Inspiration

Laura O’Dell

Fashion DesignerSilverlake, CAPhotos & Story by Lauri Levenfeld
There is good design in everything touched by Laura O’Dell. Not only is she one half of the coolest wife & husband fashion design duo, she is now owner of the cheeky, fun Bucks and Does boutique in Silverlake (the hipster hood of LA). The storefront houses Laura’s most chic curation, a style that is uniquely her own.

The yurt in the back acting as the studio design center showcases just how different and out of the box the O’Dells choose to go. Laura with her upbeat attitude and fun-loving family has created a dream job situation where she can do and be what she loves, and still have time to custom design the wall paper.

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1. Tell us about yourself and your passion for your work.  

In a nutshell I’m a wife, mom of 2, dog owner, store owner, designer and a huge fan of all things fitness related.  In my “spare” time I like to run and look for recipes on pinterest.  My favorite magazines are usually food/fitness/home related as opposed to fashion.  I find that my mind needs a break when I’m not working since my professional life revolves around clothes.  I love what I do and am so grateful I get to wake up every morning and go into my Silverlake yurt to “work” ,which never feels like work, because I enjoy every aspect of it.  Creativity comes naturally to me and once I love something it’s hard for me to change my mind which makes me a very decisive designer.  I rarely go back and forth on what I want which I hear is rare when as a designer.

 

2. With two clothing lines, a storefront, two kids, and a husband as partner- how do you do it all and still remain calm?

I think my saving grace is that I love what I do so work rarely feels like work.  Don’t get me wrong, deadlines are stressful but i’m a very positive person so it takes a lot to get me down.

I like to recharge my battery by going on a run or cooking up a yummy meal that takes a certain level of patience and follow through. I just made Paella for the first time on Sunday and it was out of this world.

 

3. What was your A-HA moment?  

One of my big A-HA moments was when we decided to open up our store, Bucks and Does.  We had been searching for a larger studio space for sometime and kept coming across your run-of-the-mill warehouse spaces.  My husband and I saw a listing on Craigslist for a store for sale on Sunset Blvd.  When we went to check it out we freaked out.  It was right in Sunset Junction which has always been one of our favorite local hang out spots.  We hadn’t really dreamed of being shop owners but the location was so ideal we couldn’t pass it up.  We were literally like A-HA “We can divide up the space, throw up a wall and have a sliver of the space as retail and the rest as studio”.  We got our act together real quick.  All of this went down in late March/early April 2013.  We opened the store May 17th of that year,  exactly 2 weeks after our daughter Layla was born.  It was a crazy whirlwind to say the least but we successfully pulled it off.

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4. Explain the yurt in the backyard of Buck and Does?

We needed just a bit more office space once we determined how many square feet were going to be used for retail and wanted to utilize our backyard space in the most time efficient/cost effective way.  We had always been a big fan of yurts (Treebones in Big Sur is one of our favorite places in the world) so we went ahead and ordered one.  It’s so easy to do.  We literally ordered it online from Pacific Yurts  and had our contractor put it together and he also built the deck around it.  Other than the fact that it gets REALLY hot in the summer and REALLY cold in the winter we love it.

 

5. You seem to implement design into everything you do, including your home, where do you find inspiration?

I’m a big fan of Pinterest.  I find that I use it more than magazines for inspiration.

I often times create mood boards with it because it helps me flush out ideas.  I also love thrifting and find a lot of great inspiration at flea markets.

 

6. What has been your biggest challenge as an entrepreneur?  

Hahaha, cash flow!!  Isn’t that everyone’s?  Growth is amazing and wonderful but with it comes a certain amount of risk.  You have to be willing to risk it all if you have to and Jason and I are always cool with that.  We always say if one day the shi* hits the fan we’re cool giving it all up and living somewhere remote in the mountains with our kids.  Of course that will probably never happen but it’s always good to know that in a case like that we would still be happy.  It’s a very grounding approach to success I think.

 

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7. What are the must-haves for holiday?

Oooh, Holiday.  Well I’m personally a big fan of jewelry and we just got a new designer in at Bucks and Does that I’m gushing over Fay Jewelry.  The designers main inspiration is native american culture however a lot of native american jewelry is cast in silver and she does hers in gold which is crazy amazing.  It’s going to take every ounce of my being not to personally take one of everything I ordered from her line for myself.  We also have a gorgeous silk floral maxi from my line The ODells which would be an amazing dress to wear to a holiday gathering.

8. Where do you see yourself in five years?  

Probably with another Bucks and Does already opened or in the works.  In terms of designing I see lots of growth happening so probably a bigger studio space which would mean a bigger retail space for Bucks and Does in Silverlake.

For more on Laura, head to Joliegazette for fashion fun and holiday gift ideas! 

 

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