Fashion Group International of Dallas: Fashion & Lifestyle Awards ‘Night of Stars’ Shine

This is almost my last ‘must-do’ item on my FGI checklist, only two weeks after the event.  After a year of planning, I can finally relinquish my responsibilities as co-chair for the Fashion and Lifestyle Awards ‘Night of Stars’ gala and reminisce on the extraordinary evening of November 16 at the Dallas Market Center Trade Pavilion.

Lela Rose, Chuck Steelman and Maxine Trowbridge

Lela Rose, Chuck Steelman and Maxine Trowbridge

My co-chair Chuck Steelman, decked out in bright red velvet skinny pants, looked impeccable as my partner in crime—and I wore a delicious red lace gown by honoree Nha Khanh. Our emcee for the evening Victoria Snee, endearingly proclaimed the evening as the “Chuck and Max Show.”

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Nha Khanh Honored as Rising Star in Fashion Design by FGI Dallas

Khanh loves Dallas—with great resources located right here; Khanh has no desire to move her studio to New York City. With sales, marketing and a PR team driving the brand in the big apple, celebrities, buyers and magazine editors are taking note of this Rising Star from Dallas.  Khanh focuses on the design and production from Dallas, and with evident success over the last two years, it’s only natural that the FGI Dallas board voted unanimously, for Nha Khanh to be the Rising Star in Fashion Design—amidst many worthy designers that this city nurtures. 

Nha Khanh Spring 2013 Collection

Nha Khanh Spring 2013 Collection

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Carolina Herrera Spring Presentation with Town & Country

Who knew that over sixty guests could elegantly mingle, and partake in an exclusive fashion presentation of the 2013 Spring / Summer collection, and dine at a seated lunch inside the sleek, petite, Carolina Herrera boutique at Highland Park Village.

Last month in partnership with the Dallas Contemporary and Town & Country Magazine, I hosted this artistic luncheon, alongside my co-host and triple-threat friend, Broadway actress Catherine Carpenter Cox. We hoped to entertain about fifty ladies, but with over sixty RSVPs, the chic brown-toned store, transformed into a decidedly incandescent lunch banquet fit for a princess—pun-intended.

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AERIN: A Conversation with Aerin Lauder

Effortless Beauty, no small feat, but an endeavor we all aspire to achieve, sounds easy, but rarely is anything to do with beauty—easy.  Earlier this month I met with Aerin Lauder at a cocktail reception hosted in her honor by Ken Downing and Neiman Marcus. Aerin was visiting Dallas to showcase her recently launched beauty line, and chat about her Holiday 2012 Color Collection: An Evening Out and An Evening In.  Post-cocktails, I visited Neiman Marcus at NorthPark Center the next day to chat with Aerin. So, how does one achieve effortless beauty? Aerin knows how…

Tell me about the Holiday Collection?  It’s a wonderfully edited collection that’s really about an evening in or an evening out, very festive, there are two neutral lipsticks—in every collection that we do, I love neutrals and nudes, it’s something that I feel very strong about and it’s something that is unique about this brand. We’ve got the two fashion colors, pinks and deep plum that comes out quite cheery when you put it on and then two nudes, and then these wonderful two new lip glosses that I love.  The palette is really wonderful you can’t make a mistake with it, it’s very easy to apply, easy to mix the colors, and the highlighter on the left is easy for your cheekbone or brow bone, and it’s very easy to update a look from day to evening.

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Holmes & Yang: Jeanne Yang Chats

Katie Holmes is the Yin, in Jeanne’s Yang, a rarefied fusion of celebrity notoriety with tangible versatility that equates to a collection of ease and subtle luxury.  Home grown—the Holmes & Yang collection is 100% made in the USA, mostly in Manhattan and also LA and currently only available in a few boutiques.  Fortunately we can thank Brian Bolke at Forty Five Ten and his discerning eye for making the exclusive collection available in Dallas. Brian invited me to chat with Katie’s partner Jeanne Yang, and needless to stay Jeanne is a doll, and I am enamored with the collection. It’s all in the detail; quite literally precision and perfection poise Holmes & Yang for success.

Max: Tell me about your design background?  Yang: I started my career working at a magazine, Detour—which is now Flaunt magazine, as a managing editor. It featured Keanu Reeves, Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz, who were all very young and had just started out—Charlize Theron was still a model at the time.  I was really interested in the fashion portion, so I decided to change careers, and worked for a small line called, Product. We had a teeny, tiny store in West Hollywood; within two years of being there, we went from a few boutiques to 300 doors, with in-store boutiques in every Bloomingdales.

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Esteban Cortazar: A Rebirth

Maybe you’ve already heard about Esteban Cortazar, maybe you haven’t, but if you like to witness a designer blossom through the next chapter of their career, then you should move Mr. Cortazar to the top of your watch list.

Born in Bogotá, Columbia, I first met Esteban Cortazar back in 2002 during my time working for Ocean Drive Magazine in Miami, he visited the office to be featured as a young, emerging designer from Miami at the mere age of 18—when he started his eponymous collection.  By 2007, at the age of 23, Cortazar was offered an amazing opportunity and placed his collection on hold and moved to Paris to take the helm at the House of Ungaro.

Lets just simply say that Cortazar has design integrity—which may of been his downfall at Ungaro, he was let go as Head of Design after he refused to work with Lindsay Lohan—who was hired as an artistic consultant. Who can blame him? Smart choice if you ask me: badly-behaved celebrity vs. luxury integrity—which would you choose? Cortazar should be revered for his reluctance to succumb to the impetuous notions of a flighty thespian, but all in good time, I believe he will have his moment soon enough.

 

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A Moveable Feast

Four courses, four galleries and plenty to chew on—how could I turn down that invitation? Last Friday I attended the unique Moveable Feast with other Board Members from the Dallas Contemporary—a special invitation to view new exhibitions at these fine galleries—a day prior to their opening.

The brain child of Conduit Gallery owner Nancy Whitenack—rallied up local gallerists Cris Worley, Missy Finger and Holly Johnson, to share an intimate gathering with exhibition artists.

First Course: Conduit Gallery + FT33.  Nancy Whitenack served up the first course with FT33, a new restaurant due to open in the Design District this fall, needless to say, the hors d’oeuvre was delicious.  Two new exhibitions are open for only a month, and both artist Susan and Mimi shared insight into their inspiration. Both complementary and juxtaposed—one conjured from thoughts of dreams, the other taken from the elements of everyday life in Japan.

Worthy of some whimsy, view Susan Kae Grant: Theatrical Realms of the Whimsical & Tragic, and snap back to reality with Mimi Kato: One Ordinary Day of an Ordinary Town. Open September 8  — October 6, 2012. Conduit Gallery: 1626 Hi Line Dr. #C, visit: Conduit Gallery. 

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Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin: Pretty Much Everything

Circa 1994—I remember that time well when I lived in London, and revered The Face magazine. Grunge was in full throttle, with images of dirty realism that filtered editorial fashion stories, and a skinny Kate Moss rocked the heroin chic look that typified the standard, arbitrary dress code.

The Face, 1994, For Your Pleasure: Well Basically Basuco is Coke Mixed with Kerosine…

In complete contrast, fashion photographers Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin catapulted into notoriety, as a digitally savvy duo with the glossy fashion story, titled, “For Your Pleasure.” Featured in the British fashion and pop culture magazine The Face, in early ‘94, the story featured a highly stylized, explosion of explicit glamour and expression of pure hedonism—uniquely composed of stock photos and hyper real backdrops.

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