I am having a fascinating adventure, I have a garment in the upcoming Hindman Fall Fashion auction on October 3rd! It’s my first auction…I’ve sold garments in the past with local resale stores and most of my special pieces are either in the Costume Collection of the Chicago History Museum or in the Fashion Study Collection at Columbia College Chicago. I asked Tanner Branson, the newly appointed Specialist, Head of Sale, Luxury Handbags & Couture and this is his first auction… (more on him later in this post) to look at the piece I thought would be a good fit to see if there was any interest in putting it in the sale. I got an immediate yes!
From that moment on learned the procedures of an auction….terms of the sale, contracts to be read and signed, confirmations sent via email. I also reviewed the description of the garment along with my brief bio…all that was left was to see the online catalog which went “live” this week….now on to the bidding…fingers crossed!
Here is the Carolina Herrera garment I wore for Mrs. Herrera’s appearance at Saks Fifth Avenue Chicago in 2007. It is quite the stunner and I only wore it that one time. Why in the world, you might ask, did I make the decision to send my fabulous piece to auction, quite simple, I no longer lead the lifestyle of going to charity luncheons, glamorous cocktail events, opening nights…well you get the picture! Having it hang in my closet when someone else can enjoy it…why not. I’ll have to do a good rummage to see what else might be of interest!
Here is the link and a description of the auction…
“Hindman’s Fall Fashion auction on October 3rd features over 250 lots of high fashion and luxury handbags from leading houses including Hermès, Chanel, and Louis Vuitton amongst others. Headlining the auction are three exceptional Hermès handbags, a Birkin 30 in ostrich, a Birkin 35 in Clemence calfskin, and a Kelly 28. The auction has a powerful collection of Hermès including a Snakes & Ladders game from 2013. Also featuring property from the personal wardrobe of Kay Krehbiel, the collection contains accessories by Judith Leiber and Hermès and a rare gown designed by Irish fashion designer Sybil Connolly. In addition, the auction also features examples of Haute Couture garments by Christian Dior, Chanel, and Givenchy dating from the 1950-1980s.”
A nenasnote I’ve known the founder, Leslie Hindman, for decades and could not be happier for her successes over the years…the company has grown into a Internationally respected auction house….here are further details…
“Hindman is a leading fine art auction house connecting cities nationwide to the global art market. With offices and salerooms throughout the country, Hindman conducts over 140 auctions annually in all major fine art and luxury collecting categories, while offering buyers and sellers an exceptional experience across multiple selling channels and price points.
Hindman’s team of experts is dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of ethics and integrity in the industry. Driven by this client-first approach, Hindman provides collectors, fiduciaries, and institutions with a comprehensive suite of services including auctions, appraisals, private sales, and art advisory.
Hindman was formed through the merger of two premier auction houses, Leslie Hindman Auctioneers (est. 1982) and Cowan’s Auctions (est. 1995). For over 40 years Hindman has built a reputation as a market leader by providing outstanding service and achieving record results. Hindman is headquartered in Chicago with 15 additional locations serving clients coast to coast.”
Now a bit about Tanner….I first met him as a student (one of mine!) when he attended Columbia College Chicago and during his time working in their Fashion Study Collection. We have become friends over the years. The history and preservation of clothing is, in my opinion, part of his DNA! I look forward to seeing what wonderful treasures he will find to bring to all of through Hindman!
From Tanner’s promotion announcement….
“As the Head of Sale of the Luxury Handbag & Accessories Department at Hindman, he will oversee the department’s four-yearly auctions, liaise with clients nationwide in evaluating their couture, and assist with appraisals. He will support Hindman Chicago’s headquarters and their well-established regional offices around the country to further develop the firm’s commitment to luxury goods.
His journey in the luxury market has taken him to many places. he brings with him a decade of experience working with iconic brands such as The Row and Brunello Cuccinellifor Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue. In curating his client’s personal and public wardrobes, he was given the opportunity to work with a rich collection of garments and expand his professional acumen. These experiences have honed his ability to understand the finer nuances of luxury and cater to the preferences of clients who appreciate the art of fashion.
