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Phasion Phest Celebrates 20 Years During Philly Fashion Week

Phashion Phest marks two decades of promoting the city's fashion scene.

September 23, 2013

Phashion Phest has celebrated the best of Philadelphia fashion for the past 20 years.

During the height of Philly Fashion Week, Phashion Phest gears up for its 20th anniversary with a soiree called ‘20 is the New Black’ this Wednesday (September 25, 7 p.m.) at The Shops at Liberty Place (1650 Market St.). By bringing together upscale salons, retailers, and boutiques, Phashion Phest helps to promote the high-end-yet-affordable fashion and beauty industry here in Philadelphia.

“I am so happy that we have been able to present fall fashion and beauty, and keep our guests coming back [while] growing a younger audience of ‘fashionistas’ each fall, for the past 20 years,” says Sharon Phillips Waxman, the event’s executive producer and president of SPW Productions. “It has really been a labor of love.”

The evening will kick off with a cocktail reception featuring Pinnacle Vodka, Rex Goliath wines, and tasty hors d’oeuvres. Guests will have the opportunity to bid on silent auction items while enjoying design showcases by students hailing from local schools, including The Art Institute of Philadelphia, Moore College of Art and Design, Drexel University, and more.

Phashion Phest will start its famed runway show at 8:30 p.m., displaying what are sure to be this fall’s top trends for men and women. Collections from Eileen Fisher, Saks Fifth Avenue Philadelphia, LOFT, Zinman, Knit Wit, and more will be on display, with pieces ready for purchase the next day. In addition, attendees will sample some of the newest beauty trends from local salons and spas including Adolf Biecker, Salon Norman-Dee, Salon Royale Court, and The Studio CL, among others.

Tickets to the event are $50 in advance and $60 at the door. For tickets or additional information, visit phashionphest.com or call 215-670-4325.

By Michelle Mass


Donovan McNabb to Retire in Style with Caesars Atlantic City Event

The Philadelphia Eagles alum hangs up his jersey with an all-star celebration.

September 20, 2013

Former Philadelphia Eagle Donovan McNabb.

Donovan McNabb retires his number 5 jersey after leading the Eagles to four consecutive NFC East division championships. 

Caesars Entertainment Atlantic City will welcome former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb this weekend (Friday and Saturday, September 20-21), as he celebrates retiring his number five jersey from the Eagles franchise.

“I was blessed to have the opportunity to play for the most entertaining and passionate fans in the nation,” notes McNabb affectionately. “After all of the retirement speeches, ceremonies, and farewells are done, I'm going to make some new friends and memories where we all go to party—Atlantic City. It's going to be fun to hang out with the fans who've supported me and the entire Eagles organization throughout the years.”

The celebratory weekend kicks off on Friday (7-8 p.m.) with a private reception at Caesar’s Palladium Ballroom Foyer, where athletes, celebrities, and other VIPs will enjoy hors d’oeuvres provided by Bravo TV reality chef, Roblé Ali. Following photo opportunities, McNabb and his entourage will head to Caesars DUSK Nightclub to continue the party into the early morning hours. On Saturday (11 p.m.-3 a.m.), McNabb will join DJ Banner and Eddie Edge at The Pool After Dark for a proper sendoff, complete with an Eagles green carpet.

Guests can secure bottle service at DUSK by visiting duskac.com, and tickets to The Pool After Dark event on Saturday ($20) or bottle service by visiting thepoolafterdark.com

By Michelle Mass


Q&A: Shaun T. on Sweat AC Festival

The creator of Insanity brings his fitness finesse to Atlantic City.

September 18, 2013

Shaun T. creator of at-home Insanity workouts.

Shaun T. brings his high-powered Insanity workout to Atlantic City this weekend. 

Sweat AC, the second-annual health and fitness event that features classes by top-notch celebrity trainers, comes to Caesars Atlantic City this weekend, September 21-22. We sat down with famed choreographer Shaun T., the creator of home fitness programs like Hip Hop Abs and Insanity, to discuss this year’s festival and staying fit when cold weather hits.

What are you most looking forward to with the Sweat AC festival?  
SHAUN T.: Working out with my fans. I love being in a room with people who inspire me to dig deep in my workouts and in life.

What can attendees expect from your program this year?  
ST: To be pushed to their ultimate fitness limits. Whether they do 50 pushups, or one modified pushup, I want them to do the best that they can do. Hopefully, it will leave them trusting and believing in themselves.

