C California Style

Megan Hawkins. PHOTO: Daniel Le Breton
“This is McNear’s Beach. My great-grandfather, John A. McNear, owned the land as a ranch, brickyard and quarry. He provided a safe haven for the Chinese to live and work during the Chinese Exclusion Acts. Years later, our family donated it and it is now China Camp State Park,” says model Kyleigh Kühn, a sixth-generation Marin resident. PHOTO: Anthony Deeying at Lola Creative.
Tatjana Patitz. PHOTO: Coliena Rentmeester
Erin Wasson & Velvet. PHOTO: Hilary Walsh.
Michele Ouellet. PHOTO: Ray Roberts

A Model Summer

by C California Style

From Memorial Day to Labor Day, time just seems to slip away. Here, the Golden State’s natural beauties—from Kyleigh Kühn in San Francisco to Tatjana Patitz in Santa Barbara—share their picture-perfect plans. Plus, new discoveries in each locale.

Kyleigh Kühn PHOTO: Anthony Deeying at Lola Creative

Kyleigh Kühn
PHOTO: Anthony Deeying at Lola Creative

Kyleigh Kühn San Francisco

“California runs deep in my blood, and I know I could never sink my roots too deep into any other soil. But I am a bit of a tumbleweed as well, so I like to bounce around and learn new things from new lands,” says Kyleigh Kühn, 27, who recently relocated to her native Marin after four years on the East Coast.

Summers with her parents and three brothers were spent in the bucolic Sierra Nevadas, just west of Lake Tahoe. She’s also traveled to Afghanistan and Israel on behalf of Roots of Peace, an organization her mother founded to provide agricultural support in war-torn areas. This summer, Kühn is launching a dinner series for the charity and developing a new travel site with her father. She’s also embarking on a cross-country road trip with friends. “I can’t wait to see the Grand Canyon,” she says. “I feel like there is a great resurgence of American exploration going on…my generation is really celebrating camping and exploring.” Happy trails. 

Tatjana Patitz. PHOTO: Coliena Rentmeester

Tatjana Patitz Santa Barbara

While growing up in Sweden, Tatjana Patitz found respite at her family’s vacation home in Mallorca attending horse camps and spending idle days by the sea. Now, after two decades in Malibu, she’s taken up residence on the American Riviera. “Santa Barbara offers so many things and it feels like a small town. I am still discovering trails and love to kayak, paddleboard and sail. I also have my horses in Santa Ynez and get up there weekly to ride and enjoy the incredible beauty of the valley,” she says. 

This summer, with 10-year-old son Jonah, she’ll spend a month in Europe visiting family. When she’s not traveling, she devotes herself to animal protection organizations including WildAid and Defenders of Wildlife. After all, one swallow doesn’t make a summer. 

Michele Oullet  PHOTO: Ray Roberts

Michele Oullet
PHOTO: Ray Roberts

Michele Ouellet Napa/Sonoma

After being discovered at 15, Napa Valley native Michele Lorenza Ouellet, 26, would spend summers in Paris as her modeling career took off—a far cry from days as a kid shuttling between NorCal dressage competitions. Paris is also where she fell in love with rosé wine and, in 2008, she debuted the first vintage of Lorenza Rosé with her mother. This year, Ouellet, who recently shot a national Levi’s campaign, plans to kick off the warmer months with a birthday trip to Paris followed by a rosé research trip to the South of France. “Summer is always an exciting time for Lorenza Rosé and I’m looking forward to some pool time with a glass in hand!”

Megan Hawkins PHOTO: Daniel Le Breton

Megan Hawkins
PHOTO: Daniel Le Breton

Megan Hawkins  Orange County

“From an early age, I learned the dos and don’ts of the beach,” says Megan Hawkins. The 19-year-old up-and-comer had one of those quintessentially blessed Newport Beach upbringings—she was a lifeguard until she was discovered walking around nearby Huntington Beach (with a knee brace from a recent tennis injury, no less). Her first gig was for local fashion and design house Cleobella (a must-stop shop by Sunset Beach) and she’s since gone on to shoot for Elle Paris and Australia, Veronica Beard and the CR Fashion Book, in addition to NYFW tours. 

Last year, Hawkins was accepted by nine universities, but deferred to focus on modeling—she’s planning to spend the summer jetting in and out of John Wayne airport. “For me, even just a day in the California sun means happiness. There is nothing like driving 10 minutes down PCH to the Balboa Peninsula where I can walk around A street, or take my bike and cruise up and down the boardwalk until sunset.”

Erin Wasson & Velvet PHOTOS: Hilary Walsh

Erin Wasson & Velvet
PHOTOS: Hilary Walsh

Erin Wasson  Los Angeles

“Summers to me mean staying in one place. And I found a house in Venice that makes it so I really never want to leave. If I do, Big Sur and Joshua Tree are so close yet so perfectly far,” says Erin Wasson, who grew up in Texas like “any normal kid.”

Perhaps what makes it hard to leave home are her many start-ups. Wasson is currently developing an e-commerce site called Tinker Tailor, “a very cool concept where buyers can tailor their purchases.” She’s also relaunching Low Luv—her edgy jewelry line which debuted on the Alexander Wang catwalk in 2008-—to include a line of T-shirts inscribed with Wasson’s personal axioms (e.g., “Ignore the It Girl” and “Nobody Cares”). “I wanted to do a grassroots project by myself from beginning to end,” explains Wasson. “I ship directly from my house.” The entrepreneurial homebody does have one far-flung fantasy: “I would love to go to Greece. I’ve never been and may try and make it there this summer.”

Edited by Kelsey McKinnon PHOTOS: Anthony Deeying at Lola Creative