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Los Angeles Haunt Couture – Call for Sponsors!


October 25th, 7:30 – 10pm
Avalon Hollywood | 1735 Vine St, Los Angeles, CA 90028

We are ramping up for this year’s IIDA LA Haunt Couture and are thrilled with the Professional and Student Teams participating this year! If you’re interested in sponsoring a team or the event to help make this spectacular night happen, check out our Sponsorship Opportunities page here.

Details are included in our Sponsorship Package here. Professional and Student Team Sponsors are filling up quickly and need to be finalized by Aug. 22nd. Hope to hear from you soon!

Not interested in sponsoring a team? Other sponsorships available!

Mary Beth Caccitolo
BuzziSpace Business Development Associate

Well Building CEU + Design Tours | Aventine + JLL


Thank you to everyone who came out for last week’s Well Building CEU + Project Tour! The tour featured the Aventine lobby, a 2018 Calibre Award Winner and JLL San Diego’s new office space. 


A special thank you to Aventine and JLL for allowing us to experience these beautiful spaces!


Following the tour was an informative CEU presentation that focused on Well Building – the framework for this innovative and extremely relevant standard encompasses seven concepts of wellness: air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind, that can make a tremendous difference to employee health and wellbeing.

Los Angeles Haunt Couture

Basic RGB

October 25th, 7:30 – 10pm
Avalon Hollywood | 1735 Vine St, Los Angeles, CA 90028

We are so excited for this year’s Haunt Couture theme we can’t keep it to ourselves! Want a sneak peek? Visit our Instagram page here for clues that will keep you guessing up until the Reveal Party on Wednesday, August 29th!

Looking to help make the magic happen by becoming a team or event sponsor? Click here for more info!

You don’t want to miss this spectacular evening that fuses fashion, fun and design. Tickets go on sale soon so save the date!

Visit the event page here for up to date information.

Mary Beth Caccitolo
BuzziSpace Business Development Associate

Leaders Breakfast Honoree: Pussyhat Project Co-founder Jayna Zweiman

IIDA Southern California Chapter Leaders Breakfast committee is excited to present this year’s honoree, Pussyhat Project co-founder, Jayna Zweiman. This global women’s movement appeared nearly overnight, with millions of women, men and children gathering across 600 rallies internationally to sport their hand-made knitted caps.


Photo Credit: Pussyhatproject.com

Created locally in our Los Angeles community, the iconic pink hats represent solidarity for women’s rights and were created by Jayna Zweiman, an artist and design architect, along with and Krista Suh, a screenwriter . In a recent interview with Teen Vogue, Jayna describes that the Pussyhat Project has two parts: “1. Creating a sea of pink hats at the Women’s March to make a bold and powerful statement of solidarity, and 2. Giving people who will not be able to march — whether for medical, financial, scheduling reasons — visibility, and a way to support the marchers and women’s rights.” Our Leaders Breakfast committee hopes to instill inspiration from Jayna’s personal social justice journey.


Photo Credit: Pussyhatproject.com

Jayna’s most recent project, known as the Welcome Blanket, goal is to connect people already living in the United States with new immigrants through the art of storytelling and handcrafted blankets. Along with a handmade blanket, new immigrants are greeted with a proposition manifesto from the group: “Welcome to the United States and your new life here! We are so glad you have arrived”. The project aims to provide positive, hands on approach to communicate how immigration policies can affect all of our lives.

WB-jayna-portrait copy

IIDA Southern California is proud to present Social Justice as the theme of this year’s Leaders Breakfast. This year’s honoree, Jayna Zweiman, will be sharing her experiences and basis for how a background in architecture led to her passion programs, Pussyhat Project and The Welcome Blanket. Keynote speaking this year’s event will be Black Panther costume designer, Ruth Carter, who will share her journey transcending through the fashion design industry.  IIDA SoCal extends the invitation to attend our Leaders Breakfast 2018 event to our entire community.

Thursday, September 13th, 2018, 7-10am
InterContinetal Los Angeles Downtown
900 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90017

Click here to purchase tickets and become an event sponsor today. For more information about the event, visit the event page here.

Black Panther Costume Designer as Leaders Breakfast Keynote Speaker

IIDA Southern California Chapter Leaders Breakfast committee is honored to present this year’s keynote speaker, Oscar- nominated costume designer, Ruth Carter. She has been most recently recognized for her work on Marvel’s latest blockbuster, Black Panther. Ruth has an impressive more than 40 films under her belt, earning Academy Award nominations in Best Costume Design for her work on Malcom X (1992) and Amistad (1997). Numerous times she has collaborated with Spike Lee.


