Model Mayhem #:
Last Activity:
Mar 21, 2017
Very Experienced
Depends on Assignment
May 20, 2011

About Me

Tough Luv - effortless attitude, made in the USA

The Tough Luv muse and mindset is always a large part of designer Elaine Lai’s vision for the brand. Though not any one specific person, when asked to describe her, Elaine knows exactly who she is. “Her taste is not mainstream. She likes music on the cutting edge and style the same way. She enjoys live bands and gallery openings, fine dining and vintage shopping. She wears boots with her dresses and heels with her favorite tee. She is not trendy. She is headstrong and unique. She appreciates romantic notions but understands Tough Luv.”

Elaine created the Tough Luv brand after attending OTIS College of Art and Design and working for several well-know fashion brands in the Los Angeles fashion industry. It was through her work experience that Elaine fell in love with the process of garment dying and the endless possibilities that could be achieved when subjecting finished garments to hand treatments and dyes. Combined with an eye for fine details, and a passion for music and art, the groundwork for the brand was laid.

Today, husband and wife team, Elaine and Jaroslav, have taken Tough Luv to the next level. With distribution in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and New York, Tough Luv is proudly made in the USA, and is sold in over two hundred boutiques and specialty stores nationwide. Together they transform staple fabrics like American-made cotton french terries and tee-shirt jerseys into fashion forward designs without sacrificing wearability, comfort, or detailing. The duo seamlessly blends edgy street looks with feminine touches, resulting in a line that is cool, flirty, and fun.

Our Designer:

Elaine Lai comes from a family who’s history is a melting pot of culture and inspiration. Her parents immigrated to America from Hong Kong and brought with them a passion for designing and sewing their own clothing, while her maternal grandmother came to the United States in the 1940’s from Scotland. It is this combination of cultures that defines Elaine as a designer, fusing old world European traditions with the functionality that fast-paced, technology-driven, metropolitan life demands.

After receiving an degree in graphic design, Elaine attended OTIS College of Art and Design in Los Angeles where she studied fashion design. Furthermore, she received a Certificate of Completion from the famed London based Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in Experimental Fashion. Since then, Elaine has worked for several well-know fashion brands, among them, AG Adriano Goldschmied, Splendid, and Ella Moss. Through her extensive work experience, Elaine has evolved into a well-rounded designer that takes pride, and specializes in American-made fashion, a passion that she applies when designing for her own label, Tough Luv Clothing, season after season.

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