Society / Featured Parties

Houston Socialite’s Birthday Party Turns Into a Mini Masked Ball — No Virtual Get Together Needed

Brief Respite From the Real World Delights an Influential Group

BY // 07.06.20

As the COVID-19 pandemic refuses to leave Houston alone, hosts and hostesses are cleverly working their way around this uninvited party guest. While some wonder when socializing with friends will mean more than partying with merely a handful of carefully screened, temperature-checked amigos, others are embracing precautions meaning that every gathering is now a masked ball of sorts.

The most recent example is Hallie Vanderhider‘s birthday party at Tootsies. Hosted by her bestie, Fady Armanious, Tootsies creative fashion director, the total headcount was 20. Everyone arrived at the 4 to 6 cocktail hour with fashionable masks and just about all of the ladies were dressed in floral print frocks, some with masks to match.

Both men and women kept their masks on except to sip drinks and pose for photos. Social distancing felt almost natural as guests moved judiciously through the popular fashionista haunt.

For a few hours, the close ensemble was able to put aside the growing health/financial disaster of the country to focus on friendship and perhaps a little fashion. The brief respite from apocalyptic news reports and personal woes was welcomed by the chic clutch that visited with one another over glasses of Veuve Clicquot.

And then there were the sweet treats guaranteeing a sugar high — colorfully sprinkled cake balls from Dessert Gallery; a Berry Chantilly cake from Whole Foods; and delightful cookies, featuring images of Hallie and her fashion favorites, from Michael’s Cookie Jar.

Tootsies’ folk joining Fady in celebrating Hallie were owner Norman Lewis, store director Shelley Taylor Ludwick, and Tootsies’ senior buyer Penne Weidig. The guest list included Hallie’s beau, attorney and former mayoral candidate Bill King; Fady’s beau Heights real estate magnate Bill Baldwin; Tenenbaum Jewelers’ Tony Bradfield and Kevin Black and the Social Book’s Scott Evans and Jeff Henry.

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  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - DALLAS (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - DALLAS (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - DALLAS (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - DALLAS (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - DALLAS (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - DALLAS (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - DALLAS (ROOMS)

The ladies in their frocks included Amanda Boffone, Roz Pactor, Bobbie Nau, Roslyn Bazzelle, Tammie Johnson, Julie Chen, Ellie Francisco and Sonya Soto.

The celebration continued with dinner at Tony’s at which the birthday girl was joined by Bill King, Fady and Bill Baldwin and was feted with Tony’s iconic Grand Marnier soufflé.

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