Doris Bergman has done it again, cramming an astonishing mix of philanthropy, fashion and famous folks into an afternoon at the sixth annual Valentine Romance Oscar Style Lounge & Party at West Hollywood’s Fig & Olive restaurant.
The inventive and innovative organizer of Oscar month’s first major style lounge welcomed celebrities such as Eva La Rue, Rosa Blasi, Obba Babatundé, Angela Bassett (and her handsome husband Courtney B. Vance), former Oscar winner Louis Gossett, Jr, Oscar nominee Robin Mathews (make-up artist for Dallas Buyers’ Club), Cheech & Chong, Elizabeth and William Shatner, Carla and Lou Ferrigno, Dot Marie Jones (Glee) and wife Bridgett Casteen Jones, Tia Carrere, Maria Conchita Alonso, Kevin Farley, Chelsie Hightower (Dancing with the Stars), Kate Flannery (The Office), Illeana Douglas, Tommy Lee Davidson, Richard Brooks and Lisa Vidal (Being Mary Jane), John Savage, Charlie Bewley, Jaclyn Betham and Peter Parros (The Haves and Have Nots), Jeremy Luke (Mob City), Katie Wagner and other respected talent to a lovely afternoon to not only receive some interesting fashion and health essentials, but also do their part donating goods, time and money to Wednesday’s Child–the Dave Thomas Foundation.
The charity highlighted its initiative benefiting teens aged 16–18 in foster care, providing for their financial and educational needs as well as finding them permanent adoptive homes. Los Angeles Fox News anchorwoman Christine Devine, long the local celebrity spokesperson, was on hand to promote the cause in her signature stylish and witty way.
Wednesday’s Child’s adoption information and services cover several US cities, including Washington, DC, New York, Philadelphia and Atlanta. While that organization is making a difference beyond Hollywood, it was interesting to note many of the genuinely cool products for wardrobe and home were also benefiting a number of charities. Hillel Rzepka and his Handmade Hearts were teamed up with Yes to Hope—a fine choice as it was a Valentine’s Day event, though everybody could use a little love throughout the year.
Ooh La Bra takes heart coverage a little more literally with their bejewelled bra straps that transform necessary cleavage coverage and support into a fashion statement. Created by Lisa McKenzie, who hails from Louisiana, the collection ranges from the affordable $26–$40 for its general collection to sterling silver and diamond straps that retail between $1,500 and $2,300). Besides providing a neat and functional alternative to necklaces, McKenzie’s company also supports (no pun intended) You Night breast cancer survivor runway shows that raise money as well as self-esteem for the cause.
Simply Eartha is a home and accessories developed by her daughter, Kitt Shapiro, that not only keeps the smart and sassy singer and actress’s spirit alive—the candles and shirts are adorned with Eartha Kitt’s words of wisdom to her daughter—but also the Colon Cancer Alliance. Said Kitt with a purr that recalls her strong mother, ‘My mother lost her battle with colon cancer in 2008. This is a disease that can be prevented and treated with regular screening. Anything that I can do to make people aware of the need for early screening and detection is important to me.’
In fashion, you could say that the son also rises. Once again, Single Dress, a mainstay at Doris’s events had wonderful things for women on the town. However, founder Galina Sobolev’s son, Michael, is breaking out on his own with some smart underwear for the men in their lives. Then again, the charming young man himself offers something for the ladies, and proof the ever-youthful Galina was a fantastic Mom. Mon Atelier provided the after-eight formal glamour, while Timmy Woods was on the scene with her hand-crafted wooden minaudières and clutches.
Most of the jewellery was both affordable and statement-making, from Kendra Bridelle’s LusciousS Collection (now with cool ’60s-inspired pieces), to earthy-antique inspired designs from Silvana K to Guess showcasing the latest hues in its timepiece collections: rose gold and navy blue. Another mainstay, Debra Mitchell’s Twisted Silver and Perch featured blasts of colour through integration of earthy semi-precious and rich gemstone colour crystals enlivening her popular, antique and reclaimed-piece inspired designs (where can I buy that great flower collar I spied on a colleague?). However, Bridelle was not only proud of her forthcoming eponymous line but also her representation of Gilbert Albert, a Swiss designer with show-stopping raw gems and rocks mounted with precious metals and diamonds.
Whitening Lightening, Begley’s and Bill’s Sodas and Nature’s Flavors were also back with their healthy vices (teeth whitening, sodas and lip gloss), but the new company Mia Bath and Body mixed things up, literally with their own do-it-yourself fragrance products.—Elyse Glickman, US West Coast Editor