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Designer Richard Tyler's South Pasadena studio gutted by fire

June 8, 2012 |  1:43 pm

Fashion designer and South Pasadena resident Richard Tyler in 2004.

The South Pasadena studio of fashion designer Richard Tyler, who has made clothes for Elton John, Cher, and Diana Ross among others, was gutted by fire early Friday in a blaze investigators believe was caused by an electrical malfunction.

The fire broke out at 9:30 a.m. at the 525 Mission St. studio, said South Pasadena Fire Battalion Chief Philip Guiral.

Firefighters quickly called for assistance and were joined by 15 fire engines from Alhambra, Pasadena, San Marino and Arcadia, Guiral said.

No one was injured in the blaze and the 4,500-square-foot building itself, made of concrete block, was still standing.

But flames and smoke destroyed what was inside. “Most of the damage seemed to be bolts of cloth, mannequins and that kind of thing,” Guiral said.

Tyler family members declined to comment. A estimate of the damages was not immediately available.

Guiral said the investigation of the fire wasn't complete, but "right now, we're going with electrical" malfunction.

The Australian-born Tyler, a South Pasadena resident, began working at age 16 as a tailor and became a designer for rock stars in the 1970s. He moved to California in 1984, according to his Fashion Model Directory biography.

He’s won the Costume Fashion Designers of America Award three times. An Italian company licenses to produce his Richard Tyler Collection line of sportswear and menswear.


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Photo: Fashion designer and South Pasadena resident Richard Tyler in 2004 at the Norton Simon Museum. Credit: Robert Lachman / Los Angeles Times