My anxiety started to kick in around 1pm yesterday, two hours before Vogue Magazine's 2014 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Show at the Chateau Marmont. I did not know what I was going to wear. And for this occasion I needed to get it right. The past season Rodarte dress I had selected was amazing and gorgeous, but there was just one small problem: the June & Hudson cheetah print dress I had picked up for $78 kept staring at me from its hanger with that "you know I look better on you" look. Though I seriously questioned my sanity (can you really enter the den of Anna Wintour wearing a $78 dress and emerge alive?), in the end, I decided "yes," paired it with my Givenchy sandals, and off I went.
Within minutes of arriving I knew I had made the right choice. The compliments were not just flowing (and keep in mind this is quite a fabulous and discriminating crowd we are talking about), people were literally chasing me down just to find out where they could get the dress. Of course there was just one problem... I just did not really want to tell this particular crowd where they could get the dress. As you might imagine (given that I write LE CATCH), it is pretty rare that I am reluctant to reveal the provenance of my clothing regardless of how absurdly low its price might have been. But given the crowd, sponsor, venue, etc., this was just one of those times. Nonetheless, it quickly became apparent that I did not really have a choice, as people were getting impatient, so I offered that I would post it on LE CATCH today.
Relieved that I had put that day of reckoning behind me (or at least postponed it), we took our seats and the fashion show began. But as I looked down to check my watch, that is when the real fun started. There along my dress sleeve was a small tear. Strange I thought, as the dress was new and I had never worn it. Then I looked at my other sleeve. Another tear. When the show ended, I got up, and felt... a tear on my side. I walked a few steps... another tear.
So yes, there I was at a Vogue event with some of the fanciest and hard-core fashionistas living, and my dress was literally coming apart at the seams! Apparently, by forsaking Rodarte for my $78 number, I had clearly displeased the fashion gods, and no, I would not be leaving Anna's party alive or at least not with any clothes left on my body.
Of course, the cocktailing was just getting started, and I did not want to leave, so I queried a few trusted friends as to whether they could tell that my dress was disintegrating before their eyes. Though there was some concern as to where this might end, all agreed that, at least for the moment, the cheetah print hid the holes nicely and that I could continue.
Well I made it through the whole party with people still fawning over the dress, and then headed off to dinner at Soho House with a group, including several former Vogue editors. However, when I felt the dress seam split down my back and the air rush in, I knew it was time to leave. So I got up, said goodbye, and literally backed away from the table waving. Kristen Wiig should have been playing me. Seriously, it was crazy.
I am not sure what the moral of this story is. Obviously, I am and will always be a fan of good fashion, both high and low, since we are fortunate to live in world where beauty can be found at every price point (as long as you look hard enough or read LE CATCH!). Of course, fast fashion is not usually crafted as well as designer, but I am pretty sure that (a) I have now experienced, without a doubt, the worst case scenario and (b) it's quite fitting that this all happened to me. Oh, and FYI: I am returning the dress to get another one, because it is awesome and, of course, I am hoping that this was just one bad apple. You can get it here, if you dare!
Photo: Stefanie Keenan