FASHION REMEMBRANCE: HUBERT DE GIVENCHY

6C698FF1-A8C6-44DC-ADDC-E30AD447BB89A week after we learned of the death of the last of the great couturiers I feel everything has been written about this extraordinary creator by those who knew him, wrote about him and treasured his memory. His creativity was unparalleled not only in the world of fashion but also in his homes and his magnificent gardens.

I wanted to briefly talk about my memories of the few times I met him.  The first time was at the launch of his first cosmetic collection in 1966. It was always a ”contest” to see which of the major stores, usually the Speciality Stores….Saks Fifth Avenue, Bonwit Teller, I. Magnin (Neiman Marcus wasn’t in Chicago yet) and, of course, Marshall Field’s, would launch the newest, hottest fragrance.  I must say Saks saw it’s share of these prestigious events. Obviously a cosmetic collection by one of the worlds most illustrious designers was beyond exciting. We had a huge fashion press in Chicago at the time and they were all vying for exclusives. I didn’t then believe in exclusives if the story doesn’t run you are ”dead in the water”. Instead, we always had a press party for visiting designers in addition to a reception for clients usually to benefit a charity. All was set, caterers in place, champagne chilled and I had the tuxedoed wait staff with their champagne ladened silver trays lined up on either side of the cosmetic aisle ready for the guest of honor, M. Givenchy, his people, the President of Saks, Corporate Cosmetic VP’s and our guests. I ran up to my office to quickly change, I am in ”mid-change” when my walkie-talkie (this is before tech thingies!) is swawking….”M. Givenchy’s car has just pulled up”!  My office was on the fourth floor, I finished pulling on my clothes torn down the stairs and made it to the door to escort the entourage into the store and the reception. Whew!!  I have worked with many, many wonderful creators through the years and I can say he was one of the most gracious, charming of all.  He made you feel like you were the only person he wanted to talk to, if only for a brief moment in time. This cosmetic line was short lived and we had the privilege of a second launch several years later. AFD15AD3-A8F0-45DC-9E8C-A92419EFF774.jpegThis photo, now in the Nena Ivon Archives at Columbia College Chicago, hung on my office wall was from the first launch.  Unfortunately, like several other designer photos, the salutation has faded into oblivion over the years.

In M. Givenchy received the Designer of Excellence Award from the Costume Council of the Chicago History Museum at a sold-out black-tie gala held in the Museum in 1995 sponsored by Saks Fifth Avenue. The front and inside cover of the evening’s invitation, the evening was planned with the direction of M. Givenchy’s dear friend, Victor Skrebneski (holding my hand) who took the photo on the invitation and is seen here with M. Givenchy and Bonnie Deutsch, the President of the Costume Council at that time.  The evening was a roaring success monetarily and prestigiously   It was the talk of the town. All the guests were given a small ivory silk pocket square with the Givenchy signature and rolled hem in grey. All three images courtesy of the Nena Ivon Archives at Columbia College Chicago.

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A close up of another Skrebneski photo of one of my favorite Givenchy dresses….you by now know my love of lily of the valley…what could be more divine!!!!!  Photog found on Pinterest.

We all know of the deep friendship between Givenchy and Audrey Hepburn from the time she chose her garments for Sabrina through most of her many films, as well as her personal wardrobe.  One of my most favorite garments are in Charade, loved the film (what’s not to like) and the clothes are to die for…she seems to have a new outfit in every frame…each better than the last.

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My favorite Skrebneski photograph of a Givenchy gown. Everything is perfection….the composition, the lighting the incredible staircase, the floor and of course the gown…oh my the gown!!!!  Found on Pinterest.

Of course, a few suggestions for your fashion book library….

I have very fortunate to have worked with the creme de la creme of the fashion world….lucky, lucky me!!

CELEBRATIONS: THE LAKE FOREST SHOP TURNS 100!

