Left: Kristen on her back deck wearing an Upstate raw silk wrap, a Vena Cava dress, Rachel Comey clogs, and an Anndra Neen silver choker. In the summer, Kristen and her husband Joe entertain a lot outdoors. Right: In the dining room, the table is Mastercraft burl from the '70s, the light fixture is from The Future Perfect. Says Kristen, "It looks modern and kinda fancy, but is made of plastic." The painting, of a '20s New York socialite, was a gift from Joe's mom. Enlarge Image
If you've ever walked into the TenOverSix boutique in Los Angeles, you know there's a pretty stylish mind behind it. Cleverly curated with a truly incredible array of our most favorite indie designers, curiosities, and a shoe wall that will make your heart skip a beat, the two-year-old outpost is not only our go-to when we're in town, but it's a source of major inspiration...thanks to co-owner and creative director Kristen Lee. We love this lady so much, we were thrilled to get a back-stage pass to her Nichols canyon abode, which is not only a treasure trove of fashion but it's also an architect's dream. Designed by Southern California icon Ed Fickett, the home has been lovingly restored by Lee and her writer-director husband, Joe. We could go on and on about the Hockney'esque pool and a walk-in closet that's actually a whole room...but we'll leave that to our exclusive snaps. Read on for an inside peek at this L.A. style star's very fashionable life.
Kristen and her dog Kingsley Jeffrey Cole (aka "King") by the pool. She's wearing Benjamin eyewear, '50s vintage sequined swimwuit, TenOverSix pink Katy peep-toe pumps, and an old pink button-front shirt that she dipped in bleach. Enlarge Image
Who would you say is your style soul-mate?
"A woman who could simultaneously embody the '50s housewife, '60s gamine and early '90s grunge, if you know her I'd love to be introduced."
Tell us a little bit about what's new at your store TenOverSix.
"There's always a lot happening at the shop. We are just starting to see fall '10 items trickle in, which is very exciting [and dangerous!]. I'm in love with fall Bodkin, Vena Cava, Peter Jensen ruffle shoes, Anndra Neen jewelry, Electric Feathers dresses, LD Tuttle for VPL boots, Alexander Wang handbags, Rachel Comey, Slow and Steady Wins the Race, new TenOverSix coats, and Lover. And we have a few very exciting design collaborations in the pipeline, two for spring '11, and one which hits the store this September, Anndra Neen for TenOverSix Shoes."
Left: A sculpture atop a pile of books in the den. "This little skeleton man is wearing all Dries van Noten, and that's the only reason I love him." Right: In the den (it's a really big, open room), Kristen wears Wood Wood high-waist jeans, a vintage crochet rosette top, Anna Sheffield earrings, and Anndra Neen for TenOverSix Kat pumps (out in Sept!). All of the furniture is vintage. Kristen found the Louis blue velvet chairs on eBay. Enlarge Image
What are the five key pieces you find yourself wearing constantly?
"Acne denim jacket, Wood Wood high-waisted jeans, vintage Cartier watch, Anndra Neen cuff, Bodkin dresses, and lots of shoes."
What's your best cheap score of late?
"An orange Vena Cava dress that was a gift from the designers, it's become my go-to easy summer dress."
In her closet, Kristen wears a vintage gold pleated lamé bolero, Bodkin black silk dress, vintage Cartier watch, and TenOverSix leopard Kinski booties. Her closet is a third bedroom-turned-dressing room. "I set it up like I would for styling a shoot: all clothing on rolling racks, organized by category, all jewelry and accessories on display, and a steamer in the corner, which makes it very easy to get dressed. This is King asking me why there are no clothes on the floor today." Enlarge Image
Do you have anything in your closet that you couldn't stand to part with?
"Everything. I'm a collector—in the most hoard-y version of the word—of fashion and inspiration, so I always need friends to help me clear out anything! Editing my closet, or my office for that matter, is not a strong suit."
In the kitchen, "we didn't feel like we needed a kitchen table, so instead it's a bit of a lounge." The pink chair is by Justin Beal and the artwork is a mix including a Massimo Vitale photo and Humans by Mike Mills posters. Enlarge Image
The art in your house is amazing, and a lot of it is also stocked at TenOverSix. Can you tell us about any new exciting pieces you have on display?
"We have a new art installation which will start this fall entitled In A Single Shoe by Jessica Mitrani…an amazing art piece of shoes!"
Left: On the deck, Kristen wears a vintage Levi's denim vest and a T by Alexander Wang dress. Right: By the pool, Kristen wears Benjamin eyewear, a vintage '50s sequined swimsuit, an old pink button-front shirt that she dipped in bleach, an Anndra Neen silver cuff, and TenOverSix pink Katy peep-toes. Enlarge Image
Who are your style heroes or the people that most inspire you when you are getting dressed?
"Vivienne Westwood, Coco Chanel, Alexander McQueen, Cindy Sherman, Andy Warhol, Edie Sedgwick, Jean Seberg in Breathless, Courtney Love from the very early '90s, Catherine Deneuve, Tippi Hedren in any Hitchcock movie, Grace Kelly, Brigitte Bardot, Debbie Harry, and the women of Helmut Newton and Slim Aarons."
"Classic, eclectic, grunge."
In the entrance, a Furtographs portrait of her dog Kingsley. Says Kristen, "you can get any pose out of King with a T-R-E-A-T!" Kristen wears a vintage Levi's jacket-turned-vest, a TenOverSix silk dress sample, and TenOverSix Viva Q caramel suede booties. Enlarge Image
You're definitely an expert shopper. What are some tricks of the trade you could give to our readers?
"I kinda hate trends. If they're so in one moment they'll surely be out and overdone the next, so I would urge shoppers to invest in pieces they really love the design of, what fits in with their style, and quality pieces they can wear for years."
Left: Kingsley in Kristen's husband Joe's home office. Right: A Philippe Stark gun-lamp with a vintage pink phone. Enlarge Image
Is there anything you would never be caught wearing?
"Cargo pants or ugly shoes."
Kristen's accessories on display in her closet. Enlarge Image
Do you have a secret store that you're willing to reveal, or a favorite neighborhood shopping spot?
"Shhhh...it's TenOverSIx. In all seriousness, since I buy for the store, I kinda plan my next seasonal wardrobe every Fashion Week while shopping and meeting with designers. Ebay's not a secret, right?"
Left: Kristen and King by the pool. King wears a Swiss Mountain Dog collar that was a gift from Kristen's best friend. "His underbelly is very spotted because he gets too much sun. He's a little George Hamilton, a real sun-worshiper!" Right: In the den, Kristen wears an Acne denim jacket, A Detacher floral jumpsuit, a vintage belt, and vintage Miu Miu platforms. The brass light is a vintage piece from the '60s. Enlarge Image
Your house is stocked with so many amazing books, what are you reading now or can't live without?
"On the daily news front: The Huffington Post, The New York Times, and Refinery29. For fiction: Anna Karenina (in the thick of it right now!), anything by Salinger, Henry Miller, Capote, Kerouac, and Hemingway."
Kristen's Anndra Neen for TenOverSix shoes, debuting this fall. Enlarge Image
What song best embodies your style?
"'No Aloha' by the Breeders."
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Photos by Justin Coit