By 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 24, a Divas Shop for Opera Shopping and Cocktails benefit for the New York City Opera, held at a “pop-up” shop on Madison Avenue, had turned into a fashion frenzy. Ravenous shoppers sprawled two floors, prowling the racks and grabbing Manolos, Louboutins, Dior frocks, and more. A dressing room even collapsed.
“This is always one of the best parties of the year,” said socialite and event co-chair Lorry Newhouse. “More than money, it generates publicity, exposure. The real money is the people who create the exposure.”
But there was a lot of money changing hands. “It looks like there’s a lot of good stuff,” said socialite Gillian Miniter, scanning the room. “I see lot of people who look to be doing very well.”
One Birkin-toting shopper showed off the yellow eyelet Marc Jacobs skirt she had snagged to artist Chantel Foretich, who exclaimed, “That is fabulous. Fabulous! How did I miss that?” A Chanel tweed jacket sold for $125, a Chloé satchel for $350, and a Marc Jacobs quilted tote for $250.
Style legend Elsa Klensch took home a green pressed-leather evening bag and a black-and-white jacket. “I love jackets that go over black pants, black shirts,” she said. “It was Donna Karan’s way of dressing.” What do you mean was, honey?
“If you can shop and money can go to charity, it’s a win-win,” said 7th on Sixth director Fern Mallis.
Before she hurried off to Gen Art’s 15th anniversary benefit, Real Housewife Alex McCord bought a leather dress. “People are always on the hunt for something new, and this is a less expensive way to do it,” she said. “And it’s also for a great cause!”