Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
Now that designer duo Brian Wolk and Claude Morais are officially Angelenos, the CFDA talents continue to draw their creative juices from their newfound hometown. Last night, the Ruffian designers transformed Parisian bistro-inspired venue (and former resto) The French Market Place in West Hollywood into a Haunted Mansion-esque Edwardian wonderland for their new line, Wolk Morais.
Drawing inspo from the world's denim capital, the LA-obsessed designers sent bustier and skirt jeanswear combos, red carpet-ready silk skirts paired with printastic tees, decadent brocade dresses with lace-up booties, and more elevated everyday looks down the runway. (Catch a glimpse from our Insta below.)
Once again, the LA-obsessed designers teamed with local talents for their spring 2016 line (dubbed Collection 2), like power stylist Elizabeth Stewart and fashionable framemakers l.a. Eyeworks; for beauty, Wolk and Morais tapped MAC Cosmetics and Paul Mitchell to create fresh-faced looks inspired by Cali girls.
As far as the guest list, FROWers included actress Elizabeth Berkeley, model/heiress Lydia Hearst, and Hunger Games star Isabelle Fuhrman, to name a few. Before the show kicked off, we sat down with Morais and Wolk to find out their latest local discoveries, the inspiration behind their new label's sophomore range, how the City of Angels has boosted their creativity, and more.
See more from the stylish soirée and snaps from behind the scenes above and read on below.
What drew you to this particular venue?
Brian: The space has such an amazing history of rebelliousness and culture, and so when we came here we were super inspired.
Claude: It's a great incubator for artists...
Brian: And as New York designers who moved to Los Angeles, the idea of being able to have such an amazing, gigantic, and wonderful space that we could take over and make our own is unheard of.
How has LA inspired Collection 2?
It's completely influenced the collection, from the color palette—we go hiking every night at Runyon Canyon—to the nonchalant glamour of Los Angeles to the idea of mixing evening and day. We're doing really couture work with denim which is something people usually don't do: showing off our tailoring skills with new fabrics and making stuff in traditional shapes in unusual fabrics, like a bra or a ball skirt.
Claude: It's all very LA to us, from beach to red carpet.
Tell us more about tonight's beauty look.
Claude: We wanted to keep this inner girl and that's why the makeup is minimal, the hair is just gorgeous. I wanted to see the real skin of this LA girl that we created tonight.
Any new local places you've discovered since you became official Angelenos?
Claude: El Compadre—it's on Sunset and Vista. Oh my god, [they have] the best margarita and the ambience is very burgundy and red.
Brian: We're really into Verve, that coffee shop [on Melrose Avenue] in West Hollywood.
Brian: We love all of the classics, like Sunday night fried chicken at Chateau Marmont.
How has LA life changed your daily routines and your creativity?
Brian: I don't drive, so I walk everywhere. I'm like the crazy...I walk like eight miles [a day]. Claude drives, thankfully.
Claude: It's like Driving Miss Daisy...For us being here was a great situation because we can have this life where we walk around and go to places without driving for a couple of days. It's really relaxing.
Brian: I've never walked into a gym before I moved to Los Angeles, so it's definitely affected our health. We go hiking, we go to the gym, we can relax...
Claude: ...mental health...
Brian: ...we also can really focus on our work because we're physically [and] mentally healthy, we can really put in our full effort into our creation.
Claude: We have to take it to go to the museums; we take it at Highland, you know? The Red Line and we're in Downtown in 15 minutes. We go to the Broad, MOCA, Disney Hall; we love to go to concerts. I think when you live here, it's like New York. You can be in New York and do nothing. We like to embrace it and go for adventures. We take the subway and try it and come back in an Uber or vice versa.
What was it like working with Elizabeth Stuart again?
Brian: As you know, Elizabeth is a fellow New Yorker. She's been our fairy godmother here and we work with her and she's one of our collaborators and mentors and a wonderful friend and guides us. She's been our fashion fairy godmother since we've been here.
Did you have any particular muses that inspired this collection?
Brian: Sure. Some of them are in the audience, like Isabelle Fuhrman and Lydia Hearst, who's one of our close friends and will be here tonight. It's all of these rebellious, young actresses and wonderful people.