In the Market Report: Ole!

China may be on everyone’s mind, thanks to the upcoming Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute exhibition “China: Through the Looking Glass” (and its attending high profile gala). But before traveling that Far East, many have seemingly taken a detour to Spain.

The cover story on today’s WWD, reads, Fall 2015 Trend: “Spanish Class” (“Graceful translations of aristocratic proportions gave a regal elegance to a number of fall collections”). It features a picture of a Simone Rocha ensemble from fall 2015 and a slideshow that includes designs by Thom Browne, Marni, Givenchy, Giles, and No.21.

Nina Delano, Eaddy Keirnen, Kylie Gattinella and Chloe Wynne
attend s dance  at the Spanish Court, The Frick

Last Thursday, many of the cities’ best dressed social swells showed their support of The Frick Museum (, showing up in well-dressed droves to attend its annual Young Fellows Spring Gala. The theme this year was “A Dance at the Spanish Court” sponsored by Lanvin, and naturally, many women opted to wear an Alber Elbaz design. But regardless of the exact label selected, what was obvious was that many really took the theme to heart: i.e., lots of lace, tassels, red roses (used as prints or as accessories), and romantic flamenco worthy gowns. Some even arrived wearing matador inspired ensembles or sporting mantilla like headpieces. Fans, the ‘party favors’ provided by Lanvin, were the accessory of the evening, and some women found inventive ways to use them, including putting them in one’s up do.

Performance by PS 87M students
(Photo: Julie Skarratt)

There were more fans (lace, florals, etc.) on display at the Grand Ballroom of the Plaza Hotel on Monday evening, when Ballet Hispanico (, the nation’s leading Latino dance organization for 44 years, held their 2015 Spring Gala. The festive and highly spirited event called for “festive black tie” and included cocktails, dinner, and dancing. There was live salsa music by Grupo Irek and performances by the Ballet Hispanico’s Company (and students of its school of dance and P.S. 87M). The evening celebrated “Puentes”, Ballet Hispanico’s educational programs, and honored three “extraordinary” individuals who, have, through their corporations, shown their unwavering commitment to support their Latino culture, and Ballet Hispanico.

Photo: Julie Skarratt

This year’s worthy honorees were Ballet Hispanico Board President and President and COO of Palladium Equity Partners David Pérez and Milena Alberti-Pérez, SVP and Head of Global Corporate Finance at Penguin Random House, who received the Civic Inspiration Award for their thirteen years of leadership and dedication to Ballet Hispanico.   Chair of Ballet Hispanico’s Leadership Council Ben Rodriguez-Cubeñas was the recipient of the Nuestra Inspiración Award for his “unwavering advocacy for New York City’s arts community and for his efforts as program director for the Rockefeller Brothers Fund”.

Jody Arnhold with Gala Honorees David Perez and Milena Alberti-Perez
and Alberti Family Members
Photo: Julie Skarratt)

Event Chairs were Jody & John Arnhold, Kate Lear & Jon LaPook, Marcos A. Rodriguez, and Greidys Gil & Luis Zaldivar. Event Vice Chairs were Herb Scannell and Charles Wortman & Laura Baldwin.  The Gala Honorary Committee was chaired by Ford Foundation President Darren Walker. Proceeds, which totaled just over $1M, will benefit the creation of new Company works, need-based financial aid and merit scholarships in the Ballet Hispanico School of Dance, and community arts education programs

Beyonce wearing Oscar de la Renta grown from resort 2013
in Vogue March 2013

And on April 16th, New Yorkers for Children (, which supports approximately 11,000 youth in foster care, will hold its 12th Annual Spring Dinner Dance- New Year’s in April: A Fool’s Fete, presented by Saks Fifth Avenue. The venue will be the Mandarin Oriental Hotel and this year, the festive and fashionable evening will include cocktails, dinner, dancing, a luxury silent auction and a special tribute to Oscar de la Renta, the beloved Board Member who passed away last year and a designer whose Spanish roots were always evident in his achingly feminine and romantic designs (as exemplified by his ongoing love affair with lace, threadwork embroidery, flowers, and exuberant color, among other things) .

 Balenciaga Spanish Master Exhibition

The Dominican Republic born fashion designer moved to Madrid at the age of 18, and almost immediately landed a coveted apprenticeship to Cristobal Balenciaga, a man who was inspired by his Spanish heritage his entire life. ‘Balenciaga: Spanish Master’, which ran from 11/2010 – 2/ 2011 at New York’s Queen Sofia Spanish Institute, had the distinction of being the first exhibition to “consider the impact of Spain’s culture, history and art on one of its greatest twentieth-century sons”. Curated by Hamish Bowles, it was actually conceived by Oscar de la Renta. (See our article)

I predict that many, if not most (or all) of those who attend A Fool’s Fete, will be wearing something by the beloved designer and the event promises to be a wonderful retrospective of his work, and a well-deserved tribute.

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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