We recently had the honour of helping to throw a very big birthday party for a truly special lady whose love of fashion comes second only to her love of family. We took this obsession with All Things Fashion and carried it through the evening…
The first hint of things to come was the invite. Caren Thomas of Bus Stop Design and I came up with the idea of a paper doll of our birthday girl and hired an illustrator, not only to draw the Guest of Honour, but to come up with outfits and combinations she would actually wear. Chanel, Pucci, Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Sonia Rykiel can all be found in the spot-on renderings.
The celebration was held at the Four Seasons Hotel and when Bill Fulghum (who designed the party as well as the florals) came back from Europe and said everything was purple that season, we knew what our main colour had to be. Peter Somers from Contemporary Furniture Rentals had sofas covered in purple upholstery just for the occasion and we all got a little carried away. I even bought ridiculously uncomfortable (but oh-so-chic) purple stilettos. Needless to say, it was a very purple night!
We staged a fashion show with clothing exclusively from Holt Renfrew. The lovely Erika Larva and Pauline Brown from Monarch Events Group produced the show and the hilarious Paul Venoit was our MC. The clothing was magnificent — there were 8 segments to the show and Pauline spent a full week at Holt’s pulling the clothes that were showcased. We had to hire round-the-clock security to guard the wares after the party until they could be returned to the store the next day. The furs, the purses, the accessories, the clothes were every girl’s (or shopaholic’s) fantasy. Sigh.
I had two favourite moments that evening: The first was at the beginning of the fashion show when Tom, the Doorman from Holt’s, came out with two male models, laden with dozens and dozens of the store’s eponymous hot pink shopping bags. He then proceeded to greet each model as she came on stage and take a shopping bag from her — just as he does to every customer who enters the store. The crowd cracked up! My second favourite moment came when our birthday girl first spotted her own granddaughter (one of three who were part of the show) when she first appeared amongst the professional models. She squeeled out loud, rushed the stage and announced to the crowd that that was her granddaughter. It was a classic moment — just one of many at a party that was so much fun to plan and so, so memorable for all that were there to celebrate the joy of family, friends and yes, fashion!
Photo credits: Leigh Tynan, Tynan Studio