Additionally, he am proud to be affiliated with various auxiliary boards, including the Costume Council of the Chicago History Museum. His academic background, which includes a bachelor’s degree in Fashion Business from Columbia College Chicago (with a personal focus on fashion and textile history), fuels his passion for preserving the stories held within each garment and accessory.
In keeping with Hindman’s commitment to exceptional service, he is excited to connect with clients across the country.”
As usual this is not a sponsored post…I don’t have sponsors…if interested in sponsorships contact me.
All photos, unless otherwise noted, courtesy of Hindman.
Something special today, dear readers….I’m profiling an extremely fascinating and unique fashion/lifestyle personality, David Nash! David is a rare bird due to the fact he wears many hats, writer, researcher, bon vivant, and for this post, MAJOR collector of James Galanos exquisite garments! And, for your information, I have not met David nor did I know about his clothing collection, which includes other designers as well, until I got the invitation to the May 4th Costume Council of the Chicago History Museum event….I was intrigued and knew he would be perfect to answer my nenasnotes Questionnaire…I wasn’t wrong! I’m sure I’ve mentioned my time with James Galanos when he appeared with his beyond magical garments at trunk shows at Saks Fifth Avenue, Chicago, if not I’ll do a post later. Jimmy was closer to Haute Couture than any other American designer….a true genius in creativity!
The following is David’s biography followed by the Questionnaire….I know you are going to enjoy it…so make yourself comfortable…..sit back pour yourself a glass of champagne or David’s drink of choice, iced Belvedere vodka…it is Friday afternoon after all….
“David Nash is a California-based journalist, brand writer and a regular contributor for Architectural Digest, C, ELLE Décor, Town & Countryand House Beautiful. He was a founding regional editor at DuJour, and his words have appeared in publications such as Veranda, Marie Claire,Carine Roitfeld’s CR Fashion Book, Cabana, TATLER and The London Telegraph. A collector of contemporary and vintage fashion and accessories, he has lent or donated pieces to institutions including The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute, Drexel University’s Fox Historic Costume Collection, Phoenix Art Museum, the FIDM Museum, and The Museum at FIT.”
“His archive of works by James Galanos—likely the largest private collection outside the personal wardrobe of philanthropist Iris Cantor—includes examples spanning five decades, from 1951 to 1998 when the designer closed his atelier. Nash’s decade-long friendship with Galanos was the impetus for starting the collection in an effort to help preservethe legacy of “America’s Couturier”. Seminal pieces from the archive were included in Phoenix Art Museum’s A Tribute to James Galanos in 2017, and James Galanos: Design Integrity the following year at Drexel’s Leonard Pearlstein Gallery.”
WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST JOB
If you’re talking my very first job right out of high school, it was as an Alley Coordinator at a Red Lobster—a front-of-the-house position that required pulling the live lobsters out of the lobby tank for the kitchen, dressing the plates, and bringing the foodout if a server was busy at another table. But, professionally, it was as the Vault Manager for LMNO Productions, a television production company in L.A. responsible for, among other reality-based shows, Cosby’s Kid’s Say the Darndest Things, Guinness World Records Primetime, and Behind Closed Doors with Joan Lunden. I oversaw all the footage library for the company. Definitely a humble beginning for someone who ended up working as one of Robert Evans’ last film development assistants at Paramount Pictures.
BRIEFLY DESCRIBE YOUR MOST RECENT OCCUPATION
I’m a freelance contributing writer and editor for a variety of publications including Architectural Digest, ELLE Décor, Town & Country, and C Magazine, among others. And, more regularly, I work full-time as a brand writer for startups, helping to develop tones of voice, brand guidelines, and streamline communications.
WHEN DID YOU DISCOVER YOUR FIRST IMPRESSION OF YOUR TALENT
As a writer—in 1986. When I was 11 years old, I went with my parents to see Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, and when we got home, I wrote out a [very] rudimentary version of the entire script by hand on folded sheets of typing paper and bound it like a book. I’ve always been fascinated with the art of storytelling.