You’re well known for creating Insanity. Did you expect the response to be as widespread as it is?
ST: No! In fact, while shooting the first infomercial for Insanity, I told the producers that I wanted to say that Insanity is the ‘hardest workout ever put on DVD.’ They were afraid that my honesty would scare people away. I think my honesty challenged and motivated people to take the Insanity challenge. When people saw how great the results were, other people joined in.

Where did the idea for Insanity come from?
ST: My first day of high school track and field practice. It was from that training that I learned the essence of Insanity. After 60 days I was in the best shape of my life and I wanted people to feel that fit. I knew if I could get people to feel that way, [my] program would be successful.

What are your tips for staying in shape during the upcoming holidays, and what are some of your favorite forms of exercise besides Insanity?
ST: Find an exercise routine or workout that you love and commit to it. I am a tennis fanatic. I usually do one of my workouts in the morning and then play tennis with my husband Scott for about two hours in the afternoon. As for nutrition, try making 80% of your meals healthy and the rest of your meals the ‘fun foods’ that you love. And remember to always drink plenty of water. 

Get tickets and see the full schedule for Sweat AC at sweatac.com

by Michelle Mass


An Insider's Look at The Philadelphia Collection 2013

The citywide fashion event celebrates its fourth year.

September 16, 2013

Phashion Phest.

An image from The Philadelphia Collection's past Phashion Phest event. 

Philadelphia will once again unite for the love of all things fashion when The Philadelphia Collection (TPC) comes back to town this week (September 18–25). The fourth annual event will promote an assortment of retailers, boutiques, and other fashion-driven enterprises through roughly 75 events, including trunk shows, runway events, fashionable fêtes, and think tanks. 

Philadelphia Style recently sat down with Michelle Shannon, Center City District’s vice president of marketing and communication, and Melanie Johnson, director of research and big events for the City of Philadelphia, to discuss the event. 

For those who are new to the city, what is The Philadelphia Collection?
MICHELLE SHANNON: The Philadelphia Collection is a series of independently produced fashion and style events that take place throughout the entire city of Philadelphia. Founded in 2010, TPC’s mission is to promote the city and all aspects of its fashion economy, including its “collection” of retailers, stylists, designers, modeling agencies, design schools, and more.
MELANIE JOHNSON: It is a citywide event encompassing all the city’s neighborhoods. From Center City to Midtown, Old City, University City, Rittenhouse Row, Manayunk, East Passyunk, and Northern Liberties.

What types of retailers are involved this year?
MS: This year we have retailers covering all facets of the industry, including high-end and luxury brands, vintage shops, independent boutiques, made in the USA, and local designers. We have some larger events such as FBH’s Philly Fashion Week White Tie Gala, The Oval’s Shopping Day Out, Macy’s Fall Fashion Show, Phashion Phest, and XIX Most Fashionable Women in Philadelphia.

How has The Philadelphia Collection benefited Philadelphia's fashion scene?
MJ: Since its inception, the city’s fashion and design community has gained worldwide recognition as a top fashion and shopping destination. We see so many amazing designers and retailers collaborating with each other to present unforgettable events during the Collection. Producers, designers, and everyone in the agency comes out to support each other’s events. Plus, in the last four years, Philadelphia has been named a top shopping destination in the United States.

How has The Philadelphia Collection changed to keep up with the ever-evolving fashion scene?
MS: We have really been able to compile a multi-faceted list of events covering current themes that position Philadelphia as a leading fashion destination. We are so grateful to all the participants who have been able to consistently make the event better every year. In terms of evolving trends, we are seeing more and more events that are focused on made in the USA, highlighting local designers and crafters. We are also seeing the incorporation of exciting technology in many events. 

Plus, see what 7 Philadelphia Collection collaborators have to say about the event>>

Michelle Mass


Menu-Free Dining at Marigold Kitchen

Guests at this West Philadelphia restaurant leave themselves in chef Robert Halpern's hands.

September 13, 2013

Marigold Kitchen, the high-end BYOB establishment located in West Philadelphia, has decided to go menu-free, offering patrons a unique dining experience courtesy of head chef and owner Robert Halpern.

The four-year-old restaurant opted to lose the menu in late August, becoming one of the few eateries on the East coast to implement this program. Currently, menu-free restaurants are sparsely found in cities like New York, Chicago, and Washington, DC, or Japanese restaurants where guests dine omakase-style.

Placing their trust in the Marigold chefs and staff, patrons can expect 15 to 16 bite-sized or small-plate courses after making only one decision: meat, fish, or vegetarian. The meal may start with liquid nitrogen-popped popcorn drizzled with truffle oil and move on to a foie gras chocolate tuile.

