Photography by Trevor Smith

Clare Vivier

Designer

| Echo Park

When we’re young, most of us feel lost when it comes to choosing a career, a select few of us are confident we’re on the right path, and then— there is Clare Vivier, a woman who legally decried her destiny before she was even living it. That’s right, when filling out her marriage license, Vivier listed herself as a “bag designer” years before she’d debut her eponymous accessories collection— if only all of us could be so clairvoyant, are we right? Previously working as a French journalist, Vivier found the lack of functional, yet fashionable office accessories nonsensical—need we remind you, this was a time when bulky IBM laptop cases reigned supreme— and soon, her made-in-LA, leather goods label was born (OK, give or take some serious pounding of the pavement for the right local artisans and a successful blog launch too). Vivier’s designs update classic shapes like the portfolio and messenger bags using a modern eye and a tinge of whimsy; a surrealist illustration may trickle down a fold-over clutch or an iPad sleeve may boast Vivier’s signature two-tone stripe— it’s in the subtle details where Vivier’s managed to make the mundane chic. Case in point: her new velvet crossbody pouches conveniently made to fit an iPhone, or her vintage-feeling circular bags rendered in new-age vegan leather. She’s collaborated with names like Steven Alan, Gwyneth Paltrow’s GOOP and Apple, and, naturally, nearly every fashion frontrunner has been spotted with one of her pom-pom-bedecked bags (Karlie Kloss, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and SJP included). Vivier even hand-delivered gifts to set for one of Hollywood’s most legendary casts (hint: the show put AMC back on the map), but we’ll let her tell that story… Here, she sits down with CITIPHILE to reveal her little black book on LA.

NEIGHBORHOOD STANDBY: Bestia (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x).

COFFEE OR TEA: Espresso from Alfred on Sunset (MAP IT, x) or Blue Bottle in Echo Park (MAP IT, x)— both are delicious and they keep me going.

ALL-TIME FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Bestia— the branzino is so fresh and delicious, and the alla’nduja pizza is to die for.

COCKTAIL DE LA NUIT: Red wine from the Loire Valley; I love Bar Bandini (MAP IT, x) because its owners and all of the bartenders are the best.

LADIES LUNCH: AOC (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) or SoHo House (MAP IT, x).

WHERE TO BRING OUT-OF-TOWNERS: Elysian Park (x) hikes; “Secret Stairs” walks (found in the amazing book, Secret Stairs: A Walking Guide to the Historic Staircases of Los Angeles by Charles Fleming).

BEST BRUNCH: No favorite spot per se, but I do love the poached egg toast from Blue Bottle.

MUSIC PICK: I like hip-hop and R&B; the best playlists are at Jon & Vinny’s (MAP IT, x).

BEST PEOPLE WATCHING: LACMA (MAP IT, x) outdoors on a lovely day.

HEALTHY STAPLE: Forage in Silver Lake (MAP IT, x) for their kale salad, roasted chicken and another side.

GUILTY PLEASURE: Burger and fries from Café Stella (MAP IT, x).

LA’S BEST-KEPT SECRET: The Secret Stairs walks.

FIRST THING I MISS WHEN I’M AWAY: The light.

REGULAR AT: Proof (MAP IT, x), Viet (MAP IT, x) and Dune (MAP IT, x)– my favorite lunch spots on work days; they are all very good. Get the pickle plate at Dune.

DATE NIGHT STANDBY: Ostrich Farm (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) because we can walk there and it is always good. Sit at the bar.

FAMILY-FRIENDLY PICK: Taix (MAP IT, x) has been our family restaurant since we moved here. It’s always good to sit at the bar with the whole family; it’s an extremely kid-friendly place.

TO GET INSPIRED: The Broad Museum (MAP IT, x).

CLOSET CHECK: I’m most comfortable in tomboy attire: a blend of classic pieces with menswear influences and always some modern accents like a silk scarf, new loafer or, of course, a new CV bag.

ACCESSORIES PICK: The Clare V. stores in Santa Monica (x), West Hollywood (x) and Silver Lake (x)-– there’s a selection of hats, jewelry, scarves, shoes, etc.

BEST HOME DÉCOR: Our home is eclectic and represents us really well with a wonderful mix of things we’ve collected over the years. Since our son has grown older, we’ve made updates like creating a very open (and not child-friendly) staircase up to the third floor.

BEST HOST/HOSTESS GIFTS: I give monogrammed coasters from our collection or a calendar from Clare Crespo.

GIFTS FOR HIM: Usually, I’ll stop at Steven Alan (MAP ITx); I always find something there for guys.

FOR THE KIDS: Sweet William in Silver Lake (MAP IT, x).

BEAUTY BLACK BOOK: Tbe Streicher sisters (MAP IT, x) for hair, makeup and brows.

FIT PICK: Pilates and hiking in Elysian Park with Oscar and Paco.

ULTIMATE LA MOMENT: When Mad Men ended, Jon Hamm bought wrapped gifts for the entire cast from us and I hand-delivered them to set. CP

Clare’s LA

clare-map

From L to R: First Row: Blue Bottle Coffee; Jeff Koons at LACMA; Pasta at Bestia; Dessert by Proof Bakery. Second Row: Cookies; Alfred beans; Clare V. accessories; Inside Ostrich Farm.

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