Sunday, September 29, 2013

Zang Toi's Showroom Grand Opening Party

Designer Zang Toi and me

Fresh off the heels of his mega successful Spring 2014 fashion show, renowned Fashion Designer Zang Toi hosted an extravagant soiree to celebrate his new showroom location on the east side of New York. It was a privilege for me to be invited to both his fashion show and now his private celebration at his showroom right across Rockefeller Center. 

I arrived an hour into the start of the party due to a Summer downpour in New York which caused a lack of available cabs. Zang’s showroom was already full of mingling society guests, reporters and photographers. Zang was one of the first people to greet me. I can’t describe what an incredible feeling it was to know that one of the most iconic designers in the world knew who I was. It was a moment that I'll always treasure. Zang was dressed in his classic black suit and white shirt. 

Zang is truly a designer with the midus touch. Anything he produces shines with extraordinary opulence fit for a royal. In fact, Zang himself was recently given the royal title of Datuk Zang Toi by the King of Malaysia, Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah. Zang is originally from Krai in Kelantan in Malaysia.

Zang came to New York at the age of 20 where he studied at the distinguished Parsons School of Design. In August 1989, he opened his atelier and soon after, U.S Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour featured Zang in March 1990 issue and was one of the first Asian designers championed by the renowned editor. In 1990, Zang was awarded the Mouton Cadet Young Designer of the Year which recognizes the top, young, U.S. designer of the year.

Since that time, Zang's work has been featured in major publications such as Vogue, Vanity Fair, Time, Newsweek, The New York Times, Financial Times, etc. Not only has he dressed Hollywood celebrities such as Sharon Stone, Elizabeth Taylor, Farrah Fawcett, Kristie Alley, Patti LaBelle, Gong Li, Eva Longoria, Fergie (Black Eyed Peas) and Heather Graham, but has also created luxurious wardrobe for philanthropists and royalty including Melinda Gates and Saudi Princess Haifa Bandar Al Saud.

I wore a embellished one shoulder lace sheath dress dress by Eliza J which I paired with rose gold plated earrings and a swarovsky crystal elements ring by GLITTERRINGS

My jewels were the perfect match to the beautiful crystal chandeliers that illuminated Zang Toi's showroom. I was going for an old Hollywood look for the evening. 

Guests were treated to a delicious selection of homemade Malaysian hors d' oeuvres that were placed on bamboo leaves. In addition, a selection of mixed cocktails were being served. It was my first experience trying Malaysian food and the foodie in me couldn't resist sampling almost everything on the endlessly long table of treats.

My lovely friend Robyn was able to come along with me for the evening. Robyn is one of my best friends. We don't really have a chance to see each other during the year because she's a lawyer in Miami. I was so excited to be able to spend time with her this Summer when she vacationed in New York. 

I ran into Stephen “TheSalonGuy”, a long-time friend that I met at fashion week a couple years ago. 

With 20 years of experience as a hairstylist and media personality, Stephen Marinaro, TheSalonGuy™, focuses on bringing fashion, beauty, inspiration, and entertainment to millions of people. He reaches his millions of followers through television, internet and radio. His highly viewed YouTube channel,, features styling tutorials, motivational tools, and special event coverage. 

I was so excited to see Beatrice Pomper, a lovely new friend I made thanks to Zang Toi. Zang seated Beatrice and me next to each other at his fashion show just a few days earlier. Beatrice wore a stunning yellow ombre dress with silver shoes. Quite a perfect color combination for Summer! 

Next, I ran into hairstylist Cynthia Varel from the famous Eiji Salon on Madison Avenue. 

I collaborated with the Eiji Salon a few months earlier and Cynthia was the incredible stylist that did a meticulous dry cut on my hair. We ended up doing a whole interview about the experience that you can read here

Cynthia came with Eiji, the revolutionary dry-cut pioneer and owner of Eiji Salon. Cynthia was dressed in a stunning Zang Toi concoction of course! 

I chatted with with both Cynthia and Eiji for a bit. Eiji had mentioned that he enjoyed the article that I wrote about his salon. As a writer it was so gratifying hear because I work hard to ensure that my features are of value to whom ever I collaborate with and of course to my loyal readers and fans. I want my work to be read and remembered for years to come. 

Making my way through the crowd I spotted the lovely Mrs. Anzhelika Steen Olsen, owner of a luxury handbag line called Eliann Couture. Anzhelika always dresses to impress. She reminds me of a Russian Angelina Jolie, both in looks and fashion.

One of my favorite people to meet at the event was Cassandra Seidenfeld. Ms. Seidenfeld is a known actress, entrepreneur, philanthropist and a constant fixture in the New York social scene. Cassandra was so sweet in person and I’m really looking forward to seeing her again at future events.

The highlight of my evening was of course the moment Jean Shaffirof asked me to come take a photo with her and Zang. I have such admiration for Jean’s philanthropic work and of course Zang, one of the most talented designers in the world. Our color combination fit perfectly as if this moment was meant to be from my all white dress, to Zang’s black and white attire and Mrs. Shaffirof's all black Zang Toi gown. Photographers congregated to take our photo for what felt like a scene out of a movie. 

I walked away smiling ear to ear at the magical time I had that evening. It was truly what dreams are made of and I had a chance to live them for those phenomenal moments at Zang Toi’s beautiful new showroom. 

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