WHEN DID YOU KNOW YOU HAD “MADE IT” EXPLAIN
To be honest, I’ve ‘made it’ and either given it up—or lost it—a few times. When I worked in entertainment in L.A., I ascended fairly quickly from production roles on television shows for Warner Bros. and Paramount to end up working for the infamous producer and former studio head, Bob Evans. That was major. After a little over a year with Bob, I left the industry and moved to San Francisco for something new. More recently, over the last seven years, I’ve experienced the ups and downs associated with the startup world—not every great idea succeeds, and layoffs happen. I’ve definitely lived a few lives and signed as many NDAs.
HOW DID YOUR ORIGINAL PASSION BRING YOU TO WHERE YOU ARE NOW
I’m a natural born researcher. I love digging into a subject and learning as much as possible. Often it leads down a series of rabbit holes that can produce so many other great ideas for [in my case] potential stories. For example, a French haute couture dress in my collection led me to write about a fascinating period in the life of Nicole Alphand, the wife of the French ambassador to the Unites States during the Kennedy administration. I contributed an excerpt of that longer tale for the recent March issue of Town & Country.
WHEN DID YOU START COLLECTING JAMES GALANOS GARMENTS….DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE(S) PIECE (CAN YOU SHARE A PHOTO OF IT)
My collecting began the year after I met Jimmy, I think, probably around 2007. The first piece I bought was a black coatdress from the mid-70s. I think I paid $50 for it at an auction. It’s not very remarkable, but I had to start somewhere.Jimmy was always forward thinking, and I never let him know I was collecting his work—he would have told me to spend my money on other things. Now I’ve amassed what is likely the largest collection of Galanos outside of a museum or Iris Cantor’s personal wardrobe.
There are favorites, of course. But I have an affinity for a particular evening dress from his spring/summer 1963 collection. It was featured full page—shot by Hiro—in Harper’s Bazaar that April with the following description: “Lightning strikes crepe. The column of crepe—cocoa brown asymmetrically printed with lightning streaks of pale beige and black—completely covering, supple, clinging. The long, slim sleeves, the narrowness of the whole covering, the most contemporary look possible.” Nobody writes descriptions like that anymore. It was also shot by Milton Green for the March 1, 1963 issue of LIFE, and by Melvin Sokolsky for another series of images for Bazaar. What’s described earlier as ‘lightning strikes’ was actually an homage to one of Jimmy’s favorite artists, Lucio Fontana. My dress, acquired from the estate of Edie Adams, was displayed at a Galanos tribute exhibition at Phoenix Art Museum in 2017. The only other version I know of is in the collection of The Met.
DO YOU PLAN TO WRITE A MONOGRAPH ON THIS UNIQUE CREATOR (WE NEED IT!)
From your mouth to God’s ear. I’ve been talking to some folks…
WHAT WOULD HAVE BEEN YOUR ALTERNATE CHOICE AS A CAREER….WAS THERE ONE
I often think about getting back into entertainment—television and film production or development. It was really my first love, but I couldn’t sit still that long back in my 20s. I needed to experience more, so when I mastered something, I moved on. Now I know what my passions, talents, and natural gifts are, so it’s about translating those things into whatever I do [next].
YOUR FAVORITE BOOK, MOVIE, LIST THE FOLLOWING, IN ORDER OF PREFERENCE…THEATER, BALLET, OPERA, SYMPHONY…TYPE OF MUSIC DO YOU LIKE TO LISTEN TO…FAVORITE RESTAURANT:
Favorite book: usually the one I just read—in this case Just Passing Through: A Seven-Decade Roman Holiday: The Diaries and Photographs of Milton Gendel; favorite movie: it’s a toss-up between CLUE, Dangerous Liaisons, Gosford Park, and Rear Window; favorite Broadway show: Sunset Boulevard; favorite opera: Puccini’s Madam Butterfly; least favorite opera: Nixon in China; favorite restaurants: Cotogna, Spruce, or Zuni Café (San Francisco), Racines (Paris), La Goulue, Balthazar, or Cipriani uptown (New York); favorite music: I’m all over the map, from classic and modern rock to showtunes—did I mention I worked with Michael Feinstein for a year?
