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Society / Fashion

Zac Posen Ditches Fashion Week for Dallas’ 10 Best Dressed

Project Runway Star Stays True to His Texas Love Affair

BY // 09.25.17
photography MySweetCharity/Jeanne Prejean

If we were to rank the love affair between fashion designer Zac Posen and iconic retailer Neiman Marcus, it would stand on par with the likes of Gatsby and Daisy, Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy, Scarlett O’Hara and Rhett Butler.

The designer and retailer’s history is as storied as they come: In 2003, shortly after launching his namesake line, Posen, at the request of friend and Neiman Marcus vice president and fashion director Ken Downing, jetted to Dallas for his first Texas trunk show — and a party of epic proportions hosted by NM and PaperCity at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek. (“I actually think I had bare-chested boys gardening in the Mansion — and no one knew why,” recalled Downing.)

This month, the pair’s longtime history came full circle. Posen, now well established in the fashion world (he is a judge on mega-hit TV show Project Runway, and a documentary about his rise to fame, House of Z, just debuted on Vogue.com) decided it best to ditch the bright lights and big city of New York Fashion Week, opting to debut his collection at a different, more intimate venue, instead: The Crystal Charity Ball Ten Best Dressed Fashion Show and Luncheon, held at Neiman Marcus Downtown.

Prior to his Ten Best Dressed runway debut, we caught up with Posen, who joined a rare-air crowd of designers who have been honored at the fashion show and luncheon. (See: Carolina Herrera, Michael Kors, Giorgio Armani, and more.) Our conversation focused on his collection, naturally, and how his decision to change venues for launching his latest looks was rooted in a yearning to return to the fashion world of old — a time when designers presented their newest collection to clients first, and to the rest of the world second.

No doubt, the exclusivity and monumental nature of the occasion was, to the delight of luncheon chair Christi Urschel, a key reason for the luncheon and fashion show selling out months in advance. “This show,” said Downing, “is a gift from my heart and Zac’s heart for all of you.”

But, of course, this afternoon is about more than just fashion, as it celebrates 10 women — the Ten Best Dressed — recognized not just for their style, but rather for their significant charitable impact and support for the many children’s charities that benefit from The Crystal Charity Ball.

Holiday Gifting

  • Oscar De La Renta - Clutch
  • Loeffler Randall - Shoes
  • Bond No 9 - Perfume
  • Oscar De La Renta - Earrings
  • Casa di Lino
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Bond No 9 - Candle
  • Cle Du Peau - Nail Polish
  • Loeffler Randall - Clutch
  • Cle Du Peau - Lip Gloss
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Nocturne Studio

Downing did the honors, recognizing the ladies (Anita Arnold, Delilah Boyd, Katherine Coker, Janie Condon, Lisa Cooley, Tucker Enthoven, Pat Harloe, Julie Hawes, Amy Hegi, Piper Wyatt, and Hall of Fame Honoree Charlotte Jones Anderson) as each took her turn down the runway. Then, Downing scurried backstage to help Posen put finishing styling touches on the more than 70 looks that next appeared on the catwalk.

Accessories, it’s worth noting, was a major focal point of Zac Posen’s show. Australian jewelry designer Margot McKinney, upon hearing that Posen was coming to town, offered up her full collection of precious pearl jewelry for the occasion.

“Margot flew in with piles and piles of diamonds and jewels,” said Downing.The result was, quite literally, show stopping. When a model came out wearing a massive pearl necklace, the audience collectively gasped. Many in attendance must have known that they were in the presence of a multi-million dollar bauble — and the world’s most perfect, most rare pearl. Few pieces could better mark the significance of this year’s Ten Best Dressed occasion.

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