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- Photos by Elizabeth Daniels
- Black Halo designer Laurel Berman.
- Samples that include the hit two-piece dress.
- Rolls of Black Halo fabric inside the production offices.
- A rainbow of product ready to hit the sales floor.
- What’s a huge space without a classic car for decor?
- Chandeliers and fresh flowers are scattered throughout the building.
- Berman’s desk.
Over a decade ago, LA designer Laurel Berman launched her own line after being bored creatively at work. Black Halo began as a sportswear line filled with the perfect knit tops fit for the LA girl's uniform of denim and sky-high heels and has since evolved into classy dresses and separates that are easily spotted by their signature necklines and silhouettes. "I'm going to prove that LA can do more than casual," the designer said of her initial goal with the line.
Now, the busy Berman is working out of a 15,000-square-foot space in DTLA and designing 12 collections a year as well as five evening collections. We're tired just thinking about it! Everything has been made in LA since Black Halo opened its doors and while her "Jackie O" dress made the brand a fashion lover's go-to, it is her two-piece dressing that is all the rage right now and Black Halo's best sellers. Next up for the company? "I want to start three-piece dressing and am in the process of working on some really fun collaborations." We'll be on the lookout.
What inspired Black Halo?
"As a Designer, I am always searching for that niche in the market that is yet to be fulfilled and it was this curiosity that fuelled Black Halo. The company started out as a separates brand, designing tops to work back with designer jeans that were all the rage back in the 90's. The collection has evolved to glamorous separates and dresses which have since become part of the Black Halo DNA."
How did you come up with the name?
"A Black Halo to me symbolizes the beauty of contradiction, it's the rebel hidden within each and every woman."
How long have you been in this studio space?
"We have been on Mateo Street for 11 years. We started out down the street in a smaller space and moved to this location 5 years ago."
Who is the Black Halo girl?
"She is the working girl who is confidently making her way from the desk to dinner, from the boardroom to the bar. Our dresses are meant to empower the women who wear them."
In a nutshell, can you describe your design process?
"We have 12 deliveries a year so I have to constantly be evolving in my designs and offerings. Luckily I have a great team that I work with and we inspire each other every day. We start with fabric shopping, or digging through archives of vintage bodies/ silhouettes, and this leads to new innovative designs. Also looking at fast fashion and seeing what young girls are wearing–it's amazing how inspiring a night on the town can be!"
What is the most difficult part?
"I try to embrace all challenges but the most difficult part of this process is being able to satisfy everyone and accepting critique with a brave face."
What is your go-to Black Halo piece?
"Right now it's my two piece dressing. I love wearing them together or mixing and matching them separately back to more casual pieces in my closet."
This area has really built up over the past few years! Where are some of your favorite places to wine and dine after hours?
"Fifty Seven, Bestia, Ace Hotel, Factory Kitchen, Church & State and Zinc Café."
· Black Halo [Official Site]
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