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May 19, 2017

Joyce Azria + Avec Les Filles Pop-Up

Nicole Richie & Joyce Azria
Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski
Stephanie Liu
Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski
Kelly Sawyer
Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski
Angela Fink, Alana Hadid & Taye Hansberry
Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski
Joyce Azria & Lubov Azria
Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski
Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski
Nicole Richie
Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski

Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski
Summer Water Rose
Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski

Photo Credit: Owen Kolasinski

Un bisou—that is how Joyce Azria welcomed her guests on Thursday evening, May 18, at the opening of her pop-up shop for Avec Les Filles. Upon entering the venue—located just a stroller walk away from the mother of five’s L.A. home—guests were greeted with ballerinas dancing atop vintage sage- and blush-hued tiles, a remnant from the building’s previous owner.

Of the Parisian-inspired line, Azria beamed, “It’s my culture.” The 35-year-old designer and daughter of Max Azria was born in France, and though she came of age in Los Angeles, she never forgets her beginnings. “Even though I left Paris at such a young age, I feel like it never left me,” she explained. “My parents struggled a lot to achieve the American dream, and it kind of went from struggles and tough days to a really luxurious life in America. So holding on to Paris is holding on to my roots and the little girl inside of me that wanted everything.”

Perhaps it’s that youth that pushed the former BCBGeneration Creative Director to think deeper when it came to venturing out on her own. Beyond the denim mini skirts, leather jackets, metallic sandals and cool-girl accessories lies a deeper story, one that’s alluded to in her branding. Adorning the walls of the pink-swathed store were transparent posters inked with the words “a story told by Joyce Azria.” “This company in general was formed on moral and ethical values,” Azria said. “It has a really beautiful moral compass. The color pink hopes to inspire optimism and symbolizes that we care about our people as we do our thread colors. That culture is something that exists when you pick up a piece. We’ve hired close to 200 people already. It’s a big deal for me to give people jobs and hope, and to make beautiful clothes.”

In those garments, which lured in guests by the dozens, lives a familiar joie de vivre and thoughtfulness that keeps the customer in mind. “I wanted people to afford my clothes. I think the millennial customer has really helped evolve how shopping is defined for a certain age group. They’ll save money and buy real leather or buy name-brand new shoes, but they’re not so fussy about their clothes. I wanted to create something around the philosophy: where the clothes were not expensive and the accessories felt like stepping into this elevated product and life. It just had to resonate with the new girl, with the way she shops.”

Ruffling with the concept of being avec les filles or “with the girls” was model Kelly Sawyer, who named taco night as her favorite to-do with Azria, (who is a self-proclaimed homebody). “She’s a brilliant cook and has a beautiful homelife and family,” Sawyer said. “She makes you feel like you’re family when you walk in the door.”

Of course, during family time, there’s also a bit of indulging in classic American television. “We like to do really important things like watch Beverly Hills 90210, the original, and get tans,” laughed Nicole Richie who was also in attendance. On a serious note, she also praised Azria saying, “I’ve been next to Joyce through this process. To watch something that she created in her mind come to life is so beautiful. It’s such a representation of who she is.” The House of Harlow designer also recalled swapping sage advice, telling C, “Joyce says to always come from a truthful place.” Later, Richie found her place of truth as she further supported her friend by carrying out large bags filled with freshly purchased French-girl goods.

By: Ericka Franklin

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