Ashton Michael

by Eleni Solomou

The Bow-Tie Stays
Ashton Michael is the fashion designer who shut down the streets of Hollywood to put on an anti-fashion week show; who created a collection inspired by cholos and Hasidic Jews; and who knows how to work a piece of leather. He’s also the designer behind the stage costumes of will.i.am, Cher, and Usher. Arguably, he’s changed Los Angeles fashion week forever, setting the bar where every bar is supposed to be: very, very high. He’s also pretty damn funny.

What are your goals for your next fashion show? We’re going to do it bigger next year. We’re going to do our own production for Fashion Week. We have a co-op here that’s called the House of Infinite Radness. We started off as one group and four designers and now, all under one roof on this block, we each have our own stores.

What do you think L.A. designers have to offer that’s different from other city-based designers? What’s interesting now is that the L.A. street culture has become worldwide, almost glorified. You look at Japan—everyone wants to be [a] Mexican, low-rider gangster. We’re in L.A. and everyone thinks all we do is make T-shirts and baggy jeans. Right now is [the] time to break that down and say, “[In] high-fashion [it] doesn’t matter where you’re coming from. It matters what you’re doing.”

What do you wear when no one’s watching? Nothing.

I was afraid you’d say that. I hate wearing clothes, truthfully…If I could be naked all day, I would be so happy.

Well, this [next] question is fun. Tell me something no one knows about you. Oh, man. Oh, fuck. This is not a fun question. That’s bad.

It’s fun for us.  Oh my God. I don’t know.

Do you love eating things in bed? I love things in bed.

Eating things in bed. Oh, eating things in bed? Are we going sexual? Because I can get real nasty.

We can if you want to. We can get really nasty. Oh, no. I don’t want to attract that crowd.

Are you sure you don’t want to? …Well, maybe. Oh my God. This is actually really hard.

Do you pee in the shower? Yeah. Doesn’t everyone pee in the shower?

You’d be surprised. Most people claim that they don’t if you ask them. No, I love peeing in the shower. I think it’s genius.

Do you cry when you listen to the Red Hot Chili Peppers? Oh my God. I do cry, I do cry every time I hear fucking Stevie Nicks in “Landslide.”

 I know so much about you now. I know, it’s like we were on a date.