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La Brea

Seven new spots to shop in Hollywood's up-and-coming retail district

by Julie Wolfson in Culture on 30 August 2011

From Japanese selvage denim to modern bohemian tunics, La Brea is quickly becoming one of the most creative shopping destinations in Los Angeles. The neighborhood redevelopment project has helped inspire several new stores to open their doors on the extra-large boulevard, revitalizing the blocks between Beverly Boulevard and 2nd Street. Now with Feal Mor, Don Ville shoes, Black Scale, General Quarters and the brand new Post 42, this retail capital of well-put-together stores is filled with independent designs, vintage finds and handmade accessories.

In an area where And Still, Undefeated, Stussy and Union sit side by side near the wacky giant Hollywood signs, and the kitschy pop culture collections of Nick Metropolis are on the same street as American Rag and phenomenal art exhibits at Merry Karnowsky Gallery, we found seven new favorites.

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Self Edge

Self Edge is the go-to outfitter for the best selvage denim including Real Japan Blues, Iron Heart and Strike Gold, as well as plaid shirts and jackets. Current stock at the Los Angeles store includes hand dyed Kawatako belts, wallets and bags.

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Next up they are launching a line called Stevenson Overall Company made in Japan. It's an updated classic American style so, according to owner Kiya Babzani, “You don't look like a railroad worker.”

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Don Ville Shoes

With a brand-new retail space connected to a full-service shoe workshop, the cobblers at Don Ville craft bespoke, made-to-measure and ready-to-wear footwear onsite.

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Peek into the workroom to see projects in various states of development and lust after the perfect leather for bespoke loafers; drool-worthy examples include turquoise patent oxfords and pearl grey ankle boots.

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Black Scale

Founded by Mega and Alfred de Tagle, urban art collective Black Scale fills their minimalist space with graphic black-and-white t-shirts, apparel and accessories with pops of red, along with skulls, pyramids and crucifixes.

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Added into the mix, look for grey jackets, vests with multiple layers of fabric and long charcoal sweaters with metal buttons, sleek black high-tops and collaborative projects.

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Feal Mor

As a collector of military uniforms, owner JP Plunier designs striped military-inspired sweaters and stocks his store with wetsuits from Amsterdam, as well as short-sleeved button-down oxfords made from super-fine Japanese cotton.

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Accessories new and vintage line the shop, which also houses surfboards, bicycles, turntables and other treasures. Based on the French '56 Jump Jacket, look for the noir black or cognac tan Feal Mor Battle Jacket in the La Brea store and online.

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What Goes Around Comes Around

A wonder emporium of classic glamour and style, What Goes Around Comes Around peddles vintage Chanel, Levi's LVC, The West is Dead, custom Converse high-tops, vintage Louis Vuitton luggage and vintage eyewear. Their own WGACA Collection of '60s-inspired pieces feature retro prints, embroidered details and fur outerwear.

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Stylist Paige Yingst has the back room set up with special merchandise and is ready to help customers find the perfect look for any special occasion.

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General Quarters

General Quarters owner Blair Lucio fills his men's lifestyle store with Americana heritage styles that focus on casual California-inspired designs. Inside you'll find plaid shirts, soft tees and relaxed denim sitting beside pocket knives, motorcycles, and vintage American bandanas.

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Lucio's favorite lines include Gant Rugger, Life After Denim, Kelty Pack, Pail Car Denim, Groceries and CXXVi. New finds include bracelets made from World War II-era camo parachute para-cord with a old good luck fishing lure recast in bronze.

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Post 42

Matt Winter erected two Quonset huts in a parking lot at the corner of 1st and La Brea and quietly opened up shop at Post 42. Officially opening in mid-September, reclaimed furniture and objects, along with new and vintage apparel and accessories, will sell from inside the World War II structures.

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See more images from the shops in the gallery below.

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