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The Albright Fashion Library Gets a New Home in Los Angeles

The Albright Fashion Library Gets a New Home in Los Angeles
The Albright Fashion Library Gets a New Home in Los Angeles

 


There are bulging closets all over Hollywood, but Irene Albright's is bigger. Thirty-four years ago, the OG stylist and fashion archivist founded her Albright Fashion Library in New York, now with 20,000 real fashion finds to rent. “When I first opened the New York showroom, most of the men's clothing American Psycho came – I had all this Armani! says Albright, who began building his collection early in his career by buying leftovers from photo shoots.

After opening a small showroom in Beverly Hills a decade ago, she moved the Albright Fasion Library LA to luxurious new digs in Trousdale Estates in Los Angeles. The house functions as a mega-closet, offering 7,000 pieces of designer evening wear, couture dresses, jewelry, shoes (25 racks) and evening bags, both new and archival, ready for rental, as well as a full photo studio for celebrity photoshoots and commercials. .

Sydney Sweeney attends the 2022 HBO Emmy Party at San Vicente Bungalows on September 12, 2022 in West Hollywood, California.

David Livingston/Getty Images

“We get stylists and costume designers here,” she says. “But lately, celebrities are coming straight in.” We are our own stylists: we dress you from head to toe for everything, with almost any designer. Your filming can be done here. Clothes from her collection have been worn by everyone from Beyoncé and Lady Gaga to Selena Gomez and Anne Hathaway. For the 2022 HBO Emmy after-party, Sydney Sweeney wore a green Versace dress with Albright cutouts, while Lindsay Lohan stunned in a library floor-length vintage Galliano this spring at Irish wish premiere in New York.

Albright Fashion Library Instagram And website preview the goodies, but visiting the Trousdale spot by appointment only is a fashion fantasy of Kardashian-meets-Imelda Marcos proportions.

Why need such generosity in one of the most expensive neighborhoods in Los Angeles (home to Jeffrey Katzenberg, Leonardo DiCaprio and Elton John, among others)?

“It's what people expect when they come in to get their hair done,” says Albright, who began her career as a stylist during fashion's heyday in the 1980s. Although 90 percent of the house is a showroom, there is also a large kitchen, an outdoor pool with an epic view and table, and a modern and chic living and dining room that she will use for meetings and business. The house, its entrance, its pool, its views, its architecture, seems straight out of a Julius Shulman architecture photo from the 1960s. The only thing missing is the women with teased and sprayed bubble cups .

Albright LA ​​Fashion Library

Courtesy of Albright Fashion Library

“In New York, we cater primarily to the advertising world: fashion for commercials and print ads. We have stylists and costume designers here in Los Angeles,” says Albright. “But what's weird now is that a lot of celebrities come directly. I think it's because a lot of stylists get paid to dress them with certain designers. Some have complained that it's not in their best interest; you can see that it could happen. But they still have a great need to have a new look at any time. If you want new things, I'm there, like in a multi-brand store.

Lindsay Lohan attends the Irish Wish New York premiere at Paris Theater on March 5, 2024 in New York.

Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Netflix

Albright and her daughter do all their shopping from luxury brands – mostly in Paris, right after the shows. Customers find both the newest looks and many special archive pieces, which are currently trending on the red carpet. After opening the New York archives in 1990, there is an incredible stock. Some of the first pieces were ones Albright asked to buy after fashion photo shoots during her early days as a stylist.

There's also a veritable art collection hanging on the walls of the Los Angeles home: Albright studied art and also pursued a career as a gallery owner for years. “I opened Mina Gallery in New York in 2009, we maintained it until 2015, right next to our showroom on Cooper Square,” she says. “We replaced portrait painters Monica Serra and Sam Bassett. I have always loved art, especially portraiture, as much as fashion. Among her favorites on Trousdale's walls: the works of Los Angeles artist Liz Markus: “What she did was study the photos of Truman Capote's swans, of the great women of society era, each of them a superb painting of them, truly wonderful. »

Albright often spends six months a year in Los Angeles (she usually summers in Southampton), but that doesn't mean she's become confident behind the wheel. For a recent dinner, she drove to the Chateau Marmont, nervous, wishing she hadn't. “I feel like I can drive to Southampton, it’s easy. Here I only take secondary roads. I'm not going to Sunset. I literally drive to our house avoiding Sunset. I much prefer Uber or my driving partner.

Albright LA ​​Fashion Library

Courtesy of Albright Fashion Library

Planning the Trousdale Archives may seem like it took a year – but it didn’t. “Our owner of the old archives house announced that they were selling it on April 1,” Albright laughs. “I found this house that day, the first one I visited. We moved last weekend! All! Friday evening and Monday morning, we were already overwhelmed with appointments. We are on a mountain with a magnificent view. Many stylists bring their celebrities. And guess what?” she laughs. “There are so many hard-to-please celebrities. I don't blame them. On the red carpet, they need to feel good. Now they get so much attention from social media – GOOD And bad – they need to feel as safe as possible.

Even in Los Angeles, years of New York adrenaline still fuel him: Albright doesn't slow down anywhere. She speaks as fast as she moves: at the speed of sound in New York. “I can not stop!” she admits. “I don’t know how to stop. Meanwhile, I have all these clothes and I barely go out! I'm always working. I rarely go to black tie parties. But if I had to, well…I can certainly dress the part!

A version of this story first appeared in the June 12 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.

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