Fashion’s Night Out, Thursday night’s kickoff to New York Fashion Week, had the city’s top fashion destinations buzzing with parties galore — to say that it was a blast is seriously understating things. Here, my exploits for the evening.
I started off at Galleria Dallas, following my own FNO itinerary and checking out the happy hour at Banana Republic. Guess I can call it a “so-called” happy hour — the store’s version of happy meant 40 percent off most merchandise, which is great, but … where’s the OBS (open bar situation), yo? On to the next. My partier in crime Dimples and I wanted to find the Fashionistas’ champagne lounge.
At around the center of the first floor, we came upon a roped-off area packed with fashy types sipping bubbly from mini-bottles. We’d arrived just in time for a fashion show. A catwalk trail that spanned the entire mall winded right through the Fashionistas lounge. As Dimps and I mingled and visited with friends, the models sashayed by about a foot away from us — I never got this close to the runway at NYFW.
Unfortch, the bubbly was filling my tummy needlessly: I could be using that real estate for free cocktails at any number of the stores near us. So we hightailed it to Gucci, where for about half an hour, we swatted off salespeople wanting to sell to us, in favor of sipping a light, very citrusy lemon drop martini (right). After knocking it back, I was ready for snackage, so we went a few doors down to Ann Taylor. But, bummer! — they were only serving mini-cupcakes! I wanted a savory snack … time to move on.
The next hotspot we hit was the bumpin’ bash at Tootsie’s, hosted by Most Eligible Dallas stars Drew Ginsburg and Tara Harper. The energy was palpable here, as pretty people downed pink lemonade vodka cocktails and bopped to DJ dance music on the second floor of the Preston Road store. What seemed like a pretty nice snackie spread on the first floor was obliterated by the time we checked it out. Rats, guess you can’t be fashionably late for hors d’oeuvres, ha!
I ended up meeting Tara right as she stepped out of a little VIP corner the boutique set up for her; we chatted for a few minutes, and she even introduced me her reality co-star Courtney Kerr, who was rocking super-hot short-shorts and heel. Get it, get it, girl! Gotta say, the TV show doesn’t do Court justice — she’s way cuter in person, with a megawatt smile!
Pretty soon, Drew came along, and seeing as he’s one of my Twitter followers, I had to meet him! He was hella nice and pulled a photog over to snap our picture!
Soon, all three MED pals were hugging and mugging for several photos in VIP. Like most everyone else in attendance, they seemed to be having a genuinely great time. But, damn — this party was thinning out, and I suspected I knew were a lot of the guests were going. Highland Park Village, for its after-party.
Dimps and I fled, and after snagging a prime parking spot across the street from HP Village, we walked up to the fashion show stage right in front of Marquee Grill restaurant. But, nuts, we missed the show. Well, DAMN, if fashionably late doesn’t apply at a citywide fashion event, I can never win.
A little disappointed, I suggested Dimples and I enter Marquee, which was teeming with pretties. Honestly, I thought someone would turn us away at the door because of the crowd. But we found a cozy spot conveniently near the first-floor bar. I peeked around the corner into the dining room to see if Exec Chef Tre Wilcox was around, but I didn’t spot him. I did, however, run into Marquee’s super-kind manager, who treated us to our first savory snack: the house fries, dusted with a secret and potent spice blend. Just what the doctor ordered.
When the manager asked us, however, what we wanted to drink, I figured he meant cocktails, and I said, “something minty.” Dimples said, “I’ll take one, too.” Imagine our humored surprise when the manager returned with two pots filled with mint tea. HA, talk about a miscommunication. And talk about random — the spiced-fries/tea pairing was actually quite delicious. I’d totally get it again.
On our way out, we thanked the manager abundantly then made our way to the after-party at LAFCO NY. A tent right outside the fragrance and beauty boutique’s front entrance featured tables, a DJ and the open bar. Woop, woop! Inside, we sampled a lot of the bottled essences LAFCO is known for — a veritable feast for the nostrils.
Back outside, Dimps and I chatted long enough to shut the party tent down. Such fun! Can’t wait to rock the city at next year’s FNO.
Farah Fleurima writes about dining and fashion for The Dallas Diva.com.