Uninspired by a career in finance, Anne Deane decided to put her Duke diploma to work and wrote up a business plan for a fashion brand. She enlisted her pal Jacob Park, a stylist at the time, to help on the design front, and Öhlin/D was born. (The name is a nod to an Aztec word that means “movement.”) Everything’s subtly fancy—like a boxy bag dress in blue raw silk or a pencil skirt in shiny gold lurex.
What Deane lacks in industry experience, she makes up for in pure ambition—and with the help of Park, who’s been sewing since he was a teen. Before launching Öhlin/D, he worked for Hayley Starr and Maiyet's Kristy Caylor. “At the time, they were collaborating on Hayley's LA-based womenswear brand. I learned so much from them, everything from basic design techniques to very advanced draping,” he says. “It was also incredibly valuable watching someone take their dream and work their ass off trying to actualize it into a real company.” —Casey Lewis