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Leona Edmiston Brings Old Hollywood Glamour To Every Girl

Looking for a dress recently proved to be incredibly frustrating. Whether the cut be all wrong for my frame, the fabric too heavy for Southern California’s balmy weather or the style just too trendy (or not trendy enough) to justify the price, dress shopping was just not at all fun or fruitful. That is until I stepped into Leona Edmiston at Sunset Plaza.

Once inside the doors, a wonderland of dresses opened up to me, each perfectly suited to my body shape – the shape of your average woman, hips and all.  A “real” woman’s body, not the body of 5’11” boy-shaped models, but that of a typical female. Not overweight or underweight, not too tall or too leggy, just me. It is in this dress oasis that I found just what I was looking for: a decidedly hot frock that is perfectly classic and ultimately just timeless. You can say I hit the jackpot.

“Leona Edmiston’s dresses are understatedly sexy,” said Kym Wilson, owner of the Australia-based designer’s flagship store and the outpost on Montana Avenue. “You look smoking hot, but you don’t look like you’re trying to hard.”

Each dress is made of fabrics that, although luxurious, are extremely wearable and durable, with jersey cotton being the standout – a style the designer refers to as “reality dressing.” Each piece is made to travel well and not require too much attention, while still looking completely fabulous and hanging beautifully on the body. Although fabrics such as silk absolutely factor into the line, it is the super soft jersey that I am drawn to.

Jersey cotton can make many “average” girls worry, as it is not the most forgiving of fabrics. But ladies I am here to tell you: Leona Edmiston knew what she was doing when she designed her collections. “The designs hide the curves you don’t like and makes the most of the ones you do,” said Wilson. It’s like magic – they really do. I slipped on number after number and was continually impressed with the attention to figure and proportion that Leona Edmiston is able to achieve.

“Normally there is a story with each different fabric that covers lots of different body shapes,” said Wilson. For her spring/summer 2009 line, patterns feature heavily, with alternate versions of the same fabric available to suit any taste from body conscious to conservative, hip to reserved. This further allows the wearer to inject individuality into each dress, straying far from cookie-cutter versions you may see elsewhere in Los Angeles. With a flip of accessories or a change of shoes, each dress morphs into something totally different and wholly unique despite the inherently “classic Hollywood” vibe the line emits.

“(Leona Edmiston) really nails it,” said Wilson. “The dresses have that feel of being reminiscent of the past but are really contemporary.” This point is very important to the line, it allows the dress to be worn this summer or in a summer 10 years from now – they don’t go out of style. The cuts are timeless and the shapes are carefully planned to be integrated into your wardrobe, maybe permanently.

Should you need to outfit yourself from head to toe, the Leona Edmiston boutique can accommodate with a full line the designer’s handbags and heels perfectly suited to each piece. The boutique also stocks essentials such as jewelry and the ever necessary under garments as well.

And as it turns out, I am not the only one to sing the praises of Leona Edmiston’s line. Stars such as Drew Barrymore, Kristin Davis, Elle MacPherson and The Hills’ Audrina Patridge (who also posed the a to-die-for low-cut, ruffled “Lucy” wrap dress in L.A Direct magazine) are fans. Said Wilson: “Once people discover this label, they tend to get hooked on it.”

Visit Wilson at the Sunset Plaza location, 8591 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, or call 310-855-9121. Check out the label online at

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