“Going ‘menu free’ allows us to have more freedom and creativity, but also better control of freshness, quality, seasonality, and locality,” Halpern said. “We design our menus based on available ingredients, so ingredients drive the menu instead [of] the menu driving the ingredients.” 501 S. 45th St., 215-222-3699

Marigold Kitchen hosts dinner reservations Tuesday-Saturday, 6–8:30 p.m.

By Michelle Mass


Daneen Baird of Spoiled Pretty's 6 Fall Beauty Picks

The popular Philly beauty blogger shares her product musts for colder weather.

September 11, 2013

Beauty blogger extraordinaire and Philadelphia resident Daneen Baird knows a thing or two about putting your best face forward. At the helm of the award-winning website, Spoiled Pretty, Baird is constantly ahead-of-the-trend and in-the-know when it comes to the latest and greatest in beauty products and cosmetics. From nail polish reviews to insider tricks of the trade, Baird dishes it all with a bit of sass.

Philadelphia Style caught up with Baird to get an inside look into the products she can’t live without and her top beauty tips for fall.

By Alexandra Leshner


Tiffany & Co.'s New Atlas and Fall Leather Collections

The iconic brand launches timeless Roman-numeral jewelry and textured handbags.

September 09, 2013

This fall, Tiffany & Co. introduces a new collection of their timeless Roman numeral-themed Atlas jewelry, as well as an elegant line of textured leather handbags by designers Richard Lambertson and John Truex. Both collections are already popular among celebrity trendsetters like Sarah Jessica Parker and Kate Hudson.

Actress Lea Michele debuted the new Atlas style last month, when she wore the hinged bangle in 18-karat rose gold with diamonds ($9,000) while accepting her Teen Choice Award for “Choice TV Actress: Comedy.” Created by renowned Tiffany designer John Loring, the line is inspired by Greek mythology’s Atlas—a god who holds a large spherical globe in his hands—to symbolize its universal impact. Loring’s new sleek, ageless collection builds upon the raised Roman numerals he first used in his antique Atlas watch from 1983, and features matte and polished necklaces, bangles, pendants, earrings, and rings in 18-karat gold (yellow, rose, and white) and sterling silver with diamonds ($250-$9,000).

Lambertson and Truex’s tailored, textured fall bags ($50-$16,500) made with exotic leather skins in rich hues like moss, orchid, and frost, are geared toward the adventurous traveler. Stylish Crosby totes in haircalf and leather, and Chelsea hobos of leather and soft suede, have abundant space for on-the-go necessities. For sophisticated urbanites, the boxy Sabrina frame evening bags in crocodile and textured leather, and metallic Tatiana clutches, are designed for dazzling nights on the town. Fittingly, they’ve already graced the red carpet with Gisele Bündchen, who carried the Sabrina clutch in graphite metallic ($1,195). 

by Jasmin Rosemberg


Girls Night Out at King of Prussia Mall

The East coast's largest shopping center presents a fashionable and fun evening for women.

September 09, 2013

King of Prussia mall, interior.

King of Prussia Mall, owned by Simon Malls, is home to over 400 stores. 

King of Prussia Mall, along with Diet Coke and The British Virgin Islands Tourist Board, presents its first annual Girls Night Out event this Thursday, September 12 (6-8:30 p.m.). The evening will allow shoppers to experience the largest mall on the East coast’s retailers in new and exciting ways.

Fall’s top styles will walk the runway during interactive fashion shows, which are presented by Philadelphia’s top bloggers and set to feature pieces from the likes of C. Wonder. Meanwhile, a Pamper Party will include makeovers, skincare demonstrations, and makeup advice from Neiman Marcus, Lord & Taylor, Sephora, Kiehl’s, and more. To make the evening even sweeter, mall merchants are slated to dish out light bites from Legal Sea Foods, California Pizza Kitchen, and Corner Bakery. Guests can also indulge in Girl’s Night Out cocktails created with Tito’s Handmade Vodka and wines from Chaddsford Winery.  

The exclusive offers don’t stop there—over 25 of the mall’s most popular stores have donated items to stock must-have swag bags for the first 250 attendees who sign up for the Mall Insider Club. Guests will also have the chance to win Simon Malls’ Ultimate Girl’s Night Out prize, which entitles one winner to a trip for two to see and meet Keith Urban during his Light The Fuse tour. A vacation to the British Virgin Islands this fall is also up for grabs. For more information on the event, visit simon.com. 160 N. Gulph Rd., King of Prussia

By Michelle Mass
Photography Courtesy King of Prussia Mall


Liam Neeson to Attend the 20th Anniversary of Schindler's List

The A-list celebrity makes his way to Philadelphia for the benefit screening.

