Rodriguez garners her local inspiration in various ways, from surf subcultures to L.A. fashion brethren. I love James Galanos and Rudi Gernreich, who were designing here in the 50s, she says. Rodriguezs longtime boyfriend, skate legend Tony Alva, is also constantly turning her on to new neighborhoods and underground scenes. But its her ultracool vintage boutiqueakin to a high school smokers lounge sans the ciggiesthat ups the citys collective fashion IQ. Actresses, stylists and artists drop in to chat passionately about style setters like Ossie Clark or Federico Fellini in a salon-like atmosphere. It serves as her creative laboratory. You have these tiny girls running around, and I think, How small can I actually make this skirt? she says with a laugh. And they love it and wear it.
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