Ericka Bagwell, Todd Ramos
Italian dancers perform in the plaza at River Oaks District for the birthday bash.
Birthday girl Donae Cangelosi Chramosta
Karen Henry, Diane Caplan
Lenny Matuszewski, Sheree Frede
Maryam Afshari Khreibani & James Khreibani
Roseann Rogers, Ericka Bagwell
Rudy & Debbie Festari
Shannon Hall, Bill Baldwin, Fady Armanious
Deborah Duncan, Donae Cangelosi Chramosta, Gretchen Wright
Rachel Gower, Ursaline Hamilton
Bridget & Neil Sommerlatte
Rob & Donae Chramosta with Bella Chramosta
Brittany Zucker, Paul David Van Atta, Sherri Zucker, Gregg Harrison
Michael Bickham, Tamara Klosz Bonar, Norman Frede
Kathryn & Colby Swain
Gabriela Dror, Kim Padgett, Cheryl Byington
Iris & Keith Shaftel
Nicholas Phat Nguyen, Dustin Cargill
Andrea La, Chi Hoang
The Vintage Contessa's 50th birthday cake by Elizabeth Harvey Designs.
Could 50 be the new 40? Checking out the energy that Donae Cangelosi Chramosta packed into her 50th birthday celebration, one could believe it. The effervescent Chramosta, better known as the Vintage Contessa (a nod to her vintage fashion and estate business The Vintage Contessa & Times Past), packed River Oaks District with more than 200 revelers for her “Fifty and Fabulous!” bash.
The evening was not just about the popular birthday girl. With the invitation to party came the request, in lieu of gifts, for contributions for KnowAutism. By night’s end, not a minute before midnight, guests had contributed $23,000 to the non-profit.
The Italian themed fête began with cocktails in Dolce & Gabbana, where guests preened in their requisite black and gold fashions. The star of the night stepped out in a bold black and yellow floral D&G frock, black stockings and rocking pumps. Fashion savant Clifford Pugh and his partner, John Dascoulias, dressed to the nines in black tuxes with gold bow ties. Rocking the night was Shannon Hall in gold leather slacks and Lenny Matuszewski who walked on the wild side in a quilted gold bomber jacket.
Guests soon headed over to Toulouse Café and Bar where they wined, dined and partied in the plaza. The night’s entertainment included a traditional Italian performance by a cadre of costumed dancers, DJ tunes focusing on stylish Italian music, artist Hahn Tran created works representative of The Vintage Contessa and Rob Chramosta led the singing in tribute to his wife’s birthday. And there was the whimsical, gilded cake by Elizabeth Harvey Designs.
Event underwriter Toulouse provided the party fare. The restaurant and Bentley of Houston, another of the night’s sponsors, will both contribute auction items to the KnowAutism gala, set for February 22.
Partying al fresco: Debbie and Rudy Festari, Deborah Duncan, Tracy and Harry Faulkner, Ericka Bagwell, Ursaline Hamilton, Bill Baldwin and Fady Armanious, Iris and Keith Shaftel, Michael Bickham, Tamara Klosz Bonar, Sheree and Norman Frede, Todd Ramos, Kathryn and Colby Swain, and Bridget and Neil Sommerlatte.