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Fresh Faces of Fashion held its much-awaited-for raffle for a Mercedes and fashion show by Christian Siriano at Park Place Mercedes Wednesday. The place was more than gushing with beautiful people. Yet there was an undercurrent of a not-so-beautiful situation skulking among those-in-the-know. More about that later.
The FFF class of 2011 was more than just gorgeous. They had broken nails emailing promotion of the program that benefits the Suicide and Crisis Center of North Texas. Along with that they had spent long hours hounding friends and family to buy tickets for the raffle of one of two Mercedes. For their efforts, the prize was not just raising awareness and money for S&CC, but also two roundtrip tickets on American Airlines, gas for a year from Park Place and detailing of their car.
FFF Piper Young felt confident that she topped the others until she heard through the grape-
vine that sister FFF Amanda Sterett had blown everyone away with a last minute surge in ticket sales. Oh, well, Piper admitted the booty would have been nice, but the purpose was to raise money and spread the word about S&CC and she had done just that, like her sister FFF’s.
But as the evening continued, the raffle seemed to be a secondary concern. It was party time for a crew that looked like the call sheets from Page Parks and Kim Dawson. There wasn’t a pimple or split end in the room. Just luscious ladies and Gentleman Quarterly cover guys. What’s that saying about birds of a feather? Well, they were flocking at Park Place.
In the professional model category Jan Strimple and Rhonda Chambers Sargent for once were in the crowd opposed to being backstage. . . Actresses LeeAnne Locken (she’s co-chairing the upcoming Top Hat & Tails) and Sonia “Celebrity Waiters” Acavedo with Michelle Classen were right at home in the Mercedes showroom. . . Gregg Asher decided to give his ponytail holder the night off and wore his blonde locks shoulder length. . . Throughout the showroom, FFF mothers Doris Jacobs, Dee Dee Lee and Muffin
Lemak made it pretty obvious where their FFF daughters got their looks and fashionable
Both Doris and Dee Dee opted for sizzling pink outfits but in different extremes. While Dee Dee looked very Dallas Woman’s Club in her pearls and ladies-who-do-tea outfit, Doris’s off-the-shoulder, floral silk dress screamed, “Shall we have drinks by the cabana?” . . . When “Time of My Life” was heard
playing over the crowd, someone asked Keith Bernardo what singers made the song famous. Without hesitation, Keith whipped out his smartphone and answered, “It was from Dirty Dancing and sung by Bill Medley and Jennifer
Warnes”. . . S&CC founder Dr. Cliff Jones couldn’t make it, but his adorable granddaughter Bridget Boggess was on hand to represent the family.
As the swelling crowd filled every nook and cranny of Park Place, designer Christian was backstage prepping his show’s lineup. Like the late Jimmy Galanos and other designers, the 2008 Project Runway winner seemed to have a relationship with each outfit as if it were a friend or a child. When he felt all was just perfect, he relaxed his brow and smiled.
But before his collection paraded on the Park Place runway, FFF had some business to be conducted by Park Place’s Robert Morris, Modern Luxury‘s Christian Poppert and FFF maven Yvonne Crum. Initially, it was a little hard for the threesome to find just the right spot on the wrap-around runway to address the guests. Remember the crowd was everywhere. But finally they found working the center section was the best option.
First there was the presentation of a very nice $10,000 check from Park Place to S&CC’s Executive Director Margie Wright. At first the presentation was a little hard to hear over the five-deep audience’s chattering. But leave it to Margie, who commanded everyone to pipe down. They did. She added, “I used to teach kindergarten.” Much laughter.
Then Yvonne took over and explained that her FFF cohort Jill Rowlett had planned to be present, but was stuck on a runway in Aspen with Dee Wyly due to bad weather.
Knowing what the crowd was anticipating, Yvonne, Robert and MLD’s Christian pulled out the bowl with raffle tickets. Packed like a Lady Gaga’s mosh pit, the guests grew closer to the staging to see if their ticket had resulted in a new Mercedes. Ah, but there could only be one lucky winner and it was long-legged Lisa Stapp in silky shortest shorts.
But before there were any boo-hoos about not winning, the FFF Class of 2011 started parading the catwalk like old hands. After their showing back in March at Stanley Korshak, these gals are fearless in facing the crowds. (Check MySweetCharity’s PhotoGallery for the FFF’s runway action.) Following their presentation, the professionals took over the dazzling group in Siriano’s collection to rave reviews.
Yes, it was all so beautiful and flawless except for that “undercurrent” mentioned earlier.
Established in 1966 by Dr. Jones, S&CC’s funding is just half of the challenge in helping people deal with life-threatening ordeals. The other half is getting the word out to use S&CC. Thanks to the FFF, not only has $1 million been raised in just five years, but it’s also created a greater awareness of the services offered by the S&CC. Unfortunately, that was just the problem for the undercurrent. Earlier in the day, it was learned that a highly-educated and well-known individual had taken his life devastating his family, friends and associates. One can’t help but wonder if he had only contacted S&CC, the results might have been different.
The program that Cliff started 45 years ago is available, free and needed in all segments of society. So, Fresh Faces keep getting the word out.