Sunday, September 29, 2013

Runway The Real Way at Yotel Fashion Week Brunch

During Fashion Week, we were invited by Catherine Schuller to participate in her Runway the Real Way at YOTEL HOTEL near Times Square. Catherine wore a necklace and a dress from the designers featured during the show, in YOTEL's signature color of purple. (Click on photos to enlarge or to view slide show.)

Catherine (left), who is Vice President of Marketing for the Association of Image Consultants International and a famous plus-size model and spokesperson, approached us to walk in the show she curated and produced at YOTEL HOTEL for a fashion week brunch on Sunday, September 8th.  Her philosophy is that in order for the runway to be real, there needs to be diversity among the models based on age, race, gender and size. For Catherine's report about the event, click here.

When we arrived, Catherine wasn't quite sure whose styles she'd have us wear, but when we saw Victor-John Villanueva (whom we'd first met a year ago at the Yayoi Kusama opening), we asked if we could wear his work.  Victor's brand is called 3PTPOP.  He also has shirts and leggings with the beaded images screenprinted onto them.  A big Andy Warhol fan, here's Victor in his Velvet Underground tee shirt.  (Banana by Andy.)

Here are a few of Victor's medallions, all intricately made of plastic beads.  The two on the far right are both Victor personae.  No doubt you recognize Grace Jones and Bill Cunningham next to them.

Originally, Valerie was going to wear 3PTPOP's Grace Jones medallion, but puh-leeze! After they put Grace-like make-up on Jordan (at Valerie's suggestion!), there was no contest who could carry it off better.

Here's Susan Grant and our pal Suzanne Golden.  Suzanne has her very own medallion!

Want a closer look?

Here's Cameron before his transformation...

And here's runway-ready Cameron wearing a pair of the previously mentioned 3PTPOP tee shirt and leggings.

Victor wasn't the only vendor.  We can't show you all of them, but OF COURSE, we have to show you Evetta Perry, a milliner whose work we greatly admire.  She had plenty of fabulous, seriously chic hats, but here Evetta shows her sense of humor with a sushi plate hat (which she's wearing), and a petits fours plate hat. For more information about Evetta's Harlem's Heaven Hats, click here:

This black and white dress made of felt was one of our favorites in the show.

This shot gives you an idea of the diversity among the models.

Behind this blonde bombshell is a shot of Evetta and her hats.

How absolutely terrific does this woman look in Evetta's green flowered straw hat?

This model knew exactly how to show off this dress. It looked fabulous before she showed its flare (and its flair!), but when she saw the camera, she really went into action.

Needless to say, there was no shortage of attitude among the models assembled that day. Everyone was "on" and ready to go just like this woman in a white jumpsuit.

We both wanted this hat!

As it got closer to showtime, everyone gathered behind the entryway. Everything was very well choreographed. We had a rehearsal beforehand, and there was a major domo-type at the entrance, making sure there were no unplanned gaps between models, and no one rushing out before her (or his) allotted time.

Since we were wearing our own clothes and just adding accessories, we had lots less to do to get ready. While everyone else was dashing around, it wasn't our turn yet, so we got to sit and take it easy. Sort of.  The odd angle of the photograph reflects the very tight space we were in.  You can see someone's luggage behind Jean.  Everything was everywhere, and in the mad rush there was no time to organize.  (The Andy Warhol fan by Jean is one of many that Victor was giving out - all images from his line.  Further below you'll see Valerie with a Grace Jones fan.)

Behind Valerie, they're giving and taking directions.  We're ready for our close-up.

One of the accessories designers posed for a photo with us.

Davey Mitchell was also at the brunch that day and stopped by backstage to wish us luck.  His graphic shirt looked amazing.

And it's showtime, folks!  Here's a short video that Suzanne took on her iPhone, immortalizing our passage on the catwalk.  (Thanks, Suzanne!)

We sized the video for the blog. If you want to see it in all its glory (same thing, just bigger), click here.

This is a screen-shot of us from Victor-John's Facebook page.

After the dust settled, we headed home.

What we're wearing:
Jean is wearing a vintage Darcel lacquered straw hat; a black and white tiny leopard print jacket from The Vintage Store; Issey Miyake Pleats Please backpack; Eileen Fisher harem pants; Jeffrey Campbell black and white striped platform boots; vintage black and white chandelier earrings and necklace; black and white foam bracelets from Chaos; black and black& white bakelite rings.

Valerie is wearing a two-toned blue vintage velvet hat by Mr. Arnold, vintage blue earrings with adhesive blue dots, wool jacket by Dana Buchman, spider pin from the flea market, painted wooden bracelet that folds into a cube, pants by Issey Miyake, unlabeled two-toned blue cotton shoes.


  1. I so want to wear the Bill Cunningham medallion - talk to Victor for me, will you?? It says a lot that you two could wear your own outfits in the show and out-style the models. What cool models - love the range of ages and sizes. Some drool-worthy hats in there too...ooh, would have loved to have been there!