During a recent interview with FastCompany, Ruth discusses her ideation around the costumes, stating that she wanted the costumes to not portray typical superheroes; “We didn’t want them to be these sexy girls walking around with a guy in a bulletproof catsuit. We wanted them to be serious fighters”. Furthermore, Ruth goes on to describe where her iconic costume design originating, largely from the east African tribe known as the Maasai. The color red was important symbolism: ”This brilliant red is a consistent color in Africa. So I upped the ante on the tone… I wanted it to be almost like an intimidating red, just intense and saturated”.

Photo Credit: Marvel Studios / Walt Disney Pictures
Photo Credit: Marvel Studios / Walt Disney Pictures

IIDA Southern California is proud to present Social Justice as the theme of this year’s Leaders Breakfast. Ruth Carter will share her experience behind the masterpieces and share her personal journey transcending through the fashion design industry. Additionally, program will feature honoree Jayna Zweiman, co-creator and mastermind behind The Pussyhat Project, a global women’s movement which has reached over 600 rallies across multiple continents. Jayna will be speaking about her newest passion project, the Welcome Blanket, a crowd-sourced action which invites participants to knit, crochet and sew blankets for new immigrants seeking resettlement. IIDA SoCal extends the invitation to attend our Leaders Breakfast 2018 event to our entire community.

Thursday, September 13th, 2018, 7-10am
InterContinetal Los Angeles Downtown
900 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90017

Click here to purchase tickets and become an event sponsor today. For more information about the event, visit the event page here.

Orange County’s Icons of Rock


Orange County’s 2018 Haute Couture Fashion Show electrified the night with an ‘Icons of Rock’ theme, stage, and musical setting. The show struck a chord this year, one who’s harmonic tendrils reverberated far past the Orange County lines, touching the sweet ears of our Long Beach and Inland Empire neighbors. Fifteen participants from each of these three areas came together to choose an icon and battle it out on stage in a show of timeless fashion. Each set was uniquely mind-blowing but, as always, there can only be a few winners.

Here are the photos and video from the event.

Our Award-Winning Icons…


Student Team featuring Aretha Franklin: idi, sponsored by Lotte Advanced Materials


Third Place featuring Freddie Mercury: H Hendy & Associates, sponsored by Steelcase + Coalesse


Second Place featuring Michael Jackson: Robert Borders & Associates, sponsored by Patcraft + Prudential Lighting


First Place featuring Elton John: Little Diversified Architecture, sponsored by Pivot

A guitar-smashing THANK YOU to all coordinators, event sponsors, team sponsors, fabric sponsors, participants and attendees – you were a major piece in this production of a lifetime. We had over 400 screaming fans in attendance for this year’s show. Special thanks to the committee leaders: Anne Murrell, Chidimma Abuka, Kerry Menhaji, Lauren Thompson, Margot De Ramirez, Mary D’Avila, Whitney Hrubik, Sue Ewing, Tricia Mauller, and our co-chairs Bobby Trujillo, Erin Nulph and Taylor Montgomery.

We hope you enjoyed the show and the live-band, Satisfaction, that played this year! 

Thanks again to all who worked on, supported and attended OC’s Fashion Show this year – we will return to the stage in 2019 with a new theme and more fun!

Turning Point Moment- David Fridlund


What do drums, office assistants & Hong Kong have in common?

They tell a great story of Turning Point Moments in David Fridlund’s path of development. David has over 40 years of experience in the design and architecture profession with multiple client types throughout the US and internationally. Please join us in welcoming David as President of our chapter in July!

Growing up in rural Wisconsin, Dave found himself aspiring to be a professional drummer in high school. Conventional wisdom told him to find another career instead of setting himself up for a long road of a starving artist. Since Architecture has been called “frozen music”, he decided to go to architecture school and pursue a more “sensible” degree in architecture at Arizona State University. Little did he know upon graduation, he was faced with one of the biggest recessions.

As a fresh graduate in 1976, after selling his 1964 Ford Mustang convertible to pay the rent, in desperation he took a job as an office assistant- filing, mailing packages, and running prints at a tiny firm that few people know about… Gensler. In hindsight, he says it’s the best starting position in the company, because “you really get to know everyone in the firm and when the right time comes, you know who you want to work with.” After 6 months, David transitioned to the boards at Gensler. While he left his office assistant responsibilities behind, he took away a foundational lesson in business that continues to open doors in his career today- Building a good relationship is a two-way street. Know what you can do to help others, even before they sense a need.

