Monday, August 30, 2010

Front Row at Vogue Fashion Week in Bellevue

For the past few years, a friend and I have been attending fashion week in Bellevue.
We buy All Access tickets to get goodies such as front row seats or valet parking (one year we lost our car! It was a nightmare so valet parking was an awesome perk.)  The Bellevue Collection and various partners get together to put on a benefit fashion show, announcing the beginning of Fall/Winter Fashion.  The benefit was for the Moyer Foundation!  What a deal!  We get to have a girl's night out, an incredible fashion show, and help out children.

My friend and I pre-funked the show with a trip to Neiman Marcus at The Bravern.  It's an hour plus drive to Bellevue from where we live.  Since this is the only Neiman Marcus in Washington state, I was going to take advantage of our drive to refill my Meteorites compact and get a Fresh Soy Cleanser.  We also stopped at one of my favorite cupcake bakeries, Trophy Cupcakes for a before fashion show treat.  Check out the lemon cupcake!  It was a delicious way to start the adventure.  

The Hyatt Regency was our host for the second year running.  A beautiful hotel with gorgeous modern sculptures and a lush interior, it is the perfect backdrop for Fashion Week. Complimentary valet parking was included on the ticket price this year.  I was excited to take advantage of this deal because of our SNAFU last year.  We entered right into this room from the side street where the friendly valets took my Miata.

Here I am in front of the Vogue/Bellevue Collection Fashion Week sign.  I wish you could see my shoes.  They were glorious J. Renee's that I bought for a wedding and wore that evening too.  My shirt is my favorite, bought at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, it is a gorgeous pink that hovers between pink and taupe depending on what you pair it with.  I happened to put it with the dark olive Halogen sweater which sounds odd but worked (I had a Tim Gunn moment in my closet prior to coming to the show).


 The staff of the Hyatt and the Bellevue collection welcomed us with drinks and hors d'oevres.  Special for the night, the bar offered a drink titled Sexy Stiletto, a mixture of champagne and possibly pineapple and grapefruit juice with a raspberry garnish.  It was delicious.  While we wait for the doors to open, waiters took around trays of small bites.  There was mahi mahi on a wonton chip (not my favorite btw because of it's lack of seasoning), veggie quesadillas (too spicy), chicken wraps (delicious!), onion quiche (also yummy).  One waitress who was responsible for the tomato artichoke cups only went down one side of the room.  Somehow we did get a taste of that offering and it was great but after that we couldn't get her attention to get another one! 

Anne Vincent, Vogue
Now to get to the good stuff, the clothes!  The show was divided into themes; Fur and Feathers, Under Wraps (coats for Washingtonians - LOL - We are always on the hunt for fashionable outerwear!), American Sportswear, Urban Luxe, Animal Magnetism, Sweater Girls, and A Night on the Town.  The show was opened by the lovely Anne Vincent of Vogue.  I have a few pictures of her but they are blurry.  She was wearing a gorgeous skirt of deep blue feathers.  I'll include it anyway but here's my disclaimer.  I was using my I-phone for pictures which took some getting used to and didn't always take the greatest pics.  So in small form, they look ok but larger not so great.  However, check out the blue on that was to-die-for!

From Nordstrom - Fur
The great clothes in the show were provided by the shops in the Bellevue Collection; Nordstrom, Banana Republic, Macy's, White House/Black Market, Boss Hugo Boss, Vince, Aritzia, Ann Taylor, and more. I enjoyed the Fur and Feathers theme more than I thought I would.  It's so easy to go wrong with both elements.  However, the stylists pulled it together with thoughtful consideration to this fact.  You can see in the picture of one of my favorite outfits from the fur/feathers theme that the Joie fur vest layered with a Michael Stars sweater and lace leggings has a sense of urbanity and modernity that made the whole look work.

Some of the name brands/designers work featured in the show were Haute Hippie, Joie, Diane Von Furstenberg, Rachel Roy Rachel.  I liked the Kate Spade jeweled cardigan.  My picture (in the slide show) makes it look yellow but it's a lovely bright pistachio.  Another favorite item was actually the tights, especially the orange ones.  They added a great punch of color to the outfits.  Unfortunately, the accessories weren't listed but there were some fantastic shoes, handbags, headbands, and jewelry.  I loved the rhinestone ball necklace featured with a few outfits but couldn't get a clear picture of it (seriously that is the story of my life.).  The menswear was to drool for with suits by Boss Hugo Boss.  The models themselves made nice eye candy too!  I loved everything from Banana Republic (as per my usual modus operandi).  

Each guest received a swag bag with great items such as OPI nail polish, a cosmetics bag from the Bellevue Collection, samples from Sephora (who donated make-up stylists for the show), Obadiah Salon (hair stylists), and other assorted delights.  Plus there were plenty of coupons, gift cards, and shopping treats to encourage a whirlwind of shopping madness in the mall afterwards.  I took advantage of the Banana Republic coupon to buy a cardigan.  Inside the mall, after the show, the models posed on picture frame stands to get a closer look at the clothes.  You will see a picture of this at the end of my slide show.  But the best part besides the shopping was the dessert spread and free goodies from some of the participating stores such as Crabtree and Evelyn where we scored a little gift bag of samples.  The dessert spread in the mall consisted of the most delicious shortbread thumbprint cookies with fruit (one was mango and I don't know what the other was) sprinkled with sugared rose petals.  I could have eaten about a dozen of these but restrained myself to trying the two flavors.  In addition to these goodies, Z'Tejas and PinkaBella offered samples upstairs.  There were more samples along the way such as Cinnabon but we didn't make it to those.

At the end of our whirlwind night, we walked back to the Hyatt Regency and found our car through the helpful services of the valets.  A note to the Bellevue Collection staff though - a paper voucher would have assisted the valets at the desk in retrieving our car.  They wanted to charge us unless we could show proof that we'd been at the show.  I showed them my arm band but the gentleman was reluctant to take it.  A minor hiccup in the process though.

Check out my next post for the slide show of my pics.  I am struggling with a soundtrack for the movie of the Fashion Show so today it's basically an add your own soundtrack moment.  Have a fashionable day!  And enjoy!

My Favorite Kate Spade in the Sweater Girls Theme

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