She's maneuvering the world of high fashion using instinct, experience and a WILD and ROWDY past!
It’s wedding season. And thank you Jesus, Buddha, Eshu, and Muhammad, many people are doing it outdoors and insisting that guests come vaccinated and boosted. I hopped a private jet with Issa and the INSECURE cast (those who were invited) for Jay Ellis’ wedding weekend in Tuscany. The guests were asked to wear earth tones to the ceremony and while I usually blow off those types of requests and wear whatever color I fucking want, my girlie-girl dress by Giambattista Valli, a sweet green, blue and lavender flowery pattern, was sheer enough for lots of earthy brown skin to peek through. Some say I almost upstaged the bride but I call it my contribution to the theme.
Wristlet by Bottega Veneta
COVID cases are up again, dammit. And I’ve been so good about staying safe, uber-picky about which events to attend. It’s all about being outdoors for me this summer and last weekend was a big outdoor weekend! At the Gucci soiree, we roamed the grounds of stylist Elizabeth Saltzman’s spread in East Hampton like happy cattle. Glad I wore wedgies. I caught up with ex-models Christy Turlington and Bethann, designer Rachel Zoe and Spike Lee’s family. The whole crew. His son Jackson is about a foot taller but I swear, Tonya may have carried him and pushed him out but he’s all Spike, through and through. The next day I hauled myself out to Christian Louboutin’s luncheon on the deck of Duryea’s in Montauk. It was a very different crowd, more stuffy than cool, but the ouzo and octopus was crazy good and I made a few new contacts across the Pond. What a lovely way to do business on a warm, Sunday afternoon.
Winona is wearing Duro Olowu
Well, another Met Gala is said and done. The theme this year? Gilded Glamour. A salute to the Gilded Age, late nineteenth century fashion viewed through a modern lens. Many said fuck the theme and as usual they did their own thing. Models Naomi, Shalom Harlow and the Hadid girls did not obey. Others like Janelle Monae, Blake Lively and Cardi B—a killer in Versace—mixed it up. Contemporary with a bit of throwback. And still others, like Sarah Jessica Parker, Adwoa Aboah, Kacey Musgraves and Lizzo’s magnificent opera coat (just the coat okay?) got the assignment and carried it out. I did too. That’s all a part of the fun for me.
I wasn’t feeling the Gilded Age, though. Not at all. But when I saw this original Charles Worth gown from 1898, so simple and luxurious, I knew it was the one.
Now, I couldn’t pull a Kim Kardashian and rip the dress right off of the exhibit mannequin (does anyone honestly believe that bullshit story?) but I did employ Belle’s dressmaker to whip up a replica in deep red satin and a few feet of extra train because you know, you can’t have too much train at the Gala. Finishing with a pair of burgundy Jimmy Choos, a vintage wrap from Valentino and jewels from Harry Winston, tell me whaddaya think? Can you see me as some railroad baron’s dusky-hued mistress from 1898?
2 years in masks! Who could have imagined it? But like the dinosaurs of Jurassic Park, Fashion Week continues to find a way not only to survive but to evolve. Winona, Inc. models have returned to NYC and they’re strutting it out on catwalks from Brooklyn to the Bronx, while video watch parties at the agency are becoming the hot new ticket. Long live Fashion Week!
On the final day of Fashion Week, we held a day long open house at WINONA, INC. for our fully vaccinated comrades. Most of the fashion shows were digital so we put up a movie screen in the upstairs reception area, served wine and snacks, and ran a continuous loop all day. Wouldn’t you know, word spread? Our open house became a hot little ticket! Models drifted in and out, industry folk dropped by to gossip and schmooze—I think this might become a new Fashion Week thing! So until next time…SMOOCHES!
On Tuesday, Marissa Wilson kicked things off at Spring Studios. Gabriele Hearst took us out to Brooklyn for her show at noon. Bibhu Mohapatra brought us back to Spring Studios and I got a chance to chat with Bethann for a minute. That’s always cool. Peter Do presented at Genesis House on 10th Avenue at 3 and then a late lunch at the agency before the Michael Kors Collection at Terminal 5 on West 56th Street with Brooke Shields, Blake Lively and Ariana DeBose in the house. I can’t believe Fashion Week is almost over. Just when I’m catching my second wind. Day Six.
Winona is wearing Balmain.
Seeing Mrs. H herself at the Carolina Herrera show was a nice way to start the day. So few of the OG’s are still with us. We lined up like little kids to say hello. Red roses were offered at the Coach show on Pier 36 and Bevza was right behind that. Tory Burch was in Midtown, Greedilious by Tilda presented at Spring Studios and LaQuan Smith at 8pm took us all the way back downtown. So we had cocktails at the Maison Premiere Oyster Bar over in Brooklyn before calling it a night. Day Five.
Winona is wearing Duro Olowu | Handbag by Balenciaga
We started out on Sunday morning with Ulla Johnson at the New York Library. And then spent much of the day at Spring Studios checking out this and that, including video presentations, lookbooks, and the Black Designer Showcase featuring three emerging creators of color, Khiry, House of Aama and Third Crown. Then Sergio Hudson’s show at 7:00, before a mad dash to the old Woolworth Building for Altuzarra, followed by cocktails, a late dinner, and boom. Another day done! Day Four.
Winona is wearing Sergio Hudson | Handbag by Fendi
Security is tight in many places. Fashion Week is ripe with firsts. At Spring Studios, the Black in Fashion Council is going all day with showrooms featuring Keama, Megan Renee, Ashya, Justin Wesley and Ndigo Studio. Jason Wu’s presentation was live while Maisie Wilen did a mindblowing halographic show. Lots of video by Nicole Miller, Tadashi Shoji, and Alice + Olivia. Christian Siriano was on the runway at the Empire State Building with Susan Sarandon and Aquaria in attendance and Brandon Maxwell’s show, at the Roth Theatre in Union Square, finished another long day. Whew! Day Three.
Winona is wearing Jonathan Cohen
Here we are. Another Fashion Week in New York City! On Friday, between the genderless fashions by designers Teddy Vonranson, Tristan Ditwiler and A. Potts, Proenza Schouler at the Brant Foundation and Bronx and Banco at the Bowery Hotel, I ran back and forth before landing at Spring Studios for the Art of Rodarte exhibit. For a minute. Christian Cowan showed party frocks at One World Observatory at 7 and Elena Velez was at the Freehand Hotel on Lex even later. It was a busy first day. Day Two.
Winona is wearing Dolce & Gabbana | Handbag by Proenza Schouler