On December 7, SoCal style met Asia with the boutique, BESTDRESSEDMONK. Allen and Kira Gold’s store opening even turned out actor Billy Baldwin wearing their boutique’s designs! With a promise of environmentally smart elegance, Allen Gold has a great new fashion genre in his hands.
How did Buddhism play a role in your designs?
The name BESTDRESSEDMONK arose from my seven month retreat at a Tibetan Buddhist hermitage in Scotland. I think the simplicity of the life there certainly influenced my vision for the type of clothes I wanted to wear and that I felt the culture was ready for.
Do you believe in using clothing for good luck? Aka. Feng Shui?
I believe that clothing can change my state, give me more confidence, add to my charisma. If one believes that it can bring good luck, the that is certainly available. I personally do not associate luck with clothing. I am not so superstitious. The principles of Feng Shui are about energetic balance. Although I am not a student or practitioner of this craft, I can imagine that an adept person could apply it to clothing, but I have never heard of anybody doing it.
Billy Baldwin made an appearance at the opening
What types of men would you love to see wearing the clothing?
All types of men can wear these styles. Of course, I would like to see stuffy financial and legal types loosen up and adopt some of this styling. Generally, more creative men, alternative men, men who live values centered lives will adopt this line.
How is comfort part of the collection?
It is a principal value. All of our clothes must be comfortable. In fact, sensuality is a large part of the purpose of the collection. It’s hard to feel sensual if you are wearing something uncomfortable.
Before your time in Asia, did you ever want to start a fashion line?
I never lived in Asia, although I have visited it. I started my business career over 40 years ago as a fashion publicist in London. Fashion is in my DNA. There were certainly some Asian influences in the collection, although our goal is to be the first truly cross cultural clothing line.
What types of compliments do you receive on your own clothing from strangers?
We are getting a 95 percent approval rating from men and women. People seem to find the clothing and the shopping environment quite beautiful, made in a high quality way with gorgeous fabrics.