Sunday, October 18, 2009
Vintage Couture at Downtown Los Angeles Fashion Week Nick Verreos with Leanna Lewis (in Elizabeth Mason Couture) Last Thursday night, I was invited to a very special fashion show presentation as part of Downtown Los Angeles Fashion Week. The show, entitled A Celebration of Valentino, The Last Emperor was "curated" by Elizabeth Mason, stylish owner of vintage couture boutique The Paper Bag Princess and designer of her namesake Elizabeth Mason Couture line. The event was the official presentation of the Los Angeles Spirit Award For Style & Substance to actress and humanitarian (and style DIVA) Maria Bello.
Hourglass: Actress Maria Bello (in Elizabeth Mason Couture) at the "A Celebration of Valentino, the Last Emperor" As we entered MOCA, I spotted my friend, Christopher Ciccone as well as LA City Department of Cultural Affairs and Style Ambassador, Cynthia Ruiz, my friend Raymundo Baltazar and Downtown LA Fashion Week co-organizer, Leanna Lewis (wearing Elizabeth Mason Couture, she confided). City of LA Lady In Red: Cynthia Ruiz flanked by Raymundo Baltazar and Nick Verreos We chatted and enjoyed some yummy cocktails before the show. As my NIKOLAKI partner, David Paul and I sat down, I realized I was seated two seats away from actor Lukas Haas and spotted the "Latin Fabulous" Daisy Fuentes (I said "hello" and she was so beautiful and so sweet!) as well as actress Garcelle Beauvais, whom I co-hosted the Gen Art Fresh Faces of Fashion a couple of years back, across the runway.Justin Timberlake Who? My new obsession, singer Matt Goss, opening "A Celebration of Valentino, The Last Emperor" A surprising highlight of the entire show was a show-stopping performance by my new favorite HOTTIE, singer Matt Goss, who has been dubbed "The New Frank Sinatra". He also just happens to be Daisy Fuentes' fiance (that's why she was there!). He poured his heart, soul (and singing pipes) into his show, backed by Robin Antin's Pussycat Dolls Las Vegas Dancers. The jaded LA fashionista audience barely blinked an eye when he finished but Lord knows I was hootin' and hollerin'. I didn't care. This guy is really good! You are one lucky girl, Daisy!A Vodka Martini, please: A 1960s chic one shoulder black silk chiffon caftan gown with feathers The fashion show began, and curiously enough, there were no Valentino gowns in this fashion show. Elizabeth Mason explained in her run-of-show notes, that "after my 15 years as a couture vintage purveyor, I have less than a handful of vintage Valentino gowns...once acquired, they are forever cherished and rarely, if ever dispensed of". LA-Greek God: A 1980s James Galanos blouson sleeved gown The show was her ode to Signore Garavani and his creations--and love of red. There were great vintage dresses and gowns--mostly in black --spanning the 1930s, 40s and 80s, featuring the creations of Irene, Adrian, Nolan Miller, Yves Saint Laurent, Versace, and one of my favorites, James Galanos. Walk Slowly: Spring/Summer 2010 Elizabeth Mason Couture red "Maria" gown Included in the show were pieces from Mason's own line, Elizabeth Mason Couture, such as red silk taffeta wraps, and some VERY fitted (like a glove!) siren gowns (Maria Bello was wearing one). I can't imagine the knee sweep (Advanced Fashion School terminology, sorry kiddies) on them but trust me, these are gowns to stand and hold Martinis in--not to sit. Which is how it should be! Click BELOW for a video of the final model exits, Elizabeth Mason Couture/Paper Bag Princess Fashion Show: