Fashion Designer Nick Verreos with model Amanda Fields in his NIKOLAKI gown, inspired by Leonore Annenberg--Sunnylands Chic: the Fashions of Leonore Annenberg fashion event Sunnylands Rancho Mirage
On Wednesday, I went to the Desert--specifically, Rancho Mirage California. I was invited by Sunnylands and sponsored by the fabulous Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising/FIDM to create a gown inspired by Leonore Annenberg, wife of former Ambassador to the United Kingdom and publishing magnate and philanthropist, Walter Annenberg. I was honored to be amongst five other designers, Michael Costello, Anthony Franco, Paul Hernandez, Lloyd Klein and Fe Zandi, who also designed creations inspired by Mr. and/or Mrs. Annenberg.
My Inspiration: Nick Verreos with Leonore Annenberg's Oscar de la Renta apple green silk faille a-line batteau-neck gown
I was asked to pick a garment from Mrs. Annenberg's "closet" and create a contemporary design. Well, naturally, after seeing an apple green silk faille Oscar de la Renta gown, it was "done and done", as I say. Now, before I get to all the photos of the fabulous fashion event and my Leonore Annenberg-inspired NIKOLAKI gown, it's time to take in the AMAZING Sunnylands gardens--Take a look at these GLORIOUS pics taken by my NIKOLAKI design and life partner David Paul. We were UTTERLY jealous of how beautiful this California succulent garden was...breathtaking indeed:
Succulent Garden Envy--The gardens at Sunnylands, Rancho Mirage
Prior to the Fashion Show and Presentation:
TV Fab: Nick Verreos doing on-camera interviews for "Sunnylands Chic: the Fashions of Leonore Annenberg" fashion presentation Sunnylands Rancho Mirage
Paul Hernandez, FIDM alumn fashion designer:
Inspiration: Balmain Couture black "flamenco-sleeved" dress, from Mrs. Annenberg
Paul Hernandez design--worn by model Amanda Fields
My NIKOLAKI deisgn:
NIKOLAKI Gown Inspired by Leonore Annenberg--modeled by Amanda Fields--I was inspired by the color first and foremost--of the original Oscar de la Renta gown. Then, I referenced the a-line silhouette as well as the batteau (boat) neckline.
Model Amanda Fields in NIKOLAKI by Nick Verreos/David Paul silk duchesse gown
I also wanted to pay homage to the fabulous midcentury architecture of Sunnylands as well as the Hollywood Regency decors of the home--in terms of the structured shape, pleated front and arched back.
David Paul and Nick Verreos of NIKOLAKI--with model Amanda Fields--"Sunnylands Chic: the Fashions of Leonore Annenberg" fashion event, Rancho Mirage