CHSO July 2015 : Page 34

[NOW IN CHIC AGO ] ON THE SHELVES WRAPPED UP CHICAGO AUTHOR GIOIA DILIBERTO PUBLISHES THE LIFE STORY OF AN ICONIC FASHION DESIGNER. By Jessie Sardina | Portrait by Katrina Wittkamp FROCK STAR Gioia Diliberto, here in DVF, captures the drama of the designer’s life. “There have been very few items of clothing that define an era,” says Gioia Diliberto , Chicago-based author of the just-released Diane von Furstenberg: A Life Unwrapped ($29, HarperCollins). “The wrap dress was for the career woman who also wanted to be sexy—it represented a kind of life that a lot of women had or wanted to have.” Indeed, if you were a woman of style in the 1970s, there was almost certainly a DVF jersey printed wrap dress hanging in your closet. The slinky frock, with its tastefully plunging neckline and waist-hugging silhouette, was the uniform for a new kind of empowered, liberated woman—the kind who wore lipstick, sipped gin and asked for a raise. “Feel like a woman, wear a dress,” von Furstenberg famously advised, and women across the globe enthusiastically took heed; by 1976, more than a million of the iconic dresses had flown off the racks. As a young newspaper reporter, Diliberto herself once traipsed the streets of New York City in a leopard-print version. But the new book’s inspiration came more recently. “I had just finished writing a novel about Coco Chanel [2008’s The Collection: A Novel ], so I was hunting around for my next subject,” she says. “I was at a vintage store in SoHo when I came upon this wrap dress. Just like that, it hit me: Diane von Furstenberg.” Profiling intriguing women was familiar territory— Diliberto has previously penned biographies of Chicago reformer Jane Addams; the first “celebutante,” Brenda Frazier; and Hadley Richardson, Hemingway’s first wife—and von Furstenberg’s sometimes-shocking story as the daughter of a Holocaust survivor who grows up to found a fashion empire proved a fitting subject. The countless hours Diliberto spent with the designer have yielded not just the revealing story of the grande dame of style, but a compelling history of the intersection of fashion, popular culture and, most prominently, feminism. “[DVF] was ‘leaning in’ long before that was a phrase,” Diliberto says. “I think her life epitomizes the trajectory of women’s role in society. She’s a pioneer.” and songwriter DRAKE dined at Chicago Cut Steakhouse while in town for his recent concert. Desperate Housewives actor and former Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse waiter JAMES DENTON was spotted at the restaurant’s annual 5K. Film director SPIKE LEE and NICK CANNON dined together at Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab. JOSH SEGARRA , from the USA Network comedy series Sirens , delivered the first pitch at the Cubs vs. Nationals continued… 34 CS JULY 2015 CELEB SPOTTING Rapper GIOIA DILIBERTO PHOTO BY KATRINA WITTKAMP

Now In Chicago Now



FROCK STAR Gioia Diliberto, here in DVF, captures the drama of the designer’s life.

ON THE SHELVES

WRAPPED UP
CHICAGO AUTHOR GIOIA DILIBERTO PUBLISHES THE LIFE STORY OF AN ICONIC FASHION DESIGNER.

By Jessie Sardina | Portrait by Katrina Wittkamp

“There have been very few items of clothing that define an era,” says Gioia Diliberto, Chicago-based author of the just-released Diane von Furstenberg: A Life Unwrapped ($29, HarperCollins). “The wrap dress was for the career woman who also wanted to be sexy—it represented a kind of life that a lot of women had or wanted to have.” Indeed, if you were a woman of style in the 1970s, there was almost certainly a DVF jersey printed wrap dress hanging in your closet. The slinky frock, with its tastefully plunging neckline and waist-hugging silhouette, was the uniform for a new kind of empowered, liberated woman—the kind who wore lipstick, sipped gin and asked for a raise. “Feel like a woman, wear a dress,” von Furstenberg famously advised, and women across the globe enthusiastically took heed; by 1976, more than a million of the iconic dresses had flown off the racks. As a young newspaper reporter, Diliberto herself once traipsed the streets of New York City in a leopard-print version. But the new book’s inspiration came more recently. “I had just finished writing a novel about Coco Chanel [2008’s The Collection: A Novel], so I was hunting around for my next subject,” she says. “I was at a vintage store in SoHo when I came upon this wrap dress. Just like that, it hit me: Diane von Furstenberg.” Profiling intriguing women was familiar territory— Diliberto has previously penned biographies of Chicago reformer Jane Addams; the first “celebutante,” Brenda Frazier; and Hadley Richardson, Hemingway’s first wife—and von Furstenberg’s sometimes-shocking story as the daughter of a Holocaust survivor who grows up to found a fashion empire proved a fitting subject. The countless hours Diliberto spent with the designer have yielded not just the revealing story of the grande dame of style, but a compelling history of the intersection of fashion, popular culture and, most prominently, feminism. “[DVF] was ‘leaning in’ long before that was a phrase,” Diliberto says. “I think her life epitomizes the trajectory of women’s role in society. She’s a pioneer.”




