Business—and Some Lines of Customers—Return To Fairfax Avenue
Commerce came to a halt on Fairfax Avenue, one of Los Angeles’ popular retail streets, on May 30.Looters took advantage of the opportunity to commit crimes during peaceful George Floyd protests. They broke into the thoroughfare’s high-end streetwear shops and sneaker emporiums to steal products and vandalize the stores.
The great majority of the shops on the street remain boarded up with plywood. However some life returned to the street June 13 and 14 when apparel brand Ripndip produced a pop-up shop, humorously called the Ripndip Toilet Paper Pop-up. The brand's limited edition collection of tees, hoodies and yes, Ripndip toilet paper, satirized COVID-19 culture and the hoarding of toilet paper during the first weeks of the pandemic.
During the run of the pop-up, long lines of Ripndip fans, many wearing the brand’s face masks, queued up from the pop-up on 433 N. Fairfax Ave., past the landmark Canter’s Delicatessen and down the block to Oakwood Avenue, all for to get an opportunity to pick up exclusive Ripndip gear.
The wait to get into the pop-up was more than an hour, said Michael Lacerte, a Ripndip fan who drove more than 26 miles from Fullerton, Calif., to go to the pop-up. Lines were long because there was a lot of people and because the store had to limit the number of people in the pop-up because of COVID-19 rules.
Lacerte said that he comfortable with venturing out because danger from the unrest had passed. There also was the matter of shaking off some pandemic blues. “It’s nice to get out,” Lacerte said. “I’ve only been out a few times in the past few months.”