September 06, 2013

On Thursday, September 12, the USC Shoah Foundation’s Institute for Visual History and Education will host the 20th anniversary benefit screening of Steven Spielberg’s Schindler’s List (doors, 6 p.m.; screening, 7 p.m.). In honor of the milestone event, the film’s leading actor and Academy Award nominee, Liam Neeson, will make an appearance at Philadelphia’s Prince Music Theater.

The historic movie, which debuted on December 15, 1993, tells the story of Oskar Schindler (Neeson), a German factory owner living in Poland during World War II. Based on a true story, the heartfelt drama shows Schindler’s transformation from a voracious businessman to a compelling humanitarian as he helps roughly 1,100 Jews escape death at the Auschwitz concentration camp.

After his experience working on Schindler’s List, Steven Spielberg started the USC Shoah Foundation in 1994. The USC Shoah's Institute for Visual History and Education seeks to show the impact of the Holocaust through videotaped interviews with survivors and currently holds the largest such collection in the world—approximately 52,000 testimonials from 57 different countries in 33 languages.

Thursday’s screening, made possible through funding from the Karen & Herb Lotman Foundation, is the first major film event to celebrate the reopening of the storied Prince Music Theater. All proceeds from the event benefit the USC, and the showing on Thursday is the first in a series of viewings being held around the country to support the USC. 

Tickets for the event range from $100 to $1,000, with VIP Packages available for $2,500. Top-tier ticket holders will be invited to an exclusive reception (5:30 p.m.) with Neeson before the screening begins. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit benefitscreening.org or call 215-665-7208. 1412 Chestnut St.

By Michelle Mass
Photographs Courtesy of USC Shoah Foundation


Q&A: Lauren Mantilla, The Style Darling

The Philly fashion blogger shines a light on local fashion, fall trends, and much more.

September 04, 2013

Lauren Mantilla, The Style Darling.
Lauren Mantilla, the fashionista behind The Style Darling blog. 

Lauren Mantilla, a Philadelphia-area fashion maven originally from the South with experience in makeup and hair styling, has taken over the local style scene with her popular fashion blog, The Style Darling. Her expansive style savvy is proved through her blog’s thorough posts—which cover everything from Dîner en Blanc outfit suggestions to how to dress up doctors’ scrubs.

Philadelphia Style sat down with Mantilla to chat about her start in fashion, the importance of social media, and her favorite trends for fall. 

What inspired you to launch The Style Darling?
LAUREN MANTILLA: I have always had such a love for fashion and style and its ability to allow for creative expression of each person's unique individuality, so I created The Style Darling to embrace the latest fashions and trends while celebrating personal style. Some of my favorite posts are centered around one trend or item and how it can be worn to suit several different styles. 

You are also at the helm of Philly FABB. Tell us about that.
LM: Philly FABB is a community of Philadelphia-area fashion and beauty bloggers. It was founded based on the idea of uniting the fashion and beauty voices of Philadelphia and creating genuine relationships between bloggers themselves as well as businesses, brands, and the fashion-loving community of Philadelphia.

How has social media influenced both of these projects?
LM: Social media has been an integral influence for both The Style Darling and Philly FABB [@TheStyleDarling and @PhillyFABB]. Social media is by far the easiest and most direct way to reach your target audience and due to its highly interactive nature, it creates a personal connection to your brand. Receiving immediate feedback from readers is invaluable information that makes a direct impact on how I operate both projects. Social media is resetting the pace for technology. 

Are there any noteworthy trends on your forecast for fall?
LM: Fall is all about prints, texture, and structure. Naturally, the super-brights of summer are going to be put aside in favor of richer tones in bold patterns. Texture is also a notable trend; leather, faux fur, and suede are being featured as signature pieces like skirts and tops instead of just being limited to accessories this season. Structure is also a strong trend this season, gone are the loose silhouettes of summer. Instead opt for very architectural jackets, coats, skirts, and dresses in black or gray.

What is your take on Philadelphia's growing fashion scene?
LM: Philadelphia's growing fashion scene is really exciting right now. Philadelphia's fashion identity is so eclectic—it affords the opportunity and expression for many different kinds of fashion. There are some really amazing creative forces generating a palpable energy for the fashion scene in the city. Philadelphia is definitely a city to watch!

By Alexandra Leshner

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