Wednesday, August 22, 2012

San Diego LOVE:

San Diego TV Time: (Left to right) KUSI News"Good Morning San Diego" Co-Anchor Kerri Lane, Leonard Simpson and Nick Verreos

This past weekend, I went to San Diego for some very special events I had scheduled on my "Nick Calendar": the FIDM San Diego Open House AND a KUSI News "Good Morning San Diego" TV appearance. On Friday, I left LA in the middle of the day and it took an excruciating FOUR HOURS to drive through Friday afternoon/rush hour traffic.

 David Paul and Nick Verreos--with Benny!

But I wasn't alone---along for my "LA-San Diego ride" were my NIKOLAKI design partner David Paul (who hails from San Diego so this gives him a chance to visit his family) and our NIKOLAKI "Mascot"--Benny, our doggie! (we LOVE Benny!). They made the ride a little better needless to say (because I slept while David and Benny drove!). 

Nick Verreos at FIDM San Diego, with Petco Park in the background

The weather in San Diego was GORGEOUS--very hot but beautiful as always (it's San Diego after all, voted one of America's Best Cities for Weather!) and after checking into our Gaslamp District hotel--the Kimpton Solamar (they take dogs!), we wondered why there were hundreds upon hundreds of people out on the streets--and we quickly realized: A) it was a Friday night and B) there were some MAJAH San Diego Padres vs. San Francisco Giants baseball games happening at the nearby Petco Park so it was "Party Time" for lots of folks! But for us, this weekend was about Fashion Time...

First up, KUSI-TV Good Morning San Diego:


Ready for my San Diego Close Up: KUSI Fashion Guru Leonard Simpson talking "Red Carpet Gowns" with Nick Verreos, KUSI "Good Morning San Diego"

As the Official Fashion Spokesperson for the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, I was scheduled to be on KUSI News and their "Good Morning San Diego" program with anchor Kerri Lane and Fashion Expert Leonard Simpson to talk about Red Carpet fashion, the FABULOUS FIDM San Diego campus and the importance of DRAPING in creating red carpet-worthy gowns.

For the segment, I brought a FIDM Grad, Paul Hernandez (above) to show LIVE the "Art" of Draping and how one can drape on a form to then achieve the beginning of a red carpet-worthy gown. And in addition, I also brought some of my NIKOLAKI red carpet gowns to show the "finished" product, as it were. Two gorgeous models, 16-year-old (and six foot tall!) Makaela Maran, who hails from San Diego and my very own "NIKOLAKI Muse", Amanda Fields (who came down from LA) modeled in the segment.

Make and Hair Pre-Show Frenzy: model Makaela Maran patiently waits for her fitting while model Amanda Fields gets makeup and hair FAB ready with the help of Make-up artist James Overstreet (black shirt) and Hair stylist Brock Matthews (far right)--KUSI News San Diego Studios

Gown Fabulous: Models Makaela Maran (in turquoise blue NIKOLAKI silk ziberline scoop-necked gown with back cascade folds) and Amanda Fields in NIKOLAKI gold paillette over silk chiffon column gown with diagonal cowl drape--with Nick Verreos and Leonard Simpson--KUSI News "Good Morning San Diego" TV show

Pan Up and Down: Model Amanda Fields models a NIKOLAKI gold paillette silk chiffon column gown, while FIDM Grad Paul Hernanadez is draping LIVE behind her--KUSI News "Good Morning San Diego"

The segment went seamlessly (pardon the fashion terminology pun!), and was a big hit: FIDM Grad Paul Hernandez draped a beautiful gown IN SIX MINUTES (!) live as the segment was happening showing what students can learn from attending FIDM; I showed some of my NIKOLAKI red carpet gowns and we got to talk fab fashion. Oh, and best of all, Benny did not bark once--as we were filming! (he was hiding in the back with "Daddy David"). High Fashion Fives to EVERYONE!

Up Next--FIDM San Diego Open House:

It wasn't all "TV Time" while I was down in San Diego--It was also "FIDM Time" as I was invited to make a special visit to the great FIDM San Diego campus and their Open House that was happening this past weekend. Open House is a unique way for high school students--and post high school of course--and their mommies and daddies (if they want to come along naturally!) to tour the campus, meet the faculty, alumn, take workshops and generally get to know the College.

As an alumni--and Spokesperson to FIDM--I always love coming to these Open Houses, telling my "story" and meeting-and-greeting all the future Fashion Divas and Divos of tomorrow.

San Diego FIDM Open House Panel: Stylist Leslie Christen and Fashion Designer Nick Verreos

Joining me for this Open House, was the gorgeous (and very tall!) celebrity stylist and "Closet Organizer Empress" Leslie Christen, who happens to be an FIDM Grad, of course. We did a panel discussion at the FIDM Orange County Open House not too long ago and I fell in LOVE with her then--she's so articulate, so talented and well, I want to do EVERY Open House panel with her! Here are some photos from our panel discussion and presentation:

Nick Verreos, Leslie Christen and model Amanda Fields in NIKOLAKI gown

 Nick Verreos, Leslie Christen and model Amanda Fields in NIKOLAKI gown

Model Amanda Fields poses as Nick Verreos describes his NIKOLAKI gown

NIKOLAKI Fierce: model Amanda Fields in NIKOLAKI gowns--(L) Turquoise silk jersey draped gown with copper sequin waist detail; (R) gold paillette silk chiffon column gown with diagonal cowl drape detail and high side slit--FIDM San Diego Open House

Catwalk Kids: After the panel and presentation, I MC'ed an impromptu contest--I picked six Open House attendees and had a "FIDM San Diego Open House" Runway Walk-Off!!! Everyone was amazing! In fact, they were better than me!! (Note to self: I need to brush up on my runway walk darlings!)

Meet-and-Greet: And yes, after it was all over, Leslie and I had a great time signing FIDM tote bags and taking LOTS of Facebook and Twitter photos! It was another fun and very successful Open House--and trip to beautiful San Diego!

Click Below to Watch the KUSI News "Good Morning San Diego" Red Carpet Fashion, FIDM, Draping Segment:


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