Spring has officially sprung and with the new season brings exciting change. One we’re especially excited about is the addition of Melissa Magsaysay, multi-media journalist, stylist and author, who has joined us as contributing editor and lifestyle expert for The Grove and The Americana at Brand.
Melissa is a regular contributor to Los Angeles Times, The Hollywood Reporter, Glamour, C Magazine, WWD and Harpers Bazaar. She is also a regular on-air style expert to Access Hollywood, KTLA Morning News and has appeared on national morning shows as well. Check out her broadcast reel here. Her best-selling book, “City of Style: Exploring Los Angeles Fashion Bohemian to Rock,” was released in May 2012.
Covering everything from red carpets to runways, starting April 19th, Melissa will utilize her celebrated sense of style to share weekly tips, tricks and insights about fashion, beauty, dining and entertaining with you via email. Her articles also will live on The Grove and The Americana at Brand websites.
Here, Melissa gives us a bit more insight into her world, in her own words.
DID YOU ALWAYS KNOW YOU WANTED TO WRITE ABOUT FASHION? HOW DID YOU START YOUR CAREER?
I have always wanted to be involved in fashion. I had subscriptions to Vogue, W and Sassy magazines starting at 12 years old. I would flip through all of them (often two or three times) and trace the models’ clothes and tear photos out and tape them all over my walls. I loved the colors, the patterns, the models and seeing the nuances of different looks and trends. I was hooked. As I got older, I volunteered to be involved in any and all fashion-related activities such as coordinating the high school fashion show event by Showbox, designing costumes for my high school play and joining the Nordstrom Fashion Board. I studied English and writing in college. After graduation, I quickly got to work interning at magazines and assisting stylists in New York City.
Now, I love that I get to combine my love of visuals, fashion and writing across a few platforms, namely print, digital, books and television.
WHAT ARE YOUR GO-TO PIECES FOR CREATING THE PERFECT LOOK?
To me, perfect means clothes that make you feel confident and effortless. If I spend the day noticing my clothes, then it’s a sign it’s too much or that my outfit might be wearing me rather than the other way around.
My go-to look is usually a tailored button down shirt tucked into high waist, cropped jeans. Either vintage-style loafers (current favorites are my classic black Gucci slip-ons with gold horse-bit detail or perfectly worn-in brown leather loafers I picked up in Buenos Aires and of which I wish I had bought 10 pairs!) I rarely change out my gold jewelry and generally have a pair of Celine, Prada or Garrett Leight sunglasses with or on me.
I love uniform dressing, but not to the degree that it takes the fun or imagination out of fashion. Having a general template of pieces in a silhouette that suits your body, attitude and environment, and playing within that realm, is a great start to creating your own “perfect” look.
WHERE ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE PLACES TO EAT AND SHOP AT THE GROVE AND THE AMERICANA AT BRAND?
How much time do we have?! No, really though, I think like many people who visit each property, every experience is different and that’s especially fun if you have young kids like I do. My son loves the trolley but is always pointing out and discovering new things each time. I personally love shopping at Madewell for everyday essentials; Barneys New York for, well, everything; J. Crew for the family and me; Under Armour and Nike for working out; Apple for office must-haves and Nordstrom (particularly the revamped beauty counters) to satiate my inner beauty junkie.
As for restaurants, Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill is a current favorite, not just at The Grove, but in all of Los Angeles. It not only has mouth-watering sushi, but the fried chicken with wasabi honey is up there with my other vice, chocolate. The Whisper Restaurant and Lounge is perfect for a girls’ night or post-movie glass of wine. It’s such a great spot. And, over at The Americana at Brand, Bourbon Steak is my go-to for lunch. It has a fantastic menu and the setting is beautiful. And, of course, there’s Din Tai Fung. The best dumplings on the planet! What could be better than shopping followed by its dumplings? Yum.