My hobbies bleed into my work. I’m always on the hunt for great vintage fashion and couture to add to my collection—whether it’s a Galanos that’s illuded me or a piece by another designer; at some point the whole of my archives will be donated to various institutions. The hunt is so much fun! I really love to travel—particularly through Europe—and usually tie a story into a trip. I love to write in general, so often I’m just translating ideas into outlines for future articles. We—my partner, Doug, and I—also have an affinity for art and vintage cars.
YOUR HOME….MODERN, TRADITIONAL, ANTIQUES (WHAT ERA) ECLECTIC…
We have a 1931 Tudor in the East Bay, across the bridge from San Francisco, and it’s filled with a mix of antique, contemporary, and modern pieces. The walls are covered with favorite artworks, from a surrealist oil on canvas by Italian artist Tomea Fiorenzo that was exhibited at the 1942 Venice Biennale and a largescale painting of finches by pop-artist Hunt Slonemto photographs by Slim Aarons and contemporary visual artist Danielle Mourning—and everything in between. But the pièce de resistance is the backyard, where we can spend hours and hours.
WHO WOULD YOU HAVE AT YOUR FANTASY DINNER (LIVING OR DEAD AND BE SURE TO INCLUDE YOURSELF!) AND WHAT WOULD YOU SERVE (10-12 GUESTS):
When you’ve actually been at a dinner like this—with all living guests [at the time]—that included Jane Fonda, David Hockney, Nolan Miller, Michael Feinstein, Fayard Nicholas, Doris Raymond, and Angie Dickinson, it’s hard to consider a ‘fantasy’gathering. Talk about a mixed bag! But here you go, in no particular order: Nicole Alphand, Meryl Streep, Little Edie Beale, James Galanos (of course), Truman Capote, Lynn Wyatt, Montgomery Clift, artist Mark Bradford, Stevie Nicks, and The Duke and Duchess of Windsor. Right now, I’m craving coastal Italian…so the menu would definitely include seafood and pasta.
FAVORITE VACATION SPOT VISITED AND/OR ON YOUR GO TO LIST
I love Corsica—Bonifacio in particular, and the all-suite hotel Cala di Greco. It’s all about relaxing and the seafood, and the incredible rosé produced there. Traveling through France in general—from Paris to Provence to the Côte d’Azur (Nice and Cannes mostly). Salers in the Cantal area is also incredible and the cheeses are amazing; we have friends who have a farmhouse there. Mexico City is also on the list—the food is incredible (as are the mezcals). We were recently in Malta for a wedding and that was a pretty spectacular place to spend a few days. Okay, one more…St. Petersburg, Russia, is one of the most beautiful places in the entire world. Looking out on the Bay of Finland from Peterhof Palace—just magical. The water is a color of blue like you’ve never seen. I was there with Jimmy in 2007.
WHAT DO YOU ENJOY DOING MOST IN YOUR FREE TIME
As the New York Times bestselling author Austin Kleon said, “Creative people need time to just sit around and do nothing.” My mind is always working, so sitting in the backyard feeding the squirrels or watching an old movie fort the 100th time sounds like heaven. But those distraction only lasts so long.
FAVORITE WORK OF PUBLIC ART:
If we can consider architecture a form of public art, then I’d have to say the world is filled with immense beauty right in plain sight. I can stroll the streets of New Orleans or sit outside a café in Paris and look at buildings for hours. Have you ever really looked at the details of a Pre-war apartment building in New York? They’re gloriously strong and everlasting.
A FAVORITE RECIPE
Take 2.5 ounces of Belvedere vodka and shake it with ice—in a vintage silver cocktail shaker—until your arm hurts. Strain the vodka into a chilled coupe and garnish with a lemon twist. Drink and repeat.
