Four years ago, Brizo began sponsoring fashion designer Jason Wu's runway shows. You may wonder what the connection is, but once you peruse the Brizo catalog you immediately understand their fixtures are fashion for your home. After a day of immersion in the magical Brizo world, we were whisked off Wu's Fall 2011 show (that's my official invitation above).
We were swiftly ushered to our seats and lights dimmed. The music started pumping and 37 of the most beautiful ensembles glided down a runway made of Baroque mirrors. Wu's collection was inspired by photographs from a Robert Polidori book on the 25-year restoration of Versailles, and opulence was in full effect.
15 different types of lace were deconstructed and then reassembled on the most exquisitely tailored jackets, skirts, blouses, and dresses. I don't know what thrilled me more - the clothing or seeing some of the world's top models in the flesh. Joan Smalls (above), who recently signed an exclusive Estee Lauder contract, wore my favorite look of the collection. (I'm a hardcore fashion nerd.)
critics certainly did:
• "It has been a while since designers have gone in for such obvious opulence, and Mr. Wu wasn’t holding back on the extravagance ... [The collection] was inspired by Robert Polidori’s book that documented the restoration of Versailles over a period of 25 years. It was that grand." [NYT/On the Runway]
• "The clothes are legitimately living up to his outsized reputation. What was noteworthy about this outing was how consistent it was, and how well his 'baroque meets sportswear' message held together from beginning to end ... a hit." [Style.com]
• "[Wu] work[ed] the evolving grandeur motif by infusing appealing flourishes into his very pretty clothes ... [He] scored big." [WWD]
• "This collection marked a return to Wu's trademark style, that of graceful urbanity and shameless elegance ... It was a collection filled with show-stoppers — a reconnecting with his signature tone." [Vogue U.K.]
• "The first two looks of Wu's show are beautiful enough to be framed ... a delicious combination of edge, tailoring, and chic to the extreme." [Fashion Week Daily]
photo was snapped and I floated back to my group. Deliriously happy does not begin to describe my state of mind.
On the way out, I spied supermodel Karlie Kloss.
(The handsome fellow with the clean pate is Brian Nobbe, Marketing Director of Brizo.)
Girlfriend wore the second-to-last ensemble and ATE. THE. RUNWAY.
A close-up of the runway.
Design Manifest, Robin of A Bird in the Hand, Leigh of Marvelous Kiddo with a kiddo, yours truly, and Alicia of Alicia B. Designs. Alexis of The Studioist also joined us but asked to be left out of photos due to job/privacy concerns. My new best friend Nick Lovelady of Cupboards tagged along to chaperon (more on him later.) I had the most amazing time with these most amazing ladies and my only regret is how brief our time together was.
John Robshaw, so when an invitation to a store event where he was appearing popped up in my email Wednesday I about passed out. Robshaw has teamed with Lucky Brand for a collection of clothing featuring his signature bohemian prints. I was the first one in (of course) and nearly pounced on the poor man. To his credit he looked only slightly scared as I blathered on about everything of his I own, the blog, and how I want to bear his children. Thanks, John, for being a good sport. Also, a note to self - do not wear 15 layers of clothing when having a photo taken with your design idol no matter how cold it is outside. And put on some make-up.
A close-up of the Robshaw display.
My good friend Molly Chase, an interior designer in NYC and budding novelist, had met up with me and was kind enough to indulge my fan-geek meeting with Robshaw. She and I had brunch and enjoyed some shopping before I had to jet off.
The highlight of my trip, besides meeting Brizo's incredible team and Iris Apfel and John Robshaw, was getting to know Nick Lovelady of Cupboards and Michelle Carangi (left) of Holley & Gill. Have you ever met someone and realized you've been friends all your life? That's how it is with Michelle and Nick, my sister and brother from other mothers. And the beautiful lady next to Michelle is Celine Kwok, an immensely talented product designer with Brizo.
My thanks to Brizo for introducing me to 19 of the most fantastic people I've ever had the pleasure of meeting and for giving us a peek behind the Emerald Curtain of the beauty your team creates.
FTC fine print: Brizo paid for my airfare and travel expenses for this trip.