Couture Council Annual Summer Party

Where Oh, ‘Wear’ Did The Summer Go?

Anne Koch
(All photos courtesy of Caroline Torem Craig )

One of the best things about attending fashion related events, is seeing people you haven’t seen for months (if not years), and catching up with old friends (a bi-product of having been in the industry for SO MANY YEARS – LOL). Such was the case at Wednesday evening’s well attended and lively Annual Summer Party, given by The Couture Council of the Museum at FIT in celebration of the upcoming September Awards Luncheon honoring Valentino.

Tziporah Salamon & Louise Doktor

FYI, it really should be called “The Annual End of Summer Party” because it is just a few weeks before Labor Day and the start of New York Fashion Week, signaling the unofficial end of summer and beginning of fall. I was glad I had a chance to chat with Joan Kaner (looking relaxed and fabulous in Ralph Rucci black tunic and pants), Patricia Mears (in an elegant Jean Yu linen dress), Cathy Hardwick (in chic white jacket over black pants), not to mention Peter Dubaux, Sara and Richard Vass, Michael Gross and Lauren Day Roberts, who I went to summer camp with light years ago and the fact that she immediately recognized me was pretty amazing in itself.

Bill Cunningham was there shooting for his columns. Seems Bill is beginning to enter the digital age. In addition to his trusty old film camera, he was using (as backup he said) a new digital style camera! And speaking of photographers, we ran into Roxanne Lowit the famous backstage and celebrity photographer whose latest book “Backstage Dior” has sold out its first printing.

Man in leopard pants

Of course, another element involved in attending any fashion shindig, is seeing the fashion on display. Last night was casual and laid back, there were the usual chic if not a bit boring, little black (and blue) dresses, smatterings of leopard and snakeskin prints, and lace (fashion’s new favorite fabric – looking especially fresh in ivory or white incarnations. But for me, it was those guests who were creative and seemed to factor in the time of the year and the location – The Boathouse in Central Park chosen for its accommodating size, it’s indoor and outdoor space, and of course, the water views which stood out. I mean really, what do you think of when you say summer and boathouse? Straw boaters, graphic nautical inspired stripes, preppy perfect blazers, polos, and shorts of course. And all the above were on display, worn by both men and women alike.

Montgomery Frazier & Kathie Dolgin

Best ‘boater of the evening’ goes to artist Anne Koch, who paired her small one, tilted just ‘so’, with a vintage ivory lace top, ivory Issey Miyake skirt, pale straw clutch and round sunglasses. Alexandra Lebenthal, a Couture Council Host committee member, managed to turn a sprained ankle into a breezy ‘fashion moment’ opting for crisp white shorts, white shirt, a yellow satin J. Crew blazer, and a matching hued satin scarf tied over her brace. The hands down best dressed ‘couple’ (I don’t even know if they came together but they were being photographed together) was Tziporah Salamon (a vision in vintage black and white stripes and graphic patterns, down to her turban and J. Crew espadrilles), and Alan Manson, in a dark navy and white striped blazer and black and white saddle shoes.

Twice the fun!

But my vote as most whimsically dressed has to go to jewelry designer Diana Brussard, who opted for Peter Hidalgo’s little white sleeveless dress, printed with the oversized photo image of a mosquito. The annoying little critters were certainly biting last night, especially if you were one of those enjoying cocktails and hors oeuvres on the outdoor deck (there was an open bar and Grey Goose Vodka was one of the sponsors). And coincidentally, when I left, I shared a complimentary shuttle bus to 5th Avenue with a woman who was complaining that she had just gotten the biggest mosquito bite of her life. Talk about life imitating art.

– Marilyn Kirschner

Marilyn Kirschner

I am a long time fashion editor with 40+ years of experience. As senior market of Harper's Bazaar for 21 years I met and worked with every major fashion designer in the world and covered all of the collections in Paris, London, Milan and New York. I was responsible for overall content, finding and pulling in the best clothes out there, and for formulating ideas and stories.

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