ELLEN STIRLING, owner of The Lake Forest Shop

To say it’s unusual for an independent specialty store to celebrate 100 years in business is truly an understatement….but that is exactly what the charming Lake Forest Shop is doing this month! What is their secret, in my minds eye several things, first it’s owner, the granddaughter of the founder of the business and the incredible personal service she and her staff give their clients. Remember I was in retail for my entire career so I definitely have an opinion on retail survival, wouldn’t you agree! She upholds the tradition of “giving the customer what she wants” in spades.

Inside the Store

I had the privilege, upon my retirement, to work with Ellen and her team on several fashion events…they were incredible to work with, true professionals in every regard. Ellen fills her charming store with merchandise selected for her clients all of whom she knows intimately another key to the success of the store. I would suggest you go on line and read the story of the store as well see more photos, I’ve also included the press release information at the bottom of this post. https://www.lakeforestshop.com

The purpose of this post is to tell you about a very special event, yet another for the Costume Council of the Chicago History Museum, on Thursday, September 29th…I don’t know who is busier The Lake Forest Shop with their celebratory events or the CC with theirs!!!! By the way, the CC will be celebrating their own anniversary in 2024, their 50th! Stay tuned for all the special plans for that celebration. The Shop is known for its philanthropy and hosts many events annually. Here is the invitation for the CC event, for more information please contact Nell McKeown at mckeown@chicagohistory.org.

Meet the Costume Council members who will be modeling that evening…quite the bevy of beauties, I know you agree!

STUART DYER
KATHLEEN HAINES-FINLEY
SHERRY LEA HOLSON
COURTNEY HOPKINS
KAREN PETERS

You won’t want to miss this once in every 100 years event…but guess what you have many years to enjoy the personalized service, unique atmosphere, and great selections that are the trademarks of The Lake Forest Shop. Here is more detail information on the centennial http://thelakeforestshop.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/The-Lake-Forest-Shop-100th-Anniversary-Press-Release.pdf

FYI this is not a paid promotion….I don’t do paid pieces, I just like to give my readers information they will enjoy! Be sure to make your reservation now it will be such a delightful evening!

CELEBRATIONS: THE COSTUME COUNCIL OF THE CHICAGO HISTORY MUSEUM PRESENTS THE CHICAGO MEN’S FASHION AWARDS

It doesn’t seem possible that this event is celebrating it’s seventh year…but I know it will go on for many more years….we have so many fashionable men to honor!

Let me give you the deets of this years glamorous fun packed evening on Thursday, September 22nd. The evening will be filled with food, speciality drinks…think martinis and manhattans…music provided by the extraordinary DJ Eddie Johnson and, of course, FASHION, lots and lots of fashionable gentlemen not to mention all the guest’s finery!!!! It is definitely the place to see and be seen! Tickets are $100 per person and can be purchased at chicagohistory.org/cmfa2022 or by calling Nell McKeown, development events manager, at (312) 799-2112. A perfect way to celebrate the first day of Fall !

“We are thrilled to honor ten Chicagoans in an exciting celebration and ceremony at the Chicago History Museum. Our mission is to continue to build relationships in the community, and fundraise to support he 50,000 piece costume collection.” Maggie Morgan, President of the Costume Council

Michael Anderson
Vice President, External Engagement & Development,Chicago History Museum “Each year we look forward to the Chicago Men’s Fashion Awards to recognize outstanding men in Chicago with distinctive and unique style, while also raising funds for the preservation and presentation of the Museum costume collection.”
DAVID SANCHEZ
“Receiving the CMFA twice, once in 2018 and then in 2020, has meant the world to me as it combines two things I love: Chicago + Fashion! And being selected by such an honorable organizations is such an incredible distinction for me!”

Let’s look at this years award honorees. I can’t wait to see what they will be wearing as they arrive at the Museum in style in luxury cars graciously provided by Howard Orloff Imports.

Prosper Bambo
co-founder of “Congruent Space” boutique. The boutique marries high fashion and street wear design with thoughtful art.

