Skip to main content

Achieve the Indie Aesthetic with These California Brands

Achieve the Indie Aesthetic with These California Brands

If you’re having trouble putting an indie outfit together on your own, scroll down to find some of the cutest brands to get inspired.


4 min read

November 13, 2021

Fashion trends these days encompass a wide array of aesthetics, making it a challenge to keep up. From soft girls to baddies, from cottagecore to gorpcore gals, and even angelcore, the options seem endless. However, amidst this diversity, the indie aesthetic stands out as a mainstream favorite, ironically enough. Fueled by the influence of platforms like TikTok, indie vibes are characterized by a mix of elements such as baby tees, oversized cardigans, sweatshirts, lace camisoles, chunky shoes, bright-colored mini skirts, and baggy denim— with a notable emphasis on the latter. Unlike the indie rock aesthetic, which often flaunts logos and brand names, indie fashion leans towards eclectic, nostalgia-inspired pieces that exude a thrift store charm. If piecing together an indie outfit feels daunting, fear not. Below, we've curated a selection of California-based brands to spark your inspiration and help you achieve that effortlessly cool indie look.

The indie aesthetic is based on individuality and independence. The aesthetic became popular thanks to TikTok and centers around bright colors.

Abacus Row 

For those seeking to master the indie aesthetic, look no further than Abacus Row. Nestled in San Francisco, this brand offers finely crafted jewelry that adds the perfect flourish to your ensemble, effortlessly aligning with the indie ethos. Every piece from Abacus Row boasts meticulous craftsmanship and thoughtful details, offering a subtle yet stylish take on beadwork that resonates with contemporary sensibilities. Add a touch of au courant flair to your look with Abacus Row's exquisite jewelry.

Recomended businesses

Show me
Recommended Businesses near

Discover the best of California. Our recommended businesses are top-quality and are committed to their communities.

Los Angeles Apparel

Los Angeles Apparel epitomizes the fusion of eco-consciousness and alternative-indie aesthetics. Rooted in a commitment to sustainability, this brand seamlessly blends these two priorities—a testament to the indie spirit, which inherently embraces a touch of contrarianism. With a steadfast focus on sustainability and operational efficiency, Los Angeles Apparel sources textile and yarn products from within the United States, championing domestic manufacturing. By prioritizing local production, the brand not only caters to the needs of its customers but also supports the health of the domestic and continental manufacturing landscape, while simultaneously reducing its carbon footprint for the betterment of the environment.

This resurgence differs from the original indie style, which didn't include bright colors and was considered more "alternative" by today's standards.

Alchemy Works 

Elevating the retro indie aesthetic to new heights, Alchemy Works stands as a beacon of coastal California culture. With prime locations in L.A.'s Art District and Newport Beach's Lido Marina, this versatile brand offers an eclectic range of clothing and home decor items. From renowned names like Modern Weaving and Cult Gaia to the exquisite craftsmanship of Gabriela Artigas, Alchemy Works curates pieces that exude quality and timeless appeal.


Based in Santa Monica, Altaire is an independent accessories label renowned for its unique creations that effortlessly blend functionality with style. Crafted locally, their collection of geometrically-inspired bags and pouches reflects a harmonious fusion of contemporary and classic aesthetics. Drawing inspiration from nature, architecture, and travel, Altaire surprises with unexpected textures, intricate details, and captivating color palettes, adding an unexpected twist to your indie aesthetic.

The indie aesthetic was, in many ways, similar to the pastel aesthetic; however, the color is paler and even less intense.

Santa Venetia Goods

Inspired by a serendipitous encounter with a pair of clogs at a wedding, the founders of Santa Venetia Goods, Raquel and Gemma, embarked on a mission to infuse their beloved style with a modern, Californian flair. Fueled by their shared passion for vintage aesthetics and expertise in cobbling, they birthed Santa Venetia Goods—a collection of uniquely crafted, aesthetically captivating handmade shoes perfectly suited for the soft indie vibe.


Founded in 2014 by designer and pattern-genius Danielle Colen, Waltz embodies a philosophy of simplicity and sustainability in the face of today's fast-paced, trend-driven fashion industry. Recognizing the need to declutter and focus on essentials, Colen's creations at Waltz are timeless staples designed to streamline women's wardrobes. Beyond their classic appeal, Waltz sets itself apart by prioritizing sustainability at every step of the production process, providing yet another reason to admire their brand.

Another difference between the two is the pastel aesthetic conveys a sense of innocence and sweetness; the indie has more of a darker, moodie tone.


What could be more delightful than a curated collection of stunning shoes all in one charming location? Florence Gan, having left behind her career in Tinseltown as a costumer, followed her passion for exceptional footwear and transformed it into a thriving venture. In 2005, Vamp opened its doors in Silver Lake before relocating to the vibrant Los Feliz neighborhood in 2009. Each piece at Vamp is meticulously handpicked, offering shoes and accessories that epitomize the indie aesthetic with precision. Additionally, Vamp proudly showcases treasures from local artisans alongside offerings from esteemed international designers.

The Celect

Established in 2014, The Celect stands as a beacon of fashion curated by the dynamic duo, Carrie and Murphy Martines. With a discerning eye for style, this brand offers a thoughtfully selected range of men's and women's wear that reflects the couple's distinctive taste. Whether you're drawn to the indie grunge aesthetic or seeking elevated wardrobe essentials, The Celect has you covered. In addition to their eponymous in-house brand of refined basics, they also feature modern and sporty labels, as well as chic pieces for home decor.

Today, indie fashion is similar to the trends of the 2000s.This includes crop tops, baggy pants, collared shirts, and oversized Ts.

Taylor + Thomas

Hailing from Downtown Los Angeles, Taylor + Thomas epitomizes cruelty-free luxury in women's footwear, perfectly tailored for the vintage indie aesthetic. Co-founders Jessica and Elizabeth share a vision of infusing the industry with a uniquely feminine perspective, crafting products made by women, for women. Each collection by Taylor + Thomas focuses on wardrobe staple silhouettes, recognizing shoes as essential elements of any closet. Committed to eco-conscious practices, the brand prioritizes sustainability, believing that caring for the earth enhances our enjoyment of fashion.

Pari Desai

Renowned for her couture-like indie aesthetic, knitwear designer Pari Desai has a talent for crafting wearable pieces that exude runway-worthy allure. With a background at Calvin Klein and A.L.C., Desai's eponymous Los Angeles-based line strikes the perfect balance between upscale luxury and downtown cool. Expect her creations to become instant wardrobe essentials, effortlessly elevating your look with their distinctive style.

Indie makeup is natural or bright, sometimes heavy blush, and hair is worn however they feel like, although bright colors are common.

akin and co

Embodying the essence of California, Akin and Co is the quintessential addition to your closet. Their clothing effortlessly channels the "I woke up like this and still look amazing" vibe. From sumptuous linens to intricately printed silks, the brand excels in weekend dressing like no other. With a firm grasp on the indie grunge aesthetic, Akin and Co offers loose, breezy silhouettes that redefine and elevate coolness.

What are your go-to brands to achieve the indie aesthetic? Let us know in the comments below.

Need help with a home improvement project? Get a free quote today!

Enter Your Zip Code

Enter Your Zip Code

RELATED Articles

Discover More

fueled by the power of California love
We're committed to helping you discover the places, people and businesses that make our state Golden. Our online publication, updated daily, brings you all the content you need to live your California dreams. And that's just the beginning…
Purpose section
Purpose section