Once David moved onto the design side, he was like a fish in water and quickly given career advancement and project opportunities such as Korn Ferry Int’l in San Francisco, BankAmerica Int’l, Lowe’s Lincoln Square, New York and Sony Pictures Entertainment, Culver City to name a few. His work took him across the US in multiple offices. He dedicated himself to building a diverse project portfolio, and a thriving office culture of openness and mentoring to the younger staff in different office locations. He was working so much that he finally decided to take a vacation from work in Hong Kong- which would alter the rest of his life shortly after.

Can you guess it?! Hint, it’s a good thing that most of us looks for in life. :-)

He fell in love.

Despite of what conventional wisdom tells us about falling in love overseas, this experience awakens a deep recognition that there is so much more in life than work. He chose to leave everything he’s built in the US to follow his heart, relocating to Hong Kong to start a new office there and work with clients throughout Southeast Asia, which ultimately led him back to the US.

When I asked his about what he would say to his younger self, he smiled and says, “Embrace diversity and embrace change on your path. Don’t hesitate to jump off the cliff when your heart tells you to jump. And, yes, keep playing the drums!”

Christina Huang
Vice President of Professional Development IIDA SoCal Chapter
Allsteel Architect + Design Manager Los Angeles

IIDA LA Leaders Breakfast Cues to Culture

Interior Design magazine featured an article about our upcoming Leaders Breakfast event. Click here for the full post on their website.


The annual IIDA LA Leaders Breakfast is upping its game with ties to culture. Make that the cinema and general zeitgeist given this year’s keynote speaker and honoree. The former is twice Oscar-nominated costume designer Ruth E. Carter (pictured).

Her most recent work in the blockbuster Black Panther plays a vital role establishing the film’s characters and its cinematic universe. Rerun SelmaThe Butler, and Malcolm X for more looks at her intricate craft.


This year saw a unique phenomenon with the Pussyhat Project. Those pink knit caps, on women and men alike, crowded the streets of New York; Washington, DC; Los Angeles; and cities spanning the continents in more than 600 political rallies in a single day. Credit their creator, Jayna Zweiman. Who knew? The knitter was a trained architect. When an injury left her unable to work or exercise, she needed to find a hobby during rehab time. Enter her screenwriter friend Krista Suh and the Little Knittery a local LA yarn store where they learned to knit and crochet. Knitting circle talk turned to politics and women’s issues. The upcoming January Women’s March in the nation’s capital mandated warm headgear. Voila, a symbol and movement were born.

Learn more from these stellar women firsthand on September 13 at the InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown, aka the Wilshire Grand. Purchase your tickets here.

Edie Cohen
Interior Design

Turning Point Moment – Dan Stover


“I hit rock bottom when I was in college. I lost my will to live” Dan shared candidly when I ask him about a significant turning point moment that influence his professional development. In hindsight, he is able to see now the biggest blind spot that eventually caused him to hit rock bottom was the lack of self- awareness in his own feelings and thoughts, which eventually lead to a perpetual buildup of depression.

In the workplace, something similar could be taking place, as Dan explains “when we are not aware of what we are thinking and feeling on the inside, or, when we are unaware to how we are reacting to people, deadlines, customers or projects in the workplace. The internal reactions are actually energy that typically has nowhere to go but stuffed down. The reason we don’t allow those emotions to surface is because many of us were never thought how to be authentically expressive with our emotions in a way that will not get us fired. So most people decided it’s better to stuff feelings and thoughts down, because the risk of being authentic is too high. It’s actually a learnable leadership skill to use both negative and positive emotions productively in conversation at work. The alternative to authentically expressing our emotions is we end up walking around as pressure cookers or we become physically sick.”

Dan’s early 20’s experience is not unique- 16 million adults in the US and 350 million worldwide suffer from depression. His 2nd turning point moment is a simple but powerful decision he made after he lost his will to live: he decided to ask for help.

Dan entered in a group therapy program available at the local hospital, where he received the help he needed, and a tremendous awakening of the power of vulnerability- that creates remarkable connection and deep relationships. When he finished his treatment, he felt a deep desire to pay it forward by volunteering on the suicide hot line to help others who may share similar struggles.


Today Dan earns his living as an executive consultant who coaches leaders and CEOs on emotional intelligence and organizational strategy.

IIDA SoCal is thrilled to have Dan as facilitator at Turning Point Series Summer Workshop in June in all four city centers on Assertive Communication. Here is a 5 min talk Dan gave called Brain of a Leader.

Christina Huang
IIDA SoCal VP of Professional Development
Allsteel Architecture + Design Manager