Growing up in L.A. and frequenting nightclubs, art shows and punk gigs, Danny Fuentes became a fan, follower and friend to purveyors of alternative fashion, which led to creating spaces for them in his own gallery and club events. In his Friday fashion feature, Fuentes shoots and spotlights the most creative creatures and colorfully caustic clothes whores in Los Angeles, beloved in the clubs and on Instagram.
Says Fuentes: Los Angeles is a breeding ground for creativity, a place where an excess of events offers opportunities to dress up and soak up the culture seven nights a week if one desires. You can make the weekend last all seven days if you really want to, and make going out an extension of your livelihood. In L.A. less is more and more is always more interesting We live in a post–David Bowie universe, a generation of post-everything. In some way or another, everything has already been done. But there are those who pull from the past to help shape the future. Those who make it a mission to stand out, provoke, question norms and create dialogue just by stepping out in a public situation and forcing you to look in awe at the dazzling display of their sheer existence.
Behold this week’s spotlight on personal style so wild, it’s lethal.
“Costume designer/sparkle queen/pug mom
Glitter Death store owner/stylist/artist/nerd”
L.A. WEEKLY: What do you do?
RIO WARNER: My main passion is costume design, the more elaborate and insane the better. I’m known for my handmade custom pieces for clients such as Rihanna, Ariana Grande, Lady Gaga, Britney Spears and Beyoncé.
What are you inspired by?
Colors, textures, anything shiny and sparkly!! The more gaudy and over-the-top the better. I love the drama. My roots are in punk, so I’ve always brought that edge to my work as well.
Who is your style icon? Why?
I’d have to say Vivienne Westwood. She’s a badass bitch. She doesn’t care about the trends or the Kardashians, she cares about creating a beautiful, unique garment that makes a statement. She’s definitely an originator of punk fashion and has stayed true to her roots, all while using her platform for political activism and fighting for sustainability in fashion way before it was the hip thing to do. When I fully committed to being a designer as my career, I got her orb logo tattooed on my wrist as a constant inspiration and reminder to always be myself and not take people’s shit.
What was your most memorable nightlife look?
Honestly, I throw together whatever weird shit is lying around my house. I recently went out in a giant iridescent poof ball I turned into a headpiece that was wedding decorations on the wall for my friend Wayne Coyne from The Flaming Lips and a holographic Roberto Cavalli jacket, I was basically a walking disco ball. I wore a child’s Big Bird costume out recently, and a jacket made of tinsel that leaves a sparkle trail wherever I go, or I’ll paint my face and be a random clown at a party. Life’s short, have fun, who cares?
Favorite L.A. nightlife stuff:
We grew up as insane little punk kids, so I love seeing what a great community of fashion-obsessed weirdos are at Sex Cells. People always serve amazing looks there. Soft leather is also rad. I love the bougie stuff, too … love an open bar, love a fashion party with photo booths and swag bags. But I’m just as happy at a hole-in-the-wall followed by a greasy-ass taco truck.
Follow Rio on Instagram at @RioWarner.