Jade Phoenix Cashmere in Rancho Santa Fe

by Vanessa Valiente

In the spirit of holiday sweater season, meet Lena Evans and her fashionable alter ego Jade Phoenix - a chic line of designer sweaters.

A former Hollywood executive, Lena Evans now provides cashmere, vintage and new sweaters adorned with jewels to upscale clientele, including some of Hollywood's biggest stars, right from home in Rancho Santa Fe.

Looking like quite the starlet herself, Evans is of French and Vietnamese decent that not only lends credit to her beauty but for her label's moniker as well. Lena's Vietnamese birth name, Phueng Ngoc, when translated to English means Jade Phoenix. However, it was Lena's love of cashmere sweaters and her frustration with low quality buttons that inspired fruition of the Jade Phoenix line.

Most cashmere sweaters are made with plastic or shell buttons for closures while the Jade Phoenix line features precious and semi-precious gems. Lena is proud that even the most discerning clients of both genders will have cashmere with quality buttons that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing.

The Local Look

You can't help but be reminded of such a philosophy when looking at Lena's personal style that radiates with understated elegance. Says Lena, "I do not do anything over the top. I like to look put together, but never too fussy or deliberate."

Lena styles her favorite Jade Phoenix sweaters to polish her classic look; purple cardigan with amethyst, red with ruby, ivory with pearls, and orange spice with carnelian. When asked if she indulges in her cashmere crush everyday Lena replies, "In the winter you can almost guarantee seeing me in cashmere every day."

But Lena isn't the only stunning female sporting the Jade Phoenix look. Her previous career as a successful senior Hollywood motion picture finance and production executive sealed Lena's relationships with celebrity clientele. With a zeal for fashion and luxury, she cultivated the symbiosis of celebrity-driven fashion and film industries to make way for a natural transition as an insider within the high-fashion world.

Celebrity Spotlight

Cameron Diaz has the powder blue cardigan with the blue topaz hanging in her closet while Bette Midler is enjoying the always-fabulous green poncho with freshwater pearls. Other high-profile owners of Jade Phoenix cashmere include Ellen Degeneres, Tiffany Trump, Andy Baldwin and Michael O'Keefe.

In the future Lena would love to see Catherine Zeta-Jones in her designs, "She is a classic beauty!" Always an advocate for a timeless look, Lena would love to see a woman like Zeta-Jones in the solid colored cardigan over a patterned dress. As for a man, she would love to put San Diegan golf great Phil Mickelson in a one of her golf vests. On this topic, she wouldn't balk at seeing Tiger Woods in one of her vests either.

Your Cashmere Crush

Although her cashmere passion is contagious, don't rush off to the stores just yet. This on-the-rise sweater line needs to be ordered. Jade Phoenix is a private client business, providing each buyer a personal approach to the high-fashion product.

Every Jade Phoenix item is a one-of-a-kind, custom-designed creation with each pearl or gem adornment unique in its own right. You may even contact Lena if you would like to create a sweater with your own bespoke specifications. However, when questioned about Jade Phoenix showing up in San Diego stores, Lena said she would not be opposed to selling her line in some of the best boutiques in San Diego, specifically The Royal Nursery in Rancho Santa Fe and Rare Earth in Del Mar.

"I am happy to see that men and women are dressing up more and more," Lena says of San Diego style.

That is not to say, however, that a cashmere sweater is only fashionably fit for the holidays or dressy occasions. Lena recommends pairing one of her cardigans or sweaters with jeans - perfect for the high-end San Diegan trying to ditch the outdated velour suit.

December is a spirited month abundant with holiday events and winter cocktail parties. And with the gradual maturation of San Diego's laid-back style there is no time like the present to discover the Jade Phoenix line.

Check out San Diego's own celebrity stylist Lena Evan's line Jade Phoenix at jadephoenixdesigns.com.


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