La Fashionista Offers Treasures from Tucson’s Past

September 24, 2013

By Christy Krueger

Bright colors entice the eye at La Fashionista.

Bright colors entice the eye at La Fashionista. Photo by Daniel Wilson/

After studying fashion design and studio art followed by a teaching stint at Tucson Design College, Eleonor Leon was well prepared to pursue her passion in retail and this year opened La Fashionista in Downtown Tucson.

“My whole life, one of my dreams was to have my own shop,” she said. “My aunt opened a shop in Nogales and went to L.A. to buy products. I decided I’m going to do what I want to do.”

With the help of her 17-year-old entrepreneurial-minded son, Leon began researching Downtown locations. “I realized something was happening Downtown and I wanted to be a part of it.”

Earlier this year she closed the deal on a space at 6th Avenue and Broadway Boulevard and on July 13 opened her fashion art and retro/collectibles boutique filled with truly one-of-a-kind finds.

“I make clothing art from Mac computer keyboard keys. I make clothing out of guitar picks. I carry my work plus vintage and consignment items. I have vinyl records, 8-tracks, furniture, vintage bags, shoes for men and women.”

Being a Tucson history buff, Leon collects pieces of the city’s past and is particularly drawn to treasures from the era when she was growing up. She has the old Greasy Tony’s restaurant sign, a bust from Wig-O-Rama and the cash register from The Grill. “They all meant something to me because they were there in the eighties when I was a kid.”

Eleanor brings her experience in the design world to Downtown Tucson.

Eleanor brings her experience in the design world to Downtown Tucson. Photo by Daniel Wilson.

La Fashionista’s primary demographic, Leon said, is a young crowd – twenties to thirties, but she draws a variety of folks. Promotional strategies include distributing flyers to The Cadence student housing complex, opening her doors for 2nd Saturdays Downtown and designing fashions for Tucson Fashion Week, October 17-19, part of which will take place at Tucson Museum of Art.

Leon is working to expand her exposure by networking with other artists and participating in additional events. Social media is currently her best marketing tool, particularly her page on Facebook.

Her overall goals are to continue creating fashion art, to offer superior customer service because she feels it’s often lacking in today’s retail shopping experience, and to become a significant part of Tucson’s Downtown community.

La Fashionista is located at  45 S. 6th Ave. More information is available at 551-8382 or on Facebook.