Fortunately, the main welcome area was filled with so much fun and useful info and activities that even waiting for your next show was pleasurable and rewarding. The many visitors over the five days (which included Dustin Hoffman, Chili Peppers singer Anthony Kiedis and other celebs) could enjoy complimentary skincare samples, makeup and makeovers courtesy of smashbox, ever-present Evian (keeping guests hydrated with H20 during the often-hot days), hand massages, magazines (thick Zink; celeb-cover-and-coverage In Touch), free week passes to Sports Club LA, and more. VIP rooms had even more goodies -- comped food, drinks, giftbags with Redken products, even a water-jet massage machine -- but these areas were strictly for L."A.-list"ers, the well-connected, and those who excel at dropping names.
So who is behind all these fashion shows that so many in-the-know-ers want so badly to go to? One invaluable person who makes everything go off with style is Mally Roncal, Creative Director of the runway shows and spokesperson for leading cosmetics retailer Sephora; she worked behind the scenes with the smashbox makeup team to create designer looks for 36 shows during Fashion Week. As she was prepping models for the DANANