The August issue of Harper's Bazaar has a feature on Elizabeth Wiatt and Jamie Tisch and their "concept store," Fashionology L.A. Elizabeth, 41, is the wife of Jim Wiatt, CEO of the William Morris Agency. She's also on the board of the Natural Resources Defense Council. She is described as a "brainy beauty," maybe because she is brunette. Jamie, 39, the "blonde bombshell," was married to film producer/NY Giants chairman Steve Tisch, and also raises money for the Women's Cancer Research Fund. There are so many vomit-inducing moments in the story about their store, described as "a real-life version of Cher Horowitz's computerized closet in Clueless meets a Build-a-Bear Workshop," that it seemed necessary to compile them all. (Not included: When the writer tries the store and designs a hoodie that ends up costing $95.) You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll lose your lunch, after the jump.
The 1,900-square-foot space is painted with mantras that encourage shoppers to "make it happen" and "mix it up - no rules apply." On inspiration boards, Tiger Beat idols past (Elvis, Johnny Depp) and present (Zac Efron, Orlando Bloom, the aforementioned Jonas Brothers) are paired with encouraging quotes from John Cage, Coco Chanel, and Sister Corita, the now-deceased former nun who designed a love postage stamp in 1985. "We're really about empowerment," says Wiatt.
Just a reminder: This store is for girls ages 8 to 12. Elvis is so empowering for them, you guys!
An animated rainbow-striped heart avatar asks a customer,"What's your fashion mood?" Her choices are Pop, Malibu, Peace, Rock, and Juku (short for Harajuku). Fleece hoodies, T-shirts, and dresses can be customized with adorably quirky illustrations including a Chihuahua, a ‘70s dream horse, and a "strawbunny," which is a rabbit in strawberry garb. "I'm 60 percent Peace with 10 percent Juku and 5 percent Rock. The rest is Malibu. I love surfing," says Wiatt.
You forgot 50% ridiculous, 50% annoying!
Wiatt and Tisch met through their husbands 15 years ago and are now so close, they even carry the same canvas Louis Vuitton Rayures tote.
Aren't rich people funny?
They experimented with toy sewing machines but found the concept nearly impossible to execute. "It would be pretty hard to teach that age - even women our age - how to sew," says Tisch.
Women — and children — all over the world sew. In fact, children may be sewing the clothes in your store: Did you check the labor practices of your vendors?
"We're dealing with the aspirations and the birthday parties of 10-year-old girls," says Wiatt. "We want Fashionology L.A. to be the most fantastic memory that they're going to have."
What a great memory. Peaking early while shopping. Not learning to ride a bike or getting an A in biology or winning the Nobel Peace Prize or reading to the blind. Shopping as the greatest memory. That's what you want for the next generation? Humanity is doomed. Well-dressed, but doomed!
Elizabeth Wiatt & Jamie Tisch: Ladies Who Launch [Harper's Bazaar]