There are people you follow on Instagram becuase they have consistant beautiful photos, amazing product and the kind of life you wished you had. They have that natural bad-ass vibe and yet come across as ethereal. They’re the fucking cool girls from California who actually live that life you see in their feed.
By total accident (or was it?) I wandered into the boutique of one of my followees that I had admired since before I left on my journey. I’d been to Topanga a few times back when I lived in LA, but this place was not there before…that’s because they had officially opened their doors three days prior to my discovery of the eclectic boutique.
The shop was quiet, open and full of light coming in from the windowed-roof. The open doors and windows in the warm summer air blew about the leather fringed-medicine bags hanging about the store and dream catchers displayed in the window. One of the three owners, “Angie”, was present in a creme slip dress, burgundy leather roper boots and guitar in hand, she had striking blue eyes and a natural beauty. The store is one large room with a wonderful deck out back with buddhist prayer flags strewn across the railing of the balcony looking onto a mass of plant life below. Out in the back deck was Dominique, another bad-ass beauty working on one of her many succulent plant terrariums (the store is adorned with them) potted into old motorcycle parts. You can find out more via the DC Custom Designs Motorcycle shop in Venice, CA HERE.
I was invited to hangout on the deck and chit-chat about the stores opening, what I should do when I go to Joshua Tree and a lot of other non-related work stuff. I admit it wasn’t much of an interview, as it was an unplanned encounter and I was just hanging out really and enjoying the vibe.
I bought a 70’s romper that belonged to A Wild at Heart’s vintage collection (another woman I adore on Instagram), as the Hideout does a pop-up style vintage rack of clothes that they rotate out. They also sell plenty of Bandit Brand shirts, some designed by one of my previous interviewees, Filth Mart. It’s a small world on the West Coast.
Here’s the story of the Heyoka Leather (courtesy of their website):
Heyoka Leather is an old-fashioned family business. At least as much so as you could ask for in the dysfunctional chaotic LA rock and roll world where it was born.
Started unofficially and quite by accident in Venice Beach CA in 2007 by Leslie Crow when she began making dream catchers for friends. As the demand grew, she branched out into hand beaded medicine bags and purses, using traditional skills learned from her grandmother. A year later she moved to the Rastafarian barrio of Mid-City Los Angeles, and brought in her longtime friends and partners in crime (cousins) Rachel Avraham and Angela Bruyere (of Mogg Jeans).