Hip'tique event + Laurel Berman for Black Halo

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Last week I was invited to attend and cover an event at a gorgeous little shop in Santa Monica called Hip'tique. The selection of  to-die-for designer dresses is off the charts, and one line in particular had my pulse racing...

(Enough to make me slip out of my favorite vintage sequined dress in a heartbeat!)
Tanya Dempsey in a Secondhand Star dress, Laurel Berman in Black Halo

Enter: Black Halo. Do you guys know about Black Halo? SIMPLY. STUNNING. DRESSES.
Hollywood has certainly taken notice with the impeccably tailored, classic, yet oh-so-sexy Jackie O' dress. (Seriously, just google Jackie O' dress and see who pops up rocking it!) So I couldn't wait to try one on for myself and see what all the fuss is about!

And here it is...
It comes in several different variations ~ colors, lengths, sleeves, so I grabbed the first one that caught my eye.  I couldn't help but feel just a little bit more like a lady, once it was on. How feminine and sweet is this dress? Very Mad Men-esq too, no? 

(PS - who knew that these fuchsia pumps would go with everything?)
You'd think I would have stopped there,  but OH NO, I had to go and fall truly, madly, deeply for a SECOND Black Halo dress as well! This is the Hana Mini and I think I'm a little bit in love.
A friend stopped by to join in on the fun and gave the thumbs up approval. I literally did not want to take this dress off! So here's my dilemma ~ now I have to choose one!

I need your help, friends! Which one do you like best?
 Tanya Dempsey novembergrey.com Brian Carroll briancarrollart.com

Despite the tough decision at hand, it was a fabulous evening indeed. Wine flowing from one of my favorites ~ Lorenza Rose, and a perfect selection of fun little gift shopping for the upcoming holidays... I've seriously found a new place to shop in Hip'tique. Check them out online too! {Hiptique.com}
But I have to say that the best part of the evening was having a little chat with creative director and founder of Black Halo herself, Laurel Berman. She's so lovely and inspiring! Read on for an interview, and check back in soon for a Black Halo + Hip'tique giveaway only for November Grey readers!
Tanya Dempsey, Laurel Berman, Priscilla Sommer
  1. You were born in Spokane, and studied at the San Francisco Academy of Fashion. Is that what brought you to California initially?  Yes initially I moved here for my education, but in my opinion there are only 2 choices in the fashion business NY or LA & I definitely enjoy the California lifestyle. 
  2. Have you done any unique traveling that has inspired your creativity as an artist? Favorite country or city to visit?  Travel is obviously a huge influence in design, I have traveled to Paris, London, Barcelona, Holland, Greece, Hong Kong, Korea & Japan but Italy has always been a favorite.  Milan, Rome & Florence which is probably my favorite for it's history, beautiful architecture & culture especially the food!  
  3. Did you always know you wanted to be a designer?  Well, I was always obsessed with clothes & what I wore.  But growing up I wanted to travel so my best friend & I decided we wanted to be flight attendants.  I ordered the catalog & reviewed all the destinations & most importantly I compared each airline's uniform obviously in the end it was still about the clothes. 
  4. Did you dabble in any humbling or funny jobs before making your career happen?  I worked for BeBe when they only had THREE stores, I worked at the Union Street Store in SF while attending design school.  They honored me with "employee of the year" award which included a trip to LA accompanying Manny & Neda on a buying trip, my first to LA as an adult.  It was an incredible experience at the time.
  5.  Your creation of the famous "Jackie O" dress has turned into an iconic piece worn by celebrities, fashionistas, and women with an eye for tailoring and classically glamorous pieces. How did the inspiration spark to create this gorgeous dress? Have you always been a big Jackie O fan?  I was inspired by a high waisted skirt with the skinny belt we had produced the prior season, it was such a flattering fit it just seemed natural to build up.  We have several versions of that skirt referenced in many of our dresses but the Jackie O version with its couture referenced sleeve is definitely our signature style that resonates with all sizes & ages of our customer.
  6.  Where did the name Black Halo come from? Any special meaning?  Black Halo does refer to an Angel's halo but no ordinary Angel her halo is tarnished just a bit to reveal her naughty avant guard side.  And yes it's special because my husband came up with the name.
  7.  What piece of advice would you give to an aspiring designer?  Be prepared to work harder than you ever thought possible & never give up, the rewards are worth it! 
  8. What are the 5 key pieces you think every woman should have in her wardrobe?  The perfect jeans, a great fitting trouser, a tailored pencil dress, a sexy Jersey dress & an amazing Jacket to top it all off.