CELEB SPOTTING Rapper and songwriter DRAKE dined at Chicago Cut Steakhouse while in town for his recent concert. Desperate Housewives actor and former Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse waiter JAMES DENTON was spotted at the restaurant’s annual 5K. Film director SPIKE LEE and NICK CANNON dined together at Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab. JOSH SEGARRA, from the USA Network comedy series Sirens, delivered the first pitch at the Cubs vs. Nationals game accompanied by his On Your Feet! Musical co-star ANA VILLAFANE. Former President BILL CLINTON was spotted having lunch at Joe Fish. MICHAEL MADSEN hosted a screening of his film Reservoir Dogs at the Public Chicago Hotel and dined afterward at Pump Room. JOHN CUSACK made a stop at RM Champagne Salon for a drink. Goth rocker MARILYN MANSON dined at RPM Italian before heading to Three Dots and a Dash. –Annabel Brooks and Jake Miller



PUTTIN’ ON THE RITZ
Friday, 9PM Ask anyone who attended the Maryville Academy annual gala (including Gov. Bruce Rauner and designers Wes Gordon and Andrew Gn, just to name a few): The night really got started at the luxe afterparty. Gala guests, including chair-couple Mike and Kelly Golden, had much to celebrate—the evening at The Ritz-Carlton Chicago raised a record $310,000 for the Maryville Crisis Nursery, a West Side emergency shelter that assists families and children. The energetic crowd sipped cocktails and sang along as U2 tribute band The Joshua Tree brought the house down. If you closed your eyes, you’d believe Bono himself had shown up. –Chandler Rollins



MONSIGNOR MICHAEL BOLAND

River North, CEO, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago

“I was very humbled to be honored by Maryville Academy. Sister Cathy and her staff are so dedicated to the children and their care. It is a great privilege to be a part of their sacred mission.”

JACKIE MAGNER

Winnetka, stay-at-home mom and volunteer

“This was a fabulous evening, honoring many who serve the Maryville Crisis Nursery, topped off with a great band in The Ritz- Carlton Hotel. The crisis nursery is funded completely by donations, so I was thrilled to support the amazing organization!”

TINA MANTIS

Glenview, optometrist

“I was proud to be included in this event. Maryville Academy is a worthy cause. With all of life’s obstacles, Maryville provides opportunities to tackle those hurdles with dignity.”

DINA BAIR

Chicago, anchor, WGN Midday News

“It is amazing tonight to see so many people lending a hand with such generosity! I am honored to play a small part in such a herculean effort to support children.”

WES GORDON

New York City, designer and owner, Wes Gordon

“First of all, I love Mike and Kelly Golden, and any party that they are involved with is bound to be a great time! Everyone looked beautiful, the speeches were moving, the setting beautiful and the band was fantastic. I’m running out of adjectives, but, in short, it was a fabulous night!”


TRENDWATCH

GARDEN PARTY
LOOK NO FURTHER THAN YOUR OWN BACKYARD FOR SUMMER STYLE INSPIRATION. FROM MAGICAL WINGED INSECTS TO FLOWERS OF EVERY DIMENSION, MOTHER NATURE HAS NEVER LOOKED BETTER.