Personal Style: Electic – Fashion Forward, Futuristic
Style InspirationL Walte Van Beirendonck, Contemporty Art, He likes edgy and modern trends


D’Ontace Keyes

ViiV Healthcare, works to drive the conversation and awareness for those affected and effected with AIDS

Personal Style: Minimalist with a twistStyle
Inspirations: Art – Making, Movement, presence and confidence
Danny Miller

Store Director, Max Mara Chicago

Personal Style: Sophisticated, Modern, Dapper, Chic and Sporty
Style Inspirtaion: Interior Design and fabrics, loves quality design and fashion that matches this lifestyle


Jackson Miranda

President of New Business for Mod Construction

Personal Style: Classic, Sporty, Streetwear
Style Inspiration: Pop Culture


David Murga
Owner, Galan Styling in the 900 N Michigan Shops.

Personal Style: Clean Tailoring, mixing texture and neutrals
Style Inspiration: Modern Architecture



Matthew Rodrigues,
Co-host for Chicago’s NBC 5 Today show

Personal Style: Modern, Clean Colorful, very bright, upscale JCREW looks
Style Inspiration: Classics meets Andy Warhol
Zak Rodriguez
Along with his brother, Brian Atwood, they are the designers and owners of the new designer shoe company, IL Fratellino

Personal Style: Refined Renegade, Classic men’s Fashion with rebellious twists like slim cuts, leather, denim, metallic and wild colors.
Style Inspiration: All things London, Slim Cut Suiting of the 60’s, Vivienne Westwood Punk – T shirt look.
Old School but modern

Carmen Rossi
President of 8 Hospitality owns the popular Chicago Restaurants of Hubbard Inn, Blue Violet, MASQ, Joy District and Old Ground Social. Just recently he started his fashion brand ” sur le lac”

Personal Style: Tailored suits, designer street wear, shorts and hoodies
Style Inspiration: 1920’s gangster, 1960’s rock n roll, 1990’s grunge and layered jewelry
Frank J Rubel III
Director of Investment Partnership for Kirkland & Ellis.

Personal Style: Glamour and sophistication, the right handbag completes an ensemble
Style Inspiration: Disco and my grandmother
Sam Sanchez

President of Third Coast Hospitality which owns and operates Moe’s Cantina, Tree House Chicago, Old Crow Smokehouse, Tunnel Chicago, and La Luna. Sam is the first Mexican-American to Chair the Illinois Restaurant Association.

Persona Style: Business Cowboy
Syle Inspriration: Mexican Heritage, Vibrant Colors

Here are the co-chairs, and their thoughts on the evening…they join the the Costume Council President, Maggie M. Morgan and the Event Committee: Amanda Bonnell, Pam Capitanini, Anne Forman, Courtney Hopkins, Peggy Martay, Jennifer Massarelli, Maggie M. Morgan, David Mordini, Karen Peters, John Rogers, David Sanchez, Aaron J. Shirley, and Karen Zupko

DUSTIN ERIKSTRUP
“Chicago is no second city when it comes to fashion and with this year’s honorees, it’s clear Chicago has its own unique perspective on elevated personal style. We’re excited to continue growing the event with new partners, fashionable guests and fantastic catering at the Chicago History Museum. Moreover, we’re delighted the event coincides with the Treasured Ten exhibit, featuring 10 pieces from Chicago-based black designers.”
ROSE KALLAS
“The Chicago Men’s Fashion Awards in a very Fashionable Evening with Men, Martininis and Manhattans!”

The evening’s MC is the popular WGN-TV personality, Glenn Marshall.

The fashionable food is provided by, The Italian Village Restaurant, Lirica, Moe’s Cantina, Molly’s Cupcakes and Sable at Navy Pier.

The evenings generous sponsors are: Executive Sponsors…Pam and Al Capitanini, Richard and Diane Weinberg Bespoke Sponsors…Lirica, Moe’s Cantina, Molly’s Cupcakes, Offshore, Orloff Range Rover / Jaguar / Volvo, John Rogers and Tye Radcliffe, Two Girls and a Hammer, 8 Hospitality Haberdashery Sponsors…ESQ Clothing, Sable Hotel BowTie Sponsor…10 MGMT Cufflink Sponsors…Michael Anderson, Dustin Erikstrup, Courtney W. Hopkins, jBlonde, Peggy Martay, David Mordini, Maggie M. Morgan, Kiran Patel, Karen Peters, The Shirley Family

I hope I’ve convinced you to attend this high powered evening…looks like a great fun event…don’t you want to be fashionable too, then…GET YOUR TICKET NOW!!!!!

