again…fashion impatience welling up. Jeremy…please hold size 7 for me in every style!! There’s also a men’s shoe line debuting soon. Here’s a sneak peek of the women’s shoe line and some pix from my day with Jeremy, Douglas and their charming shop dogs. Jeremy and Douglas are both lovely people who are welcoming and genuine. The dogs are pretty nice too.
Akai Ito – contact info
941 East 2nd Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
www.akaiitoboutique.com (new website coming soon)
Akai Ito – meaning
The Japanese word “ito” has dual meanings: it means a string or a thread, but it also means a direction, an intention or an aim.
The Japanese also believe in the “red string of fate” – unmei no akai ito – which, according to lore, connects people who are destined to meet. This shared meaning and connection, between two people – even if they have yet to meet – is essentially about “connecting the dots.”
Sneak Peak- Women’s shoe line coming in mid June