By Jacqueline Z. Grossnickle



NATURAL WONDERS 1. Black velvet box bag with embellishments, $7,995, by Dolce & Gabbana at Neiman Marcus, 312.642.5900 2. Camugarden georgette dress, $3,890, by Valentino, and Celia Birtwell Camugarden brocade print boots, $1,975, by Valentino Garavani, both at Neiman Marcus, 312.642.5900; and B-Rockstud multicolor striped calf leather bag, $3,745, by Valentino Garavani at Valentino, 212. 772.6969 3. Jade crystal branch necklace, $745, by Oscar de la Renta at Saks Fifth Avenue, 312.944.6500 4. Sapphire and diamond Disco Butterfly watch, price upon request, at Graff, 312.604.1000 5. Floral-embellished coil sandal, $1,250, by Rene Caovilla at Neiman Marcus, 312.642.5900 6. Pink floral sunglasses, $395, by Gucci at Solstice Sunglasses, 312.274.1617 7. Dragonfly clip featuring yellow sapphires and diamonds set in 18K white and yellow gold, $29,400, at Van Cleef & Arpels, 312.944.8988 8. Rose bagatelle bracelet in white gold, yellow gold, diamonds, fancy yellow diamonds and emeralds, price upon request, by Dior Fine Jewelry at Dior, 212.931.2950

FAB 5

Getting Out

AT THESE ENDURING (AND STILLFRESH) CLASSICS, ALFRESCO DINING NEVER GOES OUT OF STYLE.

– Sarah Freeman

1.

Coco Pazzo Cafe

Pan-seared duck breast over polenta is served with a side of premier people-watching. Scope Michigan Avenue shoppers while sipping on one of 15 wines by the glass or 100 by the bottle. Wine Director Tamra Weiss recommends Castello di Bossi, a light and refreshing rosé ($40). 636 N. St. Clair St., 312.664.2777, cocopazzochicago.com

2.

Le Colonial

The second-floor veranda channels French-colonial Vietnam with palm trees, iron railings and ceiling fans circulating the summer breeze. Go guilt-free with one of the low-calorie cocktails, such as the Mekong Sunset (Ketel One Citroen, tangerine-ginger tea and muddled orange). 937 N. Rush St., 312.255.0088, lecolonialchicago.com

3.

Lula Cafe

For 15 years, this Logan Square gem has pioneered the patio-to-table movement. Flower boxes filled with herbs and edible flowers provide beauty as well as inspiration for a six-course vegetarian tasting menu ($48). And if the summer nights get a bit chilly, just ask for a complimentary blanket. 2537 N. Kedzie Ave., 773.489.9554, lulacafe.com

4.

Perennial Virant

Chef Paul Virant takes advantage of his patio’s proximity to Green City Market for his ever-changing menu, which offers buttered radishes with lemon pickled turnips and asparagus salad with marinated feta. 1800 N. Lincoln Ave., 312.981.7070, perennialchicago.com

5.

Piccolo Sogno

Under the shade of an ivy-covered tree in this charming “secret garden,” enjoy a seasonal Italian wine list and rustic dishes—from squash blossoms stuffed with fontina, tomato and olive oil puree ($11) to the signature ravioli ($16). 464 N. Halsted St., 312.421.0077, piccolosognorestaurant.com



HEAT WAVE

A lunch on Le Colonial’s veranda transports guests to Vietnam.

PASSING THROUGH

HAPPY DAYS


STEPPING UP

Composer Bobby McFerrin takes the podium July 8 at Ravinia.

By Joel Reese It’s tempting to think of Bobby McFerrin as just the guy who gave us 1988’s earworm “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” Yeah, don’t do that. Instead, think of him as the brilliant composer who has won 10 Grammy Awards. Or as a guest conductor who has led orchestras all over the world. Or as an educator who has visited schools across the country to teach the importance of music. Or maybe just do this: Go see him at Ravinia when he conducts Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess July 8. Originally written for African-American singers, Porgy is more than just a Gershwin opera for McFerrin: It’s also, he says, an intensely personal project that had a huge impact on his life.

“Not only did my father sing the role of Porgy [in the 1959 film], he moved our family to California from New York to take the job,” McFerrin recalls. “When he got the call to sing Porgy, the music played in our house all the time, and so did all the rest of Gershwin’s work, everything. It became the soundtrack to a particular time in our lives.”

McFerrin says music was a crucial part of his childhood, and his goal now is to pass along music’s power through his conducting and educational work. For this performance, he has been especially pleased to work with Josephine Lee and the Chicago Children’s Choir, also on the bill.

