Christen’s company—Leslie Christen | LifeStyling—is as hot as Dittos Jeans in 1977. She served as the personal stylist and shopper for Heather Dubrow from The Real Housewives of Orange County, is the exclusive stylist and personal shopping expert for The St. Regis Monarch Beach, holds seminars (among them: Shop Your Shape and Mommy Makeover) and chairs a Dec. 7 fashion show to benefit CASA, which provides advocacy and a voice for foster children.
“My passion for what I do is just something innate,” says Christen, who is 34 years old and married. “It is all of me. I love touching clothes, imagining what an outfit will look like on a client—I have an eternal paper doll collection in my head—reading about fashion, being totally immersed in it.”
While studying at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Christen was hired by a friend to do some wardrobe work in feature films, and she started marketing herself as a stylist. She eventually launched her company in 2001. Perhaps her gutsiest business decision was to move her firm in 2005 from Los Angeles to Orange County, where she grew up.
“I actually had to start all over here,” Christen says. “At first, people all looked at me like I was crazy—like, ‘What do you do?’ It’s been a long road, but O.C. is fast becoming a mecca for style, and I am grateful that I was here at the birth of it.”
Laguna Beach’s Leslie Christen is the dalai lama of the local fashion world, offering pearls of wisdom to all who seek answers. Sit at her knee (or stand in front of your closet with her), and you’ll hear proverbs such as: “Style is partly an expression of one’s identity. You can’t have style until you articulate a self.” Or, “Don’t be afraid of size/number, it doesn’t matter! ... Sizing is not regulated, so it’s not truly your size anyway.”
Navy blue instead of black, charity work, Shaw’s Cove, Laguna Beach, boutique shoppin
Age-inappropriate clothing, ascots, white stilettos, wire hangers
by William Lobdell | Riviera Orange County magazine | July 5, 2012