Alisha Gomez

Associate Reporter

Alisha Gomez is a Business Journal contributing writer and a former editor at the paper. She covers apparel and retail. She can be reached at

Recent Stories

Daily Deals Site Touts Ties to Local Charities as Trump Card

MEDIA: Good Magazine gives thumbs up in knock on Groupon

DealGooder: trying to change how folks shop—one deal at a time

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Silver Spoons Out, Work Ethic In for These Offspring

A look at children of rich OC parents, aka Generation W

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How Did He Do That?

Burke Gets Results, Plaudits for Leadership Style

GENERAL COUNSEL AWARDS - A look at the honorees: Daniel Burke, St. John Knits International Inc.

Purse, Jewelry Designer Lands Mariah Carey, Others as Fans

APPAREL: Yorba Linda mom does clutches with glam flare

Michelle Monroe’s jewelry, handbags appeal to stars and regular consumers

Entrepreneur Takes Edgy Tack With ‘Morphine Lips’ Line of Lip Balms

COSMETICS: 26-year-old son of immigrants behind company

Morphine Lips aims to combines rock n’ roll and high fashion

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Jean Genie

Designer Darwin Does Ultra Pricey Denim

Mychael Darwin has gained a following with his upscale jackets and jeans

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Cell Phone Losing Mom Reinvents Fanny Pack with Hipzbag

APPAREL: Startup gets boost from QVC, new styles in works

INNOVATION: A San Clemente entrepreneur is putting a stylish twist on the fanny pack

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Beauty Bid

Australia’s Mor Cosmetics Goes After U.S. Market From Los Alamitos Base

Mor Cosmetics is building U.S. sales from its local base in Los Alamitos

Brea Designer, 29, Creates Buzz With Her Line of Swimsuits

APPAREL: Lolli Beach’s suits pair bows, ruffles with sexy cuts

YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS - Local startup Lolli Beach Candy’s swimsuits are playful and colorful

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Publishers, Hollywood Take Liking to Laguna Niguel Author’s Novels

Local author Alyson Noël is seeing success with her young adult novels

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Shoe Designer Draws Inspiration From Peru, Recycled Tires

APPAREL: Trendy shoes sold online, at coastal OC boutiques

INNOVATION - Profiles of inventions, innovations and entrepreneurs. G.A.Y. Inc. in Tustin makes chic shoes out of tires

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Time to Decide

Some Seek Investors for Cash Flow Help, Others Unwilling to Give Up Their “Baby”

Ask any small business about keys to growth and they’ll likely bring up cash flow.

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Many switch from corporate to startups; flexibility is key

The latest trend in small business might be the mom sitting next to you.

Posh Nail Salons Competing With Discounters in Recovering Market

BEAUTY: Shop touts ambiance, cleanliness; prices double rivals

Upscale nail salons in OC compete with cheaper, bigger rivals

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Itty Bitty Bras Get Bigger for Home-Based Irvine Entrepreneur

APPAREL: Celebs aboard, new products for neglected niche

Profiles of inventions, innovations and entrepreneurs: An Irvine bra designer is seeing sales grow by targeting a niche

Arbonne Veterans Try Hand at Direct Sales Skincare Company

COSMETICS: Apriori’s small, growing; creams, drink, tablets

Apriori Beauty has plans to grow with more products and salespeople

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In the Swim of Things

New Brands, Sales Abroad Keep Raj Growing

Tustin-based swimsuit maker Raj Manufacturing has continued to grow in a down economy by focusing on global markets

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Wood Work

Ganahl Lumber Spans 126 Years, Five Generations

Profile of the Business Journal’s Family Owned Business Awards winner, Ganahl Lumber

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Local Coupon Publications Blanket OC to Buck Slowdown

PUBLISHING: Revista Set to Add New Titles to Roster


ATMs, Debit Cards, Check Processing Bring Heady Growth

RETAIL: U.S. Alliance offers equipment, fulfills transactions


Model to Copy: Outsourcing Technical Expertise

MEDIA: Tech Services Let Clients Focus on Core


Tattoo Nation Spurs Edgy Sullen Clothing

APPAREL: Company known for graphic Tees eyeing juniors market

Sales are up for tattoo-inspired clothing maker Sullen Clothing

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Brothers’ Vision: Less Glare, More Brand Leverage

FASHION: Athletes, actor give Kaenon a marketing boost

Newport Beach glasses maker Kaenon Polarized is making a splash

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Shoemaker Blends Fashion, Love of Hawaii, Family Culture

Profile of OluKai Inc. on the Business Journal’s second annual Best Places to Work list

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Forget Roach Coaches, Food Trucks Are Cool

DINING: Gourmet trucks create Web buzz; crepes, chipotle dogs

Gourmet food trucks are making a foray into Orange County.

