Fashion / Shopping

Esé Azénabor and Sharon Lee Clark Host a Feminine Fairytale in the Dallas Design District

Inside the Gilded Affair

BY // 06.07.23
photography Celeste Cameron

The collab started with a brainstorming brunch at Sadelle’s and culminated with glasses of cotton-candy-topped champagne in the Design District. When haute couture designer-to-the-stars Esé Azénabor teams up with artist and Krane Home wallpaper wizard Sharon Lee Clark, a feminine fairytale is imminent. Clark, no stranger to adorning high fashion accessories with her ornate Korean-inspired imagery (earlier this year, she collaborated with bag designer Marie De La Roche), met Esé with an immediate “yes” when asked if she would do the same to her ethereal gowns.

“But it’s very expensive fabric. What if you make a mistake?” Esé asked. The artist who once said she often paints in head-to-toe glam and leaves unscathed, however, was confident in her precision: “Oh no. I don’t make mistakes.”

Lele Sadoughi in an Esé Azénabor x Sharon Lee Clark gown (Photo by Celeste Cameron)
Lele Sadoughi in an Esé Azénabor x Sharon Lee Clark gown (Photo by Celeste Cameron)

Held at Esé’s Design District showroom and atelier on Cole Street, the Friday afternoon fashion show benefitting the Children’s Cancer Fund saw the well-heeled ladies who lunch in their best daytime frocks. Harpist Merry Miller serenaded guests with her graceful rendition of Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me” as they mused about and discussed upcoming weekend plans. When cool girl DJ RomiQ (who Clark met during her art show at Carolina Herrera in Highland Park Village) amped up the ambiance, guests made their way to their seats.

Patricia Quirino, aka DJ RomiQ on the turntables (Photo by Celeste Cameron)
Patricia Quirino, aka DJ RomiQ, on the turntables (Photo by Celeste Cameron)

The name of the collection, as the duo explained, was Ignite – and ignite it did. Model Tracy Ripsin strutted in an enchanting Esé Azénabor custom silk Mikado skirt decorated with Clark’s signature: crane birds. Headband extraordinaire Lele Sadoughi paired her defining accessory with a statement-sleeved gown gilded with florals. Besides silk, there was also an abundance of rhinestones, feathers, and tule on the runway. As for my favorite: an understated yellow column dress painted with acrylic whimsical scenes of nature was one I have daydreamed about since.

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