Vintage Looks from Lola Paige

Growing up, we all have childhood dreams that we wholeheartedly believe will one day be our destiny. In college, we decide to “be realistic” and choose professions that benefit our wallets instead of our hearts.

We ditch our lengthy list of fantasy jobs and settle on a sensible pursuit — one that, at best, contains a twisted and tamed version of our past plans. But then there are those like Laura Diaz and Thien Crisanto who never let their dreams escape them. Both recent graduates of the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, these two 21-year-old ladies are the minds behind the up-and-coming fashion line Lola Paige. Lola Paige is a brand that features vintage-inspired swimsuit cover-ups that Californian girls can also wear to hit the town. Diaz and Crisanto were both born and raised in the O.C., and both adore the beach. Their goal with Lola Paige is to provide outfits that a “beach-loving girl can spend all day in without sacrificing her personal style.” Both Diaz and Crisanto grew up with a definite passion for fashion (Crisanto sewed her first pair of pants at the age of eight). Nevertheless, they proceeded to look elsewhere for a profession; Crisanto planned on writing and studying history and Diaz wanted to pursue psychology or social work.

In the end, Diaz and Crisanto decided to follow their hearts to FIDM, where Diaz majored in Marketing and Crisanto in Merchandiser Product Development. Thanks to Tom and Helen Lo, the couple that owns California Apparel Service which hosts Lola Paige, Diaz and Crisanto have been able to apply what they’ve learned in school to a real-life project. Their personal styles – Crisanto considers herself “grandma chic” – and tendencies – Diaz remembers to stay business minded thanks to her major – conjoin well under Lola Paige.

Although life may seem like a fairytale for Crisanto and Diaz, they have struggled with launching a clothing line, especially in the current economy. As Diaz puts it, “The fashion line is not the glamorous stereotype it is made out to be.” Right now, they are searching for boutiques willing to sell their clothes and are trying to launch their online store. In addition, both girls have to balance a heavy work schedule with the rest of their lives, which can take a toll on their personal relationships and sleep schedules.

Even so, Diaz and Crisanto have found developing and working for Lola Paige to be a rewarding, eye-opening experience. The Los have also enjoyed seeing the progress the girls have made. With Lola Paige, Crisanto and Diaz are trying to show the world that they have something innovative to offer and that they have a specific niche in which they can enter. Their line was launched in September, and will be for sale on shortly. They also have a fashion blog at where they hope to build a community of like-minded fashionistas. Diaz and Crisanto have a long, but hopefully fulfilling, road ahead of them, and their story offers a formula for pursuing one’s dreams.

Diaz and Crisanto went beyond the classroom and stretched themselves by finding important business connections. They have found their market, and infuse their personalities and interests into their line. They’ve taken different routes within the same realm of fashion, but never hesitate to dabble in other areas of their interests. They are pragmatic, but most importantly, they never let those childhood dreams, fantasy lists or “unrealistic” notions collect dust in the deep crevices of their hearts.