Roald Dahl's Design-Minded Granddaughter Sets Up Shop in L.A.

Phoebe Dahl - P 2014
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Phoebe Dahl - P 2014

Phoebe Dahl's Faircloth & Supply line makes its brick-and-mortar debut in Silver Lake

It’s been 50 years since late literary genius Roald Dahl first captivated readers with his classic Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and lately, his progeny has also been garnering attention. Granddaughter and designer Phoebe Dahl, the creative talent behind the charitable clothing line Faircloth & Supply, has been turning heads with her first pop-up, which ends its run in Los Angeles this weekend. Her oversized dresses (priced between $150 to $300) and tops ($150 to $275) not only make a fashion statement, but a philanthropic one, too. For every item sold, Dahl donates a school uniform to a girl in Nepal through Santa Monica non-profit Go Campaign.

L.A. native Dahl credits her love affair with fabrics, especially linens, to her grandmother, who owned an antique fabric store in Santa Fe, New Mexico. “We would sit together in her shop and she would educate me on fabrics,” she says. “She had beautiful shawls and nightgowns. I was absolutely in awe of them.”  By age 15, Dahl had taken up sewing as a serious hobby, and soon found herself studying fashion at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising in San Francisco, then the London College of Fashion in England.

But it wasn’t till she traveled to Asia as an assistant to an Amsterdam-based fashion designer that Dahl was moved to launch her own line. In Tokyo, Dahl fell in love with Japanese street-wear aesthetic of flowy linen dresses, paired with espadrilles and ripped Levis, while time spent in India — her first time visiting an underdeveloped country — left a lasting impression on the philanthropically-minded young designer.

“I’ve always been into women’s economic empowerment, and knew that was what I wanted to focus on,” says Dahl, who quit her job upon her return and launched Faircloth & Supply and its one-for-one model a year-and-a-half later, in 2013. “In parts of Asia, girls cannot go to school without a uniform.” This fall, immediately after returning from her annual pilgrimage to London to celebrate Roald Dahl Day with her family, Dahl opened her first pop-up in Los Angeles in Silver Lake, where she lives with fiancée, Aussie model Ruby Rose.

Here, fans have a chance to interact with the organic line, including her bestselling wrap dress and button-up shirts. Dahl also offers to custom-dye pieces for clients, who may want a piece from her summer collection in a more fall-appropriate color. Ultimately, Dahl hopes to open a small, permanent storefront in the neighborhood, but for now, her greatest satisfaction from the design process. “I love watching things come together from two-dimensional flat pieces into 3D pieces. Every time I sew something, just putting on that final stitch is so exciting.”

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