Best Dressed Honorees, Skipping the World Series, Win Big While the Astros Fall

Nothing Can Stop a Bonafide Fashionista from the Catwalk, Not Even A Championship Bid

BY // 10.30.19
photography Johnny Than

In the end, first-time Best Dressed honoree Melissa Juneau wasn’t so bummed that she had given up her primo World Series seats to be introduced in the designer salon at Neiman Marcus. She along with BBFs Laurie and Tracy Krohn had ditched their tickets for the event that is just as important in fashion land as the World Series is in baseball terrain.

After all, they had front row seats in Tilman Fertitta’s oh-so-private Oak Room at the billionaire’s Post Oak Hotel for viewing the Astros’ miserable loss in Game 6.

But it was win, win, win for the 10 ladies introduced into the fashion firmament. With visions of designers dancing in their heads, the high-style clutch was introduced by Houston Chronicle fashion and beauty editor Joy Sewing.

Entering the exclusive sorority as first-timers were Ann Ayre, Dr. Alice Mao Brams, Gaynell Drexler, Melissa Juneau, Joanna Hartland Marks, Roslyn Bazzelle Mitchell and Leigh Smith. Taking bows for the second time were Hallie Vanderhider and Estela Cockrell. And gliding into the rarified ranks of  the Best Dressed Hall of Fame was Greggory Burk, unable to attend.

What were they wearing on this terribly important evening? Ayre in Lela Rose, Vanderhider in Azzedine Alaïa, Juneau in Dolce & Gabbana, Bazzelle Mitchell in Oscar de la Renta, Hartland Marks in Chiara Boni, Mao Brams in Lela Rose and living on the edge Cockrell, who selected her Chiara Boni/Derek Lam outfit at Neiman Marcus that morning.

Cockrell’s husband, David Cockrell, accompanied her to the announcement party but sped off to Minute Maid Park before the presentation. Best Dressed Hall of Famer Phyllis Williams dressed in a chic Donna Karan/Dior ensemble for the party only to rush home and change for the Astros game. Fan Marla Hurley stepped out in Astros chic — an Astros T-shirt worn with swooping skirt, jacket and Astros socks worn with high-heeled sandals.

The honorees will swan down the catwalk at the Post Oak Hotel on March 25 during the Houston Chronicle Best Dressed Luncheon and Neiman Marcus Fashion Presentation Benefiting March of Dimes. Stephen Brunelle, Neiman Marcus GM, announced to the gathering that the fashion presentation would be that of Oscar de la Renta.

Lots of players go into making this event the annual success that it is. Chairing the 38th Best Dressed luncheon are Brigitte Kalai and Alicia Smith. A first for the luncheon, Sue Smith will reign as honorary chair. Lindley Arnoldy and Kristina Somerville are already at work as raffle chairs.

Key players in the event are Elizabeth Ortega, CEO of The Woman’s Hospital of Texas, presenting sponsor of the luncheon; Darcie Champagne Wells, March of Dimes state director; and Stephanie Tsuru and Dr. Sippi Khurana, chairs of the Roosevelt Society, which represents the top-tier of March of Dimes donors.

And, of course, the bottom line is all about raising funds for March of Dimes and its mission of supporting women’s health throughout pregnancy and the delivery of healthy babies.

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