Taylor Reeve

“When I design I want to be the talk of the room,” Taylor Reeve says. “I want my designs and products to always start up conversations, get you noticed, make you stand out.” If that’s her goal, then the imaginative SoCal designer who has worked for Quiksilver (look for her outerwear line this winter), Bell Helmets, Dragon Alliance (sunglasses and goggles), and Skullcandy has succeeded. “I’m always thinking of what the badass, unique, sexy girl would want. The girl who isn’t afraid to state her opinion, the girl whose confidence is through the roof. The girl who wants to strut her stuff and know she’s looking fine.”

Christian Louboutin may have been the first to showcase the bottom of a woman’s foot with his red-soled heels, but Reeve really took that idea and ran with it by personalizing the bottoms of pumps. “It’s prime real estate!” she says. “I love me some high heels. Who doesn’t? Sometimes artwork all over a shoe is just too much—but underneath is subtle, sexy, and a nice little surprise for everyone.” The amazement on the undersides of her heels come in the form of sugar skulls, tattoo-style roses, and even an inked Alice in Wonderland. “Alice is rockin’ some roses, an evil eye with flares, ‘one love’ in script, and a little anchor,” she says. “I always throw in some of my own tattoos or ones that I’m planning on getting in the future, like a little signature of some sort.”

The only dichotomy between her design work and her own tattoos is that her products are vibrantly colorful but her ink is all California black-and-gray. “I love the look of black-and-gray tattoos, and I feel like they flow better on my olive skin,” Reeve says. “I paint a lot outside in the sun, so for fading purposes that’s no bueno. I’m also usually rocking bright colors, so for the tattoos, black-and-gray is good … I don’t want to look like a big, blonde bag of Skittles.”

Mike Suarez of 77 Tattoo has been working on her sleeve for the past couple of years, and the lion’s share of her work has a family theme. She has her parents’ and sister’s portraits tied together with roses and “better together” on her arm. “Oh, and I have a little tribute to Elvis,” Reeve adds. “With the words ‘My blue suede shoes.’” —Robert McCormick

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