After a Fashion

Your Style Avatar gets operatic in tiger stripes

Joanie Bentzin and her pro partner Danny Davila practice for their turn at the Center for Child Protection's Dancing With the Stars Austin fundraiser coming up on Dec. 6.
Joanie Bentzin and her pro partner Danny Davila practice for their turn at the Center for Child Protection's Dancing With the Stars Austin fundraiser coming up on Dec. 6. (Photo by Seabrook/

THE AGENDA Wednesday, I'd taken my regular walker Jaclyn (Jacki-OH) Havlak with me to the David Yurman benefit for Dancing With the Stars Austin (coming Sunday, Dec. 6). We were a bit more than fashionably late, but manager Awilda Ronemous and Jeremy Rathke treated us like royalty anyway. Yurman has such great service, I'd like to move in there. Especially after Rathke presented me with an industrial-sized bottle of the David Yurman fragrance for men. Oh. My. God. So heavenly. The reason we were more than fashionably late is that once we got to the Domain, we stopped momentarily at the St. Thomas boutique. Momentarily. Yeah, sure. OK. We all know, of course, that Tomas Estebes and Riley Estebes de Silva have the most glamorous gowns (and clients!) in town, but alas, for a 6-foot-1-inch glamazon such as myself, there was nothing that would have worked, but I drooled all over the dresses anyway. Riley had Jacki try on a peacock-feathered cape which was to die for, but then, from the back room, came Tomas, who whispered in my ear, "Try this on, darling." I did. It was a magnificently voluminous opera coat, a floor-length, A-line confection of tiger skin and black velvet. Any woman I know would have been swallowed up in it, but on a model of my stature, it was absolutely incredible. $6,000. Um, maybe not. As I ruefully slipped off the glorious raiment, Tomas said, "Why don't you wear it to the Runway to Heaven fashion show on Saturday?" Riley told Jacki to do the same with the peacock cape, and our collective jaws hit the ground. "Really?" we said. Oh. My. God. We'd be the most glamorous there (and prayed for fabulous seats).

Later, we dropped by the L Style/G Style second anniversary party, more than fashionably late again, but apparently we didn't miss much, because the party was going full-strength long after the invitation said it would be over.

Thursday, Jacki and I went to a private party at Fred and Jodi Zipp's house. He's the editor of the Statesman, and she, well, she is delightful and beautiful. Their gorgeous new Dick Clark-designed home is spectacular. The party was to announce the Statesman's Glossy 8 winners (Sylvia Orozco, Christine Perrault Moline, Elizabeth and Benjamin Serrato, Trent Thurman, Coi Burruss, Maria Groten, Nancy Scanlan, and Andrea McWilliams ... wait, isn't that nine?).

Friday was the Doug Sahm birthday tribute at Antone's. A bevy of hometown stars was there, and Antone's was the most Texas place to be in Texas that night. Speaking of which, the Help Clifford Help Kids benefit is tonight, Thursday, Nov. 12, at the Austin Music Hall. See for info... Saturday was the Runway to Heaven fashion show at the Austonian. I wore the tiger opera coat, and Jacki glistened in a white lace and black feathered ensemble that was easily as beautiful as anything on the runway. I hated the seating arrangement at the show, but the show itself was reasonably fun... Sunday, I rested. 'Tis the season, as they say, but as exhausted as I am from this week, it may be a very low-key season for me.

YIPPEE! Huge congratulations to former Texas Monthly Editor Evan Smith as he launched the Texas Tribune ( Even though my sister Margaret and I are founding members, we were precommitted and didn't attend, but I hear the party was a rip-roaring success anyway. Way to go, Evan!

UPCOMING Next Saturday, Nov. 14, Jeff Strange and Downstairs Apparel present the Funk Aid for Africa release party, benefiting NextAid. Go to for details... Also on the same night, a benefit for the Austin Children's Shelter will be held at the Four Seasons. Great cause, great food, great company, and great clothes always make this an event to remember. See for more info... Kappie Bliss' store, Beyond Tradition, is featuring a trunk show for the Catherine Nicole line of men's jewelry (tonight, Thursday, Nov. 12, 6-9pm). The show benefits AIDS Services of Austin, and the collection is gorgeous. I got a sneak peek of it and even wore some of it to the Runway to Heaven show – so divine I don't want to return it.

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Austin style, Jaclyn Havlak, Jacki-OH, David Yurman, Dancing With the Stars, Awilda Ronomous, Jeremy Rathke, David Yurman fragrance, St. Thomas Boutique, peacock-feathered cape, opera coat, floor-length, A-line, tiger skin, black velvet, Runway to Heaven, Doug Sahm Anniversary, Help Clifford Help Kids, Runway to Heaven, Austonian

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