The Invitation read : "Chris Benz Invites You for Sunset Cocktails and Raw Bar in Venice Beach". I'm in! Chris Benz is one of my favorite "up-and-coming" designers (I say it in quotes since I think he's beyond up-and-coming, he's "made it" kids!).Benz Girls: Nick Verreos poses with Satya Kulkowitz and actress Eva Amurri (Susan Sarandon's beautiful daughter), in Chris Benz designs To prove this, the illustrious Council of Fashion Designers of America, or CFDA, just announced its new 31 members, and voila: Chris Benz was one of them! Seattle-reared, Parsons graduate, Chris Benz shows in NY and considers his muse "an ageless sophisticate...a reckless preppy". Well, I wanted to go to this party to see some of those sophisticated Benz girls! I drove to Venice Beach and met up with my friends, including Greg Broussard who runs The Focus Studio right by the beach. Shots Anyone? The Hennessy Black Cognac Serve Yourself Shot Table The party was at the Craftsman residence of cuties Thomas and Hill, on what my friend Greg schooled me was a "Walk Street" (he was teaching me some "Venice terminology", thank you very much). As we arrived, we were greeted by a Flamenco guitarist on the front lawn and an open bar with delicious Hennessy Black Cognac cocktails on the porch. I immediately ran into the designer and host himself, Chris Benz, looking very tan and trim.The Raw Bar, Chris Benz' Summer Cocktail party in Venice California Inside, the cocktail party was in full swing as guests, including actor Cuba Gooding Jr., enjoyed the "Raw Bar" consisting of oysters, giant shrimp and other nibblings. Thomas and Hill's home was GORGEOUS and so, along with my friends, we "helped ourselves" to a tour. I love Craftsman Homes and this was certainly a gem with its hardwood floors, wood beams, exposed rafters , and hand-crafted cabinetry. We eventually made it up to the attic which held the real "Stars" of the party: Chris Benz' beautiful clothes. Highlights from his Fall/Winter 2009 Collection were on display on black lacquered mannequins, like fashion DIVAS who somehow got lost and ended up creating their own "fashion soiree" up there. Attic Fashion Show: Chris Benz Fall/Winter 2009 designs Supple mustard-colored shaved mink (Dear Lord!), copper silk chiffon sequined floor-length skirts as well as brightly-colored silk printed cocktail dresses and blouses were on display for all guests to see, feel and admire. A simple Craftsman-style attic became a gallery-style fashion display. Only in Venice California.
My new date: Nick Verreos tries to take a Chris Benz girl home I had finally found where his "ageless sophisticated" Chris Benz girls were! And as you can see from the photo, they were the only women I really wanted to be hanging out with at this party!