Robert Rodriguez was drawn to his current space because of its sweeping views of DTLA. “I’m from New York, so I like that I still feel the city vibe here. I feel like I’m among it, which makes me feel at home while I’m working. It’s a whole different scene than other parts of L.A.,” he says, explaining why he selected the space that his namesake company has occupied for the past three years.
How the space would look and feel came easily Rodriguez, who gravitates toward a monochrome palette. The airy, mostly white space is drenched in sunlight and has lots of character in the form of art and antiques. “I love black and white, so having a clean white space to start is great. Then, I like to contrast the modern feel with Old World objects, like my old sewing machine and typewriter. Being around things with a sense of history is inspiring to me,” he tells us.
He carries that sense of melding old and new into his collections, which feature fresh takes on classics and often embrace vintage fabrics and effortless masculine/feminine contrasts. Take his shirting pieces, which have become a signature—they tend to have an understated, clean aesthetic along with unexpected design nuances like atypical proportions and cutouts to make them special.
Another aspect that was important to Rodriguez was that the space feel artistic and creative rather than corporate. Rodriguez, who started sketching as a young boy, always knew he was artistically inclined. “Art has always come first for me,” he recalls. “I knew I had to be a creative and not someone who just sat in an office. I considered architecture, but I think fashion design had the perfect balance of creativity and technicality.”
For him and his small team, every day is a little different. “We work very closely, and I couldn’t possibly do what I do without them. I come in with different ideas every day, and they are able to execute them,” he explains of the collaborative work flow.
“This place feels like my very own little world, while at the same time also still connected with the rest of the world right outside the window,” he says proudly. “I love what I do. I don’t find it to be work—it’s a pleasure coming in every day and doing what I love. It’s happy here.” It certainly shows.