“I was lucky enough to grow up in a house filled with music, to sing Bach in church as a kid, to listen to top- 40 radio and symphonies and jazz and opera,” he says.“My mom used to fill my room with Mozart if I didn’t feel well. So I know what it can do. I think music has the power to transform us.” 8PM, tickets $25-$95, 200 Ravinia Park Road, Highland Park, 847.266.5100, ravinia.org


FIRST LOOK

Lhuillier’s Launch



PRETTY IN PINK Kate roll bag with tassel, $1,895, and Maxime heels, $1,695, both at Monique Lhuillier, moniquelhuillier.com

Monique Lhuillier burst onto the bridal market in 1996 and quickly established herself as one of the most revered wedding dress designers of all time. Th en she took the ready-to-wear runways by storm. Never one to slow down, the designer is destined to be a triple threat as she introduces her first line of accessories. “I’ve wanted to do this for a while, but it was a matter of finding the right time,” says Lhuillier. Fresh and romantic, her debut collection is a deliciously feminine mix of skyscraping stilettos and sleek minaudières. Highlights include rose-gold sandals with sultry caged heels and a bedazzled satin clutch complete with a charming tassel (both shown here). What will the designer come up with next? We’ll be waiting. – JZG

MY CHICAGO



Show Girl

Whitney Reynolds just might be Chicago’s next queen of talk. The native Oklahoman with a friendly Southern-style persona is on the rise as the star of her own Lakeshore PBS vehicle, The Whitney Reynolds Show, which each week tackles a serious subject—Reynolds is filming episodes about food allergies and suicide prevention, to air this fall—in an approachable way that brings viewers into the discussion. (Watch on Monday nights at 6:30.) When she’s not in front of the camera, the Lakeview resident treats her adopted city like the small town she’s from: Be nice, get to know everyone and eat really well. –Amalie Drury



Secret Garden

“My husband and I love The Terrace Rooftop at the Conrad Chicago for pre-dinner wine and martinis—it’s our hidden gem. They have live music with local guys playing. One time I requested Whitney Houston and got a guitar rendition.” 521 N. Rush St.,312. 645.1500, conradchicagohotel.com

Country Living

“Barn & Company—the barbecue place in Lincoln Park— makes me feel at home. I always order the fried pickles.” 950 W. Wrightwood Ave., 773.832.4000, barnandcompany.com



Market Watch

“ The Green City Market in Lincoln Park is a Saturday family tradition for us.We love to cook at home, so we go to get our produce for the week—why are the cucumbers so much bigger there?!—and I always end up with a big bunch of peonies.” 1817 N. Clark St., greencitymarket.org



Caffeine Fix

“We honeymooned in Costa Rica and fell in love with the coffee there, so now we’re coffee junkies. The Coffee & Tea Exchange has changed the way we buy—they have barrels full of beans and really knowledgeable people.You’d think you’re picking out fine wine.” 3311 N. Broadway,773. 528.2241, coffeeandtea.com


Jacket Required

“Marie Whitney [wife of Cubs honcho Th eo Epstein] is a good friend, and I love searching for my next blazer or scarf at her store, Two Penny Blue. Plus, with every jacket you buy, a schoolgirl in Africa gets a new uniform.” 3738 N. Southport Ave., 872.802.0158, 2pennyblue.com


LOCAL LUXE

In the Bag



When her eldest son started to fill out his college applications, Julie Neff , a former fashionmerchandising graduate, was inspired to design a second act. In one short year, she has made her J. Markell collection the “it” bags for chic Chicagoans. “Clothing, you rotate, but accessories allow you to have a diff erent outfit every day,” Neff says. “It sets the tone for your attitude and mood.” While the luxe totes are collection favorites, many busy girls swear by the clutches, perfect for essentials. Th e Mara and Lara (pictured), in stingray, also have an attachable gunmetal chain that allows you to leave it on as “jewelry” when you’re sitting at dinner, or hands-free at a concert or cocktail party. $195-$2,495, jmarkelldesigns.com –Barri Leiner Grant

Read the full article at http://digital.modernluxury.com/article/+Now+In+Chicago+Now/2043366/263852/article.html.

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