Sunday, April 5, 2009

Club gets groovy with vintage style

By TOMIE LUNSFORD
Telegram Staff Writer

Vintage wear is not out of style.
That was the theme of the Newcomers Club's April 1 style show at the Wildflower Country Club.
'The thing about vintage is that it's fun,' said Maxine Willingham, a Salado area buyer and personal shopper of women's apparel. 'And we love to see how it transpires to the new fashions of today.'
Jeannie Parker, one of the event's six models, agreed.
'Vintage is timeless,' Ms. Parker said. 'And very lovely.'
The show had the feel of a trip in a time machine. The models sported 18 fashions that were popular in the '60s and '70s. Ms. Willingham said the outfit selection showed how styles changed from 'hippie to disco.' And some of the featured outfits were replicas of ones worn by celebrities.
For example, Ms. Parker donned a turquoise Bob Mackie dress with sequined insert at the waist. Mackie was responsible for several of the gown designs of Cher and Carol Burnett.
And Model Wanda Slye wore a royal blue silk chiffon dress by Canadian designer Wayne Clark who dressed stars like Loretta Young and Lana Turner.
'Notice this chiffon has a flowing skirt with many yards of fabric,' said announcer Liz Martin, a retired apparel buyer. 'And a plunging neckline, perfect for an evening out.'
And on her third trip down the platform, Ms. Slye wore a replica of the gown worn by Lucille Ball at a 1960s awards dinner. Designed by Maya Verma, it was a two-piece outfit made of shimmering black-and-white sequins.
A highlight of the program was Zora Hutchison's display of a two-piece multi-colored Hawaiian print with midriff tie top and full-cut pants.
'It's absolutely fun,' Ms. Martin said. 'Just look how full of character it is.'
The audience loved it. They clapped and cheered as Ms. Hutchison turned and stopped at some of luncheon tables to give people a close-up view.
Another favorite was the elegant floor-length gown worn by Shirley Gambrell. Made of black silk, it featured a hand-painted lion.
'The finishing touches on this piece are the opera gloves and cigarette holder,' Ms. Martin said.
At first sight of the lion gown, audience members responded with a series of 'Ooohs' and 'Ahhs.'
All of gowns presented at the style show are a part of Ms. Willingham's private collection. None of them are available for purchase.
Other models involved in the show were Pat Cobb and Esty Ferrel.
Jackie Gipson did the hair and make-up, and dressers were Sylvia Brownlow and Jana Lesher.
The Newcomers Club has a style show every spring to examine popular fashion trends and share style tips.
Open to women new to Bell County, the club is a social organization that has the goal of promoting community involvement. From bridge to hiking to sewing to reading, the group offers a variety of activity on a weekly basis.
Membership is open to residents of three years or less, and once obtained, membership is for life.
For information, call 933-7582 or visit www.bellcountynewcomers.com.

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