Lola Star says she first “dreamt her fabulous T-shirt line into existence,” in 1991. It was a dream, she explains, “born out of the magical thumping techno bass of abandoned electronic music parties in Detroit,” the city where Star started selling her line of glittering tees.
That dream of creating empowering clothing eventually brought Star to Coney Island, where in 2001 she opened the Lola Star Souvenir Boutique on the Boardwalk.
Since then, her entrepreneurial efforts have “dazzled millions of visitors to Coney Island with the fabulous line of merchandise that we design, hand-make at our studio in Sunset Park and sell at The Lola Star Souvenir Boutique on the Coney Island Boardwalk, the Lola Star Surf Shop in the Stillwell Avenue Subway Station in Coney Island, our brand-new Rockaway Beach Boutique, our online boutique, and our new shop opening in Stapleton, Staten Island, in the spring of 2017.”
Star’s love for Coney Island runs deep. When developers began making serious overtures to remake Brooklyn’s iconic resort, Star formed “Save Coney Island,” a group dedicated to preserve its historic amusement aspect. In 2008, Glamour Magazine and famed fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger were so impressed with Lola’s Save Coney Island achievements and bold community activism that they chose her as the winner of their nationwide “Dreaming” contest. They created the film “Dreamland” about her life and the fulfillment of her dream of transforming the abandoned, castle-like Childs building on the Coney Island Boardwalk into a vibrant Roller Rink. For two years, Lola’s Dreamland Roller Rink filled the Child’s building with roller disco magic.
In addition to being an artist, designer and boutique owner, the Woman of Distinction is also the reigning Queen of Roller Disco. She hosts weekly Dreamland Roller Disco Parties in Prospect Park on Fridays throughout the summer.
“I’m passionate about community. My love for my community inspired me to risk everything to save it when the integrity of Coney Island’s amusement district was threatened by developers,” she says.
Star stepped up her activism again in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, helping lead relief and rebuilding efforts after her shop and much of the surrounding seaside neighborhood was destroyed by the killer storm.
Star also takes great pride for having organized the “No Condos in Coney” demonstration at City Hall in March, 2007. “That was the very first demonstration I ever organized. I had no idea what I was doing but the day was tremendously successful.”
Asked what she thinks her most important contribution to her Brooklyn neighborhood is, this Woman of Distinction says: “I definitely bring the fun and sparkle … but I also bring the soul and truth. I have a deep respect for the diversity and character of Brooklyn. I strive to celebrate and amplify that unique Brooklyn character in all that I do!”
Neighborhood: Coney Island.
Occupation: Artist, designer, creator of magical worlds.
Company: Lola Star & Dreamland Roller Disco.
Claim To Fame: Roller disco queen of Coney Island.
Favorite Brooklyn Place: Coney Island.
Woman I Admire: Several other female Brooklyn business owners — Superfine, house of yes, Chez Oscar, etc. I’m inspired by other strong, smart, creative business women within my community.
Motto or Life Saying: Shoot for the moon; even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.
©2017 Community News Group