FRIDAY MUSINGS: THE RANDOLPH STREET MARKET IS BACK

And just like that the uber popular and dearly missed RANDOLPH STREET MARKET is back and so are the monthly nenasnotes exclusive posts for their blog, https://www.randolphstreetmarket.com!

What can you expect from my posts, well I’ll give you some hints….I’ll feature some thoughts on fashion and why sustainability is so important..what better way to shop responsibly that by adding vintage to your wardrobe…we all like to look unique, ✔️the wonderful finds…from designer names to logo tees and, of course, every fabulous accessory you can think of can be found at these extraordinary phenomenal events!!!

My first post is on the RSM blog as I write this…what is its theme you might ask….BARBIE!!!!! This photo found on Pinterest photo credit unknown.

Here I am in a fabulous beaded necklace and my exquisite vintage embroidered quilted kimono at a Market!

Always exciting jewelry finds…..

We will explore the return of vinyl….for the nostalgic it never went away for others it’s a new collectible. I’m also thrilled that young people are now craving their grannies china, silver, glassware…it’s about time.

Thinking mid-century modern furniture, objects, ✔️they are there…no need to fret! Many other furniture styles await your perusal….

Textiles…most certainly…I have found so many one of a kind pieces from paisley pieces to needlework to quilts, both old and new…I have dibs on any crazy quilts you spot! A rug, why not, all sizes on display!

You will find ANYTHING you are looking for or had no idea you wanted. I’ll hopefully inspire you to find new collectibles, items to spice up your wardrobe, furniture, art, even vintage tools….the possibilities are endless. Here we go…..enjoy the ride!!!!

Sally Schwartz, the incredible entrepreneur and founder of RSM, et Moi together again and always!!!!!! This photo taken by the late, great Steve Starr at our first RSM together.

All photos taken by me for nenasnotes at past Randolph Street Markets, unless otherwise noted.

BOOKS…BOOKS…BOOKS: THE CANDY IN MY POCKET

When I was asked by a dear friend to read and review a book by one of her close friends I, of course, said it would be my pleasure. It put me in an awkward situation…what if I didn’t like it! You, dear followers, know I don’t do negative reviews and I only read what I like…rarely non-fiction…unless the subject is fashion or lifestyle for all my nenasnotes research and events. For pleasure I prefer historical fiction. Well, guess what…I loved this book! And it fits into my lifestyle genre perfectly. You see the author is a renowned interior decorator…the stars were now aligned! There is SO much information included (I’ll get to that shortly!) that I read it twice, I don’t remember doing that before. Its a story about a creator…a lesson in self awareness and self preservation….a travelogue….anything but your usual memoir, it’s a very powerful story.

I want to share the joie de vivre John has for survival…for life! Sharing his incredible story is a journey more fiction than fact but guess what…it is the story of his life and one we can all learn from. It’s inspirational….it’s inspiring…it should be depressing it is anything but…it’s a MUST read!!!!

The author, John Robert Wiltgen

Okay let’s get to the unbelievable story John tells us. The song, “I’m Still Here” from Follies should be the subtitle of this amazing life. John begins at the beginning…his childhood, filled with adventure which continues to this day. He was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at the age of 8 a fact he managed to keep hidden much of his life. As a child and a teenager he was quite rebellious, in a fun way, he started working while in high school at a paint company where he rose to an executive positions, still in his teens, he never told anyone his age…the writing was on the wall for his future career. Loved reading about his time at Ray Vogue College of Design, I worked with the students for many years and Mrs. Ray was a very unique personality! He lived in a Chicago suburb and, as an under age teen, loved disco dancing and would come to Chicago with his close friends to frequent the major discos such as FACES (I spent many an evening there!). He and his friends would practice for hours in his basement apartment in his parents home. They were so good they became the dance floor stars…in my minds eye I picture John Travolta!

