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A Classic To Ck Out

January 06, 2008|Erin Weinger | Times Staff Writer

Calvin Klein has come to California, sort of. The brand, celebrating 40 years, was to open its first retail outpost at Beverly Center on Thursday. But fans of designer Francisco Costa's fluid runway designs may be disappointed, because items from the highest rung on the CK ladder won't be available at the shop.

Instead there is an impressive offering of lower-priced White Label sportswear, as well as fragrance, accessories and the underwear that made Calvin a household name. Basically, White Label is to Calvin Klein what DKNY is to Donna Karan, which means lots of affordable basics. A puff sleeve black dress ($118) can be mixed with most anything in your closet; grown-up merino wool sweaters ($80) and calfskin belts ($39.50) inject men's wardrobes with a dose of straightforward mellowness.

Klein is a fragrance rock star, thanks to such scents as Obsession, still packaged in its kitschy 1985 bottle, and CK One, a popular unisex spray. Both are available here, along with the newest cologne, Calvin Klein Man. Like a stylish general store, the 10,000-square-foot modern space also houses a selection of utilitarian totes, wristwatches, sunglasses and ties.

Although Calvin Klein the designer sold his company and moved on years ago, his signature Minimalism remains. So anyone seeking a head-turning outfit or handbag may want to venture elsewhere. 8500 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles. No phone number available at press time. 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.


Cusp: This meticulously edited boutique acts like a "best of" to big sister Neiman Marcus' contemporary department. Crown jewels from Cusp's party-wear-heavy collection are on sale until there's nothing left, which means Citizen of Humanity Jeans for $40 and Stuart Weitzman shoes for less than $200. Christian Louboutin footwear is also up to 65% off, which might leave you enough dough for an Assouline coffee-table book or a Chanel lipstick on your way out the door. Westfield Century City, 10250 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 552-0300. 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.

London Sole annual sample sale today and Monday: Not just a passing trend, ballet flats are a wardrobe staple, thanks in no small part to celebrity favorite London Sole. Now the store is offering a selection of discontinued samples and leather bags for $40, in colors from one end of the rainbow to the other. Although there are a few basic black styles to be found, store employees say that shoppers will have better luck finding flats in pinks and greens. London Sole shoes are regularly priced over the $200 mark, making this sale a must for those seeking stylish comfort. 1331 Montana Ave., Santa Monica. (310) 255-0937. 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.

Hillary Rush Storewide Sale through Wednesday: The 3rd Street mainstay has become one of L.A.'s coolest destinations for contemporary clothing such as jeans by 18th Amendment, light-as-air tops by Sunner and dresses by Nili Lotan. Walking into the inviting space feels like taking a private tour through your coolest friend's closet, complete with salespeople who actually seem to be enjoying their jobs. Now everything in the store is 25% off, including a wispy Alexander Wang cardigan in highly covetable neon yellow and an oversized Kenneth Jay Lane flower ring that could leave accessory hounds with heart palpitations. 8222 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles. (323) 852-0088. 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.

A.P.C. Sale through Jan. 16: The hipper-than-thou French label carries the wares needed to walk down a Parisian street in style. A selection of the brand's well-made apparel and accessories for men and women is now up to 50% off. A Sundance-appropriate hooded parka, once a cool $686, is now $343, while the brand's comfy cotton T-shirts, which have a devoted following, can be yours for $23, half off the regular $46 price tag. Belts, shoes, bags and dresses are in the sale mix as well. And once your man slips into A.P.C.'s cashmere jeans, you may never get him out of them. 619 N. Croft Ave., West Hollywood. (323) 297-0414. 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.

Dari: The Valley has lots of hidden fashion gems, and Dari is one of them. The store, owned by Melanie Shatner, daughter of "Star Trek's" William Shatner, is offering splurge-worthy goods at steal prices. Feminine frocks by Jovovich-Hawk and Missoni, Sonia Rykiel separates and some of the season's best Phillip Lim party dresses are among the goodies on sale at up to 80% off. 12184 Ventura Blvd., Studio City. (818) 762-3274. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.

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