Orange County is already a shopping mecca. Led by a slew of A-list designer boutiques, a slate of new shops promise to keep us in the fashion big leagues.
New Haute HauntsWhile the label's name isn't hard to find in department stores, until now, OC never had an actual Calvin Klein retail store. The new South Coast Plaza store is only the sixth location in the iconic design house's retail portfolio. The accessible White Label line will include everything from underwear and jeans to eyewear, shoes and fragrances for men and women. The store will also carry "exclusives" like a forthcoming new line. (714) 662-1901; www.calvinklein.com
Canali has made it a point to be as famous for outfitting Hollywood's leading men (picture George Clooney in Michael Clayton) as for its hand-tailored Italian suits. Wardrobe designers know a Canali suit makes a bold statement about the man wearing it. The South Coast Plaza store carries accessories, sportswear and suits, of course -- all designed, hand-sewn and hand-finished in Italy. (714) 662-1800; www.canali.it
Be sure to take a look at Fashion Island's cheekily named Peek... Aren't You Curious. Former execs from Lucky Jeans and Gap have joined together to create this exceptionally with-it boutique for children. By sourcing their own fabric and prints from around the world, they promise to create styles of the highest workmanship and finishing for anyone up to 10 years old. (949) 719-7732; www.peekarentyoucurious.com
Newport Beach residents Debbie and Bryan Davimes have been selling their private label T-shirt line, Tee Party, through Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Anthrolopogie. This summer they're stocking their new shop Sienna Brown at Corona del Mar Plaza with the tees as well as a mix of local labels (think Lauren Conrad) and international designers such as Orla Kiely, Metalicus and Bella Jones. (949) 644-5045
After scouring the earth for inspiration in unique vintage jeans, Adriano Goldschmied has been supplying fashionistas with trendy
AG Adriano Goldschmeid
Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus have long carried his ready-to-wear lines, but now South Coast Plaza will be home to one of only a handful of Oscar de la Renta boutiques in the U.S. Famous for feminine looks, his spring '08 styles take a classic twist on this season's trends such as safari jackets and tribal patterns (pictured). Expect full skirts and bright florals from the pre-fall collection. (714) 754-9044; www.oscardelarenta.com
Although shops like Erica Dee and The Closet carry sunglasses from hotter than hot eyewear designer Dita, the company's complete collection can only be purchased at Dita Legends, its exclusive retails stores. Few and far between, the shops can be found on Melrose Avenue, and in Hong Kong, Tokyo, Nagoya, and come July, at Fashion Island. www.dita.com
Also at Corona del Mar Plaza, UNA will soon stock emerging designers as well as founder Audrey McLoghlin's own up-and-coming private label. Find stylish yet practical styles from denim to cashmere and trenches to hand-knitted bikinis.
Island lovers can get their Tommy Bahama fix at the Irvine Spectrum. To keep you browsing their exhaustive tropical selections -- men's and women's sportswear, golfwear, swimwear, footwear, accessories, and plenty of fun-in-the-sun home wares -- they'll help you re-energize at the adjacent café. If it takes more than food to get you back in the action, they'll even ply you with cocktails made with the company's own Tommy Bahama Rum, an "ultra-premium" rum from Barbados. (949) 753-8808; www.tommybahama.com
Unique BoutiquesTucked amidst auto repair shops on Costa Mesa's Westside, Generic Youth is decorated with funky home furnishings and vintage surfboards. Ever-changing racks display the boutique's own fashion line, which is heavy on adaptive reuse (e.g. sweatshirts made from old beach towels). Most items are handmade onsite in limited edition. The boutique also showcases up-and-coming local designers through its "pop-up stores" -- month-long shop-within-shop displays. Recent pop-ups have included Newport Beach surfwear line Atwater and Laguna-based beach chic startup ChristineCy. Generic Youth also features a three-chair hair salon helmed by the folks from Hampton Salon in Newport Beach. Generic? We think not. 1609 Pomona Ave., Costa Mesa, (949) 650-5511; www.genericyouth.com