Much later with friends and John Travolta!

The book doesn’t sugar coat (sorry, I shouldn’t mention sugar but it seemed appropriate!) when John describes his ongoing battle with the unbelievable complications of Type 1 Diabetes. He has had so many that it could read like a horror story, instead it is done in such a straightforward positive way that you know he hasn’t and won’t let anything stop him from living life fully! He presents his many, many, many challenges along side his interests, cars for an example, travel, the arts and his love for them, his philanthropic endeavors, his love for family and friends and, of course, his extraordinary interior design business. Here are a couple photos of his glorious designs…I could just do a post on photos from his extensive career. One of my favorite sections in the book and I do have many favorites is his time in Nigeria working with the King!

John’s worldwide interiors have been featured in many shelter magazines and numerous TV programs…awards were inevitable and more than well deserved.
He has always loved anything Egyptian…here the foyer from one of his own homes.
Known for his imaginative bathrooms and kitchens, this is one of my favorites.

Speaking of family…how many can say that all members of their family would be a match if you needed a kidney and your mother said, no, I’m donating mine…talk about a mother’s love! John’s support team through the years has sustained him along with his feeling of what’s next in life and always seeking a cure and an end to this life threatening disease. He not only takes his mother to Venice but also to The Academy Awards and many other special once in a lifetime events through the years.

John takes his Mother to one of the balls in Venice, one of his most favorite cities ….(John is in the gold mask)!

Along the way he has designed for celebrity clients, done show houses, model rooms….again the list goes on….and won zillions of awards not only for his designs but also for his philanthropy.

With Jane Seymour at a showing of her art which John hosted in Chicago..

In conclusion what are my take aways from this beautifully written story of a survivor…..so many things but let me narrow it down. John tackles each challenge in his fight against this dreadful disease…one day at a time, one horrific devastating outcome…one day at a time with grit, determination and, yes, humor. What should be a depressing book is anything but because of the author’s joie de vivre and positive attitude. You will learn so much about Type 1 Diabetes and be inspired to join the fight to find a cure as well as how to handle your own day to day issues. My last words….get the book, it will be published on June 22nd, you won’t be disappointed and by reading it you will be delighted to welcome John as a new fascinating multi-layered friend.

A quote from the book “Type 1 diabetes and I tackled one disaster after another. It can be a harsh lifestyle causing both physical and emotional devastation. Out of desperation, I embraced every new treatment hoping for even a shred of relief.”

From the book jacket.

BOOKS…BOOKS…BOOKS: nenasnotes The Fashion Book Club Begins Year Five!

A portion of my fashion book collection in my Book Nook…forgive me if I’ve posted this on my blog before!

I can’t quite believe that we are already half way through 2022…Happy June! Nor can I believe that this month we begin year five of nenasnotes The Fashion Book Club. In many ways it has changed from its concept, yet it remains the same in purpose! Once a month a fashion or lifestyle book is featured. Usually a new publication and usually I’m in conversation with the author. Until March 2020….a month none of us will forget, you may recall the pandemic descended upon us….we met as a group at an elegant private club in Chicago for Bubbles and Bites. The first half hour was a get together and then an hour of conversation followed by discussion and a Q & A. I always had that evenings and the next month’s book available for purchase thanks to my Independent Bookseller of choice The Book Stall in Winnetka https://www.thebookstall.com Beginning in March 2020 we went virtual and have continued virtually via zoom. We began with local attendees and now have guests from all over the States! I must admit the group has changed as some of the attendees miss the in person socialization of the events, but many have been with me since the beginning!

Some of the original group

Rana Lee, a very dear friend and one of my regular supporters, suggested I begin year five by sharing the list of our books and guest authors with you. Along with that I thought it would be fun to share a few photos of some of in person programs, again my apologies for repeat photos along with some covers.

With my dear friend, Annette Findling holding the brilliant Adrian Monograph.

