Because You're Ugly: Built by Wendy
Founded in 1991 by Wendy Mullin, Built by Wendy has become a staple must-see boutique and personal top five favorite while shopping in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Los Angeles. The label first gained some popularity through her custom made guitar straps that were photographed on everybody from (former) Orange County gal Gwen Stefani to everybody in Sonic Youth. The straps are still for sale online and in stores for $40 and are now available in a range of patterns: plaid, striped, ultra suede, tweed and canvas.
But soon after, Mullin drew attention with her charming Americana designs that ooze a DIY sort of mentality. Season after season, Built by Wendy doesn't fail to impress, with their madras dresses, button-up blouses and some of the best non-skinny jeans you can find around for $135. The fit is key with BbW apparel: never too tight, always flattering.
In a way, the designs are reminiscent of Marc by Marc Jacobs, but less expensive and sans all the obnoxious trendy stuff Marc sometimes succumbs to.
Built by Wendy's latest boutique location is right in the Fairfax district of Los Angeles, but, of course, you can peruse the latest collection and on sale past season items on the official website here.
Pictured left is my pick of SS08, the Madras Smocked Sundress ($200) in navy/white.