HOW WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE REMEMBERED
The things I’ve written will live forever in one form or another—thanks to the internet—and there are articles that I’m really proud of and hope are read and referenced long after I’m gone. But, in the end, it’s all about the good you’ve done and how you treated people. I think there’s an episode of Designing Women in which Dixie Carter’s character, Julia, says as much in a speech to Delta Burke’s character, Suzanne.
David, a million thanks for sharing so much of your life with us. You are a unique combination of researcher, writer and collector. To hear more about David’s Galanos collection be sure to get your ticket to the May 4th Costume Council of the Chicago History Museum event when he will be in conversation with Steven Stolman. For further information or to purchase tickets, please visit chicagohistory.org/galanos or contact Nell McKeown, development events manager, at email@example.com or 312-799-2112.
All photos from David Nash’s collections unless otherwise noted.
Watch for my blog post on David Nash who has been kind to answer my nenasnotes questionnaire. I did a post with Steven Stolman on January 28, 2022, please go to my archives to read his fascinating story!
I have been collecting fashion books since high school so needless to say a very long time! I followed fashion magazines long before that…I come from a family of magazine lovers, as well as major bibliophiles! so no surprise. This is the first fashion book I got, I decided to go downtown after school, actually Michigan Avenue, to my favorite bookseller at the time, Main Street Book Store, mid-1950’s, to get the book. I talked Mom into joining me and we could then meet Daddy for supper at one of our favorite restaurants, A Bit Of Sweden….their smorgasbord was perfection….loved it.
Since that time, both establishments are long gone, my fashion library has grown to around 1000 tomes! I have most of them listed on the fabulous site, LibraryThing http://www.librarything.com they also have an app. I still have many more to add. It’s truly a full time job! As you know I have hosted a monthly nenasnotes The Fashion Book Club since 2018, you do the math as to how many I’ve added in 5 1/2 years! I do add those as I get them and have them all together. Just a note on how I house these books…I have them either by designer…think Chanel, Dior, Yves Saint Laurent…or by theme such as Hollywood Costumes, French Designers, American Designers, Monographs, Novels, Biographies, Autobiographies, Anthologies…you get the idea. I have many first editions, many signed and many personalized. One of my treasures is a Godey’s Lady’s Book given to me by a dear friend…I found it in a vintage bookstore in Stratford, Canada.
Everywhere I go I seek out bookstores or antique shops and have found lots of treasures. I have also found several at our own Randolph Street Market (it’s celebrating its 20th Anniversary this year at its season opening May 27th and 28th). https://www.randolphstreetmarket.com
I’m hoping to house the collection at the Chicago History Museum in their research center. I want to leave it as a collection…if I find they aren’t interested I’ll seek another institution. Perhaps a fashion school. Need to do more research on that.
Now let’s look at what’s ahead for nenasnotes The Fashion Book Club…as usual, for most months, I’ll be in conversation with the authors. All via zoom.
JULY 2023 TWO BOOKS NOT WITH AUTHORS
All the nenasnotes The Fashion Book Club selections are available at my partner Independent Bookseller https://www.thebookstall.com I’m always open to book suggestions and be sure to stay tuned for upcoming reviews on these selections….happy fashionable reading!!!!!
I want to continue celebrating Black History Month highlighting books on Black fashion designers and influencers. I know I am only touching the surface and encourage you to seek out these remarkable stories, interest you to read these books, add them to your expanding fashion library and most importantly enrich your knowledge of many unsung talents and their fascinating stories. I’m also including notable Black authors whose books explore the intricate fashion business….there will will be a Part 3. Do share other books that I’m not including. First, let’s acknowledge more designers…
And, of course, the iconic Virgil Abloh’s books…Figures of Speech exhibition, mounted by Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art is traveling to the Brooklyn Museum from July 1, 2022 through January 29, 2023….an exciting unique exhibition, not to be missed! Three Abloh books (and I’m sure more to come)! A talent whose legacy will live on with the designers he mentored.
I think I’ll stop here…so many more to delve into…stay tuned for Part 3!