The list…….*indicates conversation with the author

*LOU LOU AND YVES MAY 2018 WITH AUTHOR CHRISTOPHER PETKANAS

UNMISTAKABLY MACKIE JUNE 2018 (OUT OF PRINT)

*NORELL AUGUST 2018 WITH AUTHOR JEFFREY BANKS

*BONNIE CASHIN SEPTEMBER 2018 WITH AUTHOR STEPHANIE LAKE

DIOR AND HIS DECORATORS OCTOBER 2018

CAROLYNE ROEHM NOVEMBER 2018

*PINK DECEMBER 2018 WITH AUTHOR VALERIE STEELE

*PROUST’S DUCHESS FEBRUARY 2019 WITH AUTHOR CAROLINE WEBER

*DAWNRIDGE MARCH 2019 WITH AUTHOR HUTTON WILKINSON

YVES SAINT LAURENT BIO APRIL 2019

TONNE (GOODMAN) MAY 2019

*DAWN (MELLO) JUNE 2019 WITH AUTHOR JOHN TIFFANY

THE LAST COLLECTION JULY 2019 (NOVEL)

CAMP AUGUST 2019 METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART

*SKREBNESKI IN PERSON SEPTEMBER 2019 MOST SALES…AND MOST ATTENDEES A TRIBUTE TO THE BRILLIANT CREATOR AND DEAR FRIEND

*SUPREME MODELS MARCELLAS REYNOLDS IN PERSON OCTOBER 2019

With Marcellas with his first blockbuster book!

*SCRIPT FOR SCANDAL NOVEMBER 2019 WITH AUTHORS RENÉE PATRICK (NOVEL)

ADRIAN DECEMBER 2019

*RALPH LAUREN JANUARY 2020 ALAN FLUSSER ON PHONE

KAISER KARL FEBRUARY 2020

BALLERINA MARCH 2020 CANCELLED CORONA VIRUS

BILL CUNNINGHAM APRIL 2020 CANCELLED CORONA VIRUS RESCHEDULED

*THE WOMEN WHO REVOLUTIONIZED FASHION WITH PETRA SLINKARD MAY 2020 STARTED OUR VIRTUAL CONVERSATIONS

CHANEL’S RIVIERA JUNE 2020

BILL CUNNINGHAM BOOK AND DOC JULY 2020 WITH CO-HOST JEFFREY BANKS

ANDRÉ LEON TALLEY AUGUST 2020 WITH CO-HOST MARCELLAS REYNOLDS

ABOUT TIME ANDREW BOLTON MET PUBLICATION SEPTEMBER 2020

*HIGHJACKING THE RUNWAY WITH TERI AGINS OCTOBER 2020

*KENNETH WITH GUISEPPI LONGO NOVEMBER 2020

* THE WORLD OF FEDERICO FORQUET WITH HAMISH BOWLES DECEMBER 2020

LESAGE JANUARY 2021 THAMES & HUDSON RESCHEDULED DUE TO TECH ISSUES

CECIL BEATON BRIGHT YOUNG THINGS FEBRUARY 2021

*BES-BEN WITH ELIZABETH JACHIMOWICZ MARCH 2021 PARTNERING WITH THE COSTUME COUNCIL OF THE CHICAGO HISTORY MUSEUM

WHAT BECOMES A LEGEND MOST RICHARD AVEDON BIO APRIL 2021

*FASHION LIVES: FASHION ICONS 1 WITH FERN MALLIS MAY 2021

*NAEEN KHAN EMBELLISHED WITH NAEEN KHAN JUNE 2021

*FILM NOIR STYLE WITH KIMBERLY TUMBLER JULY 2021

*DRESS CODES WITH RICHARD THOMPSON FORD AUGUST 2021

VIVIANNE WESTWOOD: RUNWAY SEPTEMBER 2021

LESAGE OCTOBER 2021

*SUPREME ACTRESSES WITH MARCELLAS REYNOLDS NOVEMBER 2021

MISS DIOR DECEMBER 7, 2021

*CHRISTIAN DIOR DESIGNER OF DREAMS WITH MAUREN FOOTER DECEMBER 14, 2021

*PATRICK KELLY RUNWAY OF LOVE WITH GUEST PETRA SLINKARD JANUARY 25, 2022 EXHIBITION NOW AT THE PEABODY MUSEUM IN SALEM, MASSACHUSETTS

