Best of Show

Crystal Charity's Ten Best Dressed Luncheon at Neiman Marcus launches the social season

Amy Adams  |  Photos by Dana Driensky
October 04, 2012
Event Date:
March 27, 2012

Most Dallas doyennes spent their summers in various cooler climes, but all found camaraderie when faced with the challenge of donning fall-appropriate fashion in 100-degree heat. Alber Elbaz of Lanvin was the designer of choice at the Crystal Charity Ball Fashion Show and Luncheon at Neiman Marcus Downtown ‹ due, in no small part, to the fact that his was the day's featured collection. (His iconic fall cameo necklace hung from many a swan-like neck, surely warming the heart of Lanvin USA CEO Thierry Andretta.) When chic souls strayed from the formula, the results were outstanding: Heather Esping in Azzedine Alaïa and a Chanel-and-Givenchy clad Heather Furniss (one-upping Carine Roitfeld in her sheer black stockings) kept the style quotient high. Neiman Marcus VIPs ‹ including Karen Katz, Jim Gold, Neva Hall, Gabrielle de Papp, Jonathan Joselove, Ann Stordahl, Wanda Gierhart, and Shelle Sills ‹ were out in force, illustrating the importance of this partnership between two of the city's most influential organizations. Post cocktails in The Shoe Salon, the group ascended to the second floor for the luncheon's real entertainment ­ the Lanvin runway show and the runway walk of this year's Crystal Charity Ten Best Dressed ladies. And to top it off was the exciting announcement from ball chairman Aileen Pratt: Annette and Harold Simmons would be donating one million dollars to the organization for the sixth straight year. Honorary chair Gene Jones, arriving fresh off the plane from a Dallas Cowboys' victory in New York, strolled first down the runway, followed by the Best Dressed lovelies Tricia Besing, Nancy Carter, Ashley Tripplehorn Hunt, Dee Dee Lee, Kim Miller, Lynn McBee, Pat McEvoy, Ellen Winspear, Pam Perella, Nancy Carlson (in a showstopping sequined Lanvin dress), and Hall of Fame Honoree Lana Andrews. Their appearance heralded Lanvin's fall collection, along with the country's first peek at Elbaz's pre-spring collection, a gorgeous assemblage of jeweled colors, sportif influences and feminine draping ‹ although, based on audience reaction, the candy-colored visors sported by the models won't be seen poolside at the Dallas Country Club any time soon. What one does hope to spy at the Crystal Charity Ball, come December, is the black strapless stunner swathed in ivory ruffles. Joining luncheon chairman Robyn Conlon were Ann Carruth, Tanya Foster, Doris Jacobs, Sally Cullum, Carol Quist, Michelle Nussbaumer, Alicia Wood, Melanie Miller, Ann Dyer, Betsy Sowell, Libby Hunt, Virginia Clements, Jo Guerin, Patty Dedman Nail, Debbie Oates, Rachael Dedman, and a smiling section of Best Dressed husbands.