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Beyond Roxy: Quiksilver Does Juniors Line

APPAREL: More fashionable clothes make up in-between line

Quiksilver is coming out with a new line geared toward women in their early 20s

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Billabong Strikes Deal for Rvca, Avoids Bidding War for Retailer


Billabong USA snatched up the county’s top upstart clothing brand and appears to have prevailed in a short-lived battle to buy a Canadian retailer

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Direct-Seller Arbonne Focuses on Products After Bankruptcy


An Irvine skincare company is getting a makeover after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

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Niche, Luxottica Helping Oakley Defy Downturn

Oakley continues to report epic growth despite a struggling retail industry

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Employment at Apparel Makers Stabilizes

CLOTHING: Cautious optimism for emerging gains in second half

ABOUT THE LIST: The county’s largest apparel companies saw employment stabilize in the past 12 months. Includes the 2010 OC's TOP 30 APPAREL COMPANIES List for download (pdf)

Father-Son Startup Pushes Line of Changeable, Zipper Shoes

APPAREL: Zipz see sales abroad, eyes gains here with retail rebound

A small Irvine company is peddling interchangeable zipper top shoes

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Volcom's Woolcott Reflects on Earliest Ventures: Wastebaskets, Golf Balls

It all started with selling wastebaskets, Volcom Inc. Chief Executive Richard Woolcott said Wednesday while being honored with the first Entrepreneur of the Year award by the Leatherby Entrepreneurship Center at Orange's Chapman University.

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Upstart Clothing Brand Tavik Turns Corner with Duke Line

APPAREL: John Wayne, other licensing deals help pull through slump; company still in survival mode

APPAREL: Tavik Industries is a smaller OC clothing maker that’s found a friend in a household name here—John Wayne

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Volcom Weathers Slump, Eyes Bigger Market Slice

APPAREL: Market, retailer issues linger, but co. better off than others

Volcom is looking to emerge from the downturn with a big goal in sight

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Ruling Winds Down ‘Roxy’ War

APPAREL: Quiksilver, rival both claim qualified wins; back to 2004

Quiksilver saw an appeals court reverse a ban against a rival clothing maker, but it says it still came out ahead in the ruling

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Action Sports Clothing Conference: Don't Chase Fast Fashion

Makers of surf-inspired and other action sports should stick to what they do best as they go after the large, yet fickle market of teen girls and young women.

Roxy Quandary

Surfer Girl Pioneer Adjusts, Waits for Market Turn

Surfer babe Roxy is caught in fast fashion’s riptide

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Trial by Fire for Surf Buzz Brand O’Quinn

APPAREL: Downturn saw issues of survival; sales small, growing

Huntington Beach’s O’Quinn Clothing is one of OC’s buzz brands

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After Graduation

Some Large Firms Cut Back on Summer Associates, Jobs; Small, Midsize Firms Still Hiring

What law students are doing about a law firm freeze on summer associate programs.

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PacSun Boss Taps Lessons from Vans, Dad

APPAREL: Schoenfeld has work cut out at struggling mall retailer

A look at PacSun’s chief executive and the company’s turnaround efforts

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Clothing Makers, Retailers Close Books on Tough ’09

APPAREL: Action sports industry rides out worrisome holiday season

Holiday cash registers closed last week with a mix of fear and hope for sellers and makers of clothes inspired by surfing, skateboarding and snowboarding

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Wet Seal Turnaround Enters Critical Stage

RETAIL: Wet Seal stores limp into holidays, Arden B. chain stronger

In the words of one analyst, Wet Seal is in the running to become the turnaround story of retailers,

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Commercials, Retailers Spur 290% Revenue Surge at Monkey Hook

RETAIL: Quirky ads, early Ace Hardware boost drew other stores

Fast-Growing Private Cos. No. 9 - Monkey Hook LLC

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Shoe Polish

Laguna Beach’s Auri Footwear Makes Name Among Stars, Gets Forbes Nod

A local company is taking a stab at the crowded shoe market with comfortable, stylish shoes

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Pacific Sunwear CEO Outlines Comeback Plan

RETAIL: Teen clothes seller eyes big brands, shoes, hip factor

The new chief executive at mall retailer Pacific Sunwear has outlined his turnaround tactics

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Entrepreneur Magazine Being Bought by Private Equity Firms

Irvine-based Entrepreneur Media Inc., publisher of Entrepreneur magazine, is being bought by two private equity firms, according to a report Friday.

Ambassadors Shopping Cruise Line

Ambassadors International Inc. has put its upscale cruise line up for sale.

UCI Nabs $27.2 in State Funding for Stem Cell Center

The University of California, Irvine, on Wednesday said it received $27.2 million from the state to build its stem cell research facility.

Mixed Bag for PacSun, Wet Seal Feb. Sales

Same-store sales in February were a mixed bag for Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. and Wet Seal Inc.

Volcom Q4 Earnings Solid; Q1 Mixed Bag

Costa Mesa-based Volcom Inc. offered no surprises with fourth-quarter and 2007 earnings, but did offer some mixed guidance for the current quarter.