*HER NAME WAS CARRIE WITH JERRIE MARCUS SMITH FEBRUARY 22, 2022

*CHANEL AT THE RITZ (NOVEL) WITH GIOIA DILBERTO MARCH 22, 2022

EMPRESS OF FASHION DIANA VREELAND BIO APRIL 26, 2022

*HALSTON BY LESLEY FROWICK AND HALSTON BY FRED ROTTMAN MAY 25, 2022

I’m very excited for our June selections….I’m featuring two books with their authors….first up the brand new biography ANNA by Amy Odell who will join me in conversation on Tuesday, June 14th. The book is beyond fabulous and Amy’s attention to detail in the interviews and research is very insightful! The book has been getting rave reviews. Our evening has been in the works for months and I couldn’t be more eager to share it with everyone.

Fabulous cover!!!!

Then on Tuesday, June 28th Jeffrey Banks who joined us year one with his extraordinary monograph on Norman Norell, returns to talk about another of his books and one of his passions, TARTAN: Romancing The Plaid! Jeffrey has become a HUGE supporter of nenasnotes The Fashion Book and The Fashion Film Clubs not only attending each month but instrumental in suggesting many of our books and inviting the authors to join us…I am forever in his debt! It is a not to be missed evening.

You definitely can judge a book by its cover!
Jeffrey Banks et Moi at a Service Club of Chicago brunch. In the background a photo of the cover of his Norell book!

The upcoming monthly schedule will continue to feature the newest, and, in some instances past books worth exploring, on fashion and lifestyle topics. Some novels, some monographs, some biographies some academic in scope, but I think always thought provoking. I constantly try to get the authors via zoom but even when they aren’t present our discussions become fascinating and, I hope, informative. I very briefly mentioned the nenasnotes The Fashion Film Club. That also meets monthly on the second Tuesday…I try to tie in the film or documentary with that month’s book choice. If you are interested in joining the group please email me at nenasnotes1@gmail.com. I like to keep our group small but there is always room for a few more!!!!

Looking very serious while listing to a call with the author!!

TUESDAY MUSINGS: THE MET GALA AND COSTUME EXHIBITION 2022!

BLAKE LIVELY IN VERSACE WITH CHANGING COLOR TAFFETA TRAIN…EXQUISITELY PERFECT!
WITH RYAN REYNOLDS RESPLENDENT IN WHITE TIE, THEY WERE CO-CHAIRS OF THE GALA
ALICIA KEYS IN THE KING OF AMERICA DESIGNERS, RALPH LAUREN’S BLACK CAPE WITH NEW YORK SKYLINE AND BEDAZZLING PERFECT GOWN!
JUST BEYOND!!!!!!
AND A NON-PUNK BILLIE EILISH BEING VERY ADULT IN GUCCI
At Preview
Nena in her favorite place in the Met Museum….The American Wing! This peaceful place always welcomes me! This is the location of this year’s fascinating Costume Collection exhibition!

My favorite room in the Exhibition is the Frank Lloyd Room in the America Wing featuring a gathering of the most divine tableau of Charles James creations styled by the master Martin Scorsese! Bringing three American icons together in one knockout display!!

And then there are the Ann Lowe’s garments featured in the Renaissance Revival Room interpreted by Julie Dash. I’m particularly taken by the shadowy seamstresses clad in black tulle. Ann Lowe was a prominent Black designer known as the creator of Jacqueline Kennedy’s wedding gown. I featured her and her fascinating story in one of my nenasnotes The Fashion Master Classes on Black designers!
And Tom Ford’s chaotic feel of the iconic Battle of Versailles when the American Designers were dramatically presented and acknowledged as equals to the French designer establishment!

I think we need a field trip to NYC to take all this in…in person!!!!! The Met always stuns with its Costume Exhibitions and I particularly love them when they take us into the permanent collections, think Dangerous Liaisons, Goddess and one of my most favorite exhibitions ever…Anglomania! Until then read more on Vogue.com.