Friend Of Dorothy: Nick Verreos poses with all the Dorothy's at the 70Th Anniversary Wizard of Oz Opening Night Exhibition GalaIf anyone had any doubt that I was NOT a "Friend Of Dorothy", just look at these photos and read this blog! This week, I was invited to the Opening Night Gala Party for the 70Th Anniversary of The Wizard of Oz in Los Angeles. The location: Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising/FIDM. I decided to wear a blue gingham dress shirt and white dinner jacket. I was in "Dorothy Drag". Fuschia and Gingham: Nick Verreos and Tarina Tarantino, 70Th Anniversary of The Wizard Of Oz Opening Exhibition Night Gala
If you've been reading my blog, you may know that about a month ago, I was asked to be the Mentor of four FIDM alum who we hand-picked to design a gown (or a dress) inspired by the four iconic characters from The Wizard of Oz. Designer Tarina Tarantino also mentored FIDM students in the Jewelry Major, helping them create jewelry and accessories that were also inspired by the wonderful movie. Tarina also gave me a stupendous red crystal Heart Pin to wear for the night, which I proudly displayed on my jacket of course. The Finished Wizard Of Oz Creations: L to R: The Cowardly Lion, Dorothy, The Tin Man and The Scarecrow, all designed by former FIDM fashion design students
I was very nervous because this was to be the unveiling of their creations, and at the same time, a "graduation" of sorts for me, since I mentored, guided and helped these students in bringing to life these 2009 "high fashion" versions of The Cowardly Lion, The Tin Man, The Scarecrow, and of course, Dorothy. Tim Gunn...With a Beard: Wizard of Oz Fashion Design Mentor Nick Verreos stands with the FIDM alumni designers
The Exhibit--located at the FIDM Museum and Gallery-- showcased the designs from my former FIDM Advanced Fashion Design students, as well as The Ruby Slipper Collection. For that collection, nineteen designers, from Manolo Blahnik, to Betsey Johnson, Giuseppe Zanotti, and many others, created one-of-a-kind shoes inspired by the Ruby Slipper--with the help of Swarovski crystals--all on display in glass-encased "bubbles" that hung from the ceiling. Can I Wear These? Nick Verreos and a Roger Vivier design inspired by The Wizard of Oz Ruby SlipperWarner Brothers and FIDM conjured up a fantastic "set" for the evening's festivities. There was a "Yellow Carpet" and greeting me as I walked in were (what seemed like) a dozen Dorothy's, all in their blue gingham dresses. Of course, you know I had to pose with them! One of them, in fact, was the Grand-daughter of the writer of The Wizard Of Oz, L. Frank Baum (I know, crazy!). In the heart of the Grand Hope Park (unofficial "backyard" of the FIDM campus) was a HUGE Wizard of Oz Hot Air Balloon, which was brought here especially for this Opening Night Party for the Exhibition.
LC Who? Nick Verreos and Kristin Cavallari on the "yellow carpet", 70Th Annniversary of The Wizard of Oz Opening Night Party, FIDMGeorge Lopez showed up with his daughter Mayan, all done up in pink Juicy Couture and sporting lots of Tarina Tarantino jewelry. She saw me from afar and had mini-convulsions, telling me what a "big fan" she was of me and Project Runway (how cute is that?). I posed with the new "bad girl" of MTV's The Hills, Kristin Cavallari, who looked very sexy in an Herve Leger by Max Azria black "bandage" mini dress. I also spotted actress Debbie Mazar, in a long evening sun-dress and sandals; Lisa Loeb, and Linda Ramone, widow of Johnny Ramone. She was looking every bit a Rock Star's Wife, in a fringed and fur black coat, zebra print ensemble and knee-high boots. And of course, the requisite "don't-look-at-me" sunglasses. In one word: Fierce!
Dorothy Heaven: Nick Verreos kisses Momma on the "yellow carpet", 70Th Anniversary of The Wizard of Oz Opening Night Party, FIDMOne of my favorite guests of the night was Momma. Bigger-than-life Momma, besides being a DIVA, runs EC2, one of the world's best costume houses, so you KNOW she had to "bring it on" for this 70Th Anniversary Party. Momma sauntered into the party wearing a "Dorothy" costume to outdo all Dorothy costumes darling! She even had a basket with a miniature Toto. Well, I died and went to "Gay Heaven" after that!
LA Scene: Audrey Kitching, Nick Verreos and Clint Catalyst, 70Th Anniversary of The Wizard of Oz Opening Night Party, FIDMThe LA Fashion "world" was also well represented with LA designer Kevan Hall (a FIDM alum), Jared Gold, fashion pr goddess Margaret Schell, as well as others. Stylist and fashion/arts personality Clint Catalyst was also there, with his date, the very sexy Audrey Kitching. Both looked FABULOUS in their ensembles! And that's not all kiddies, I have even MORE to say on this Amazing Event! Check out my Guest Blog for California Apparel News HERE. Also check out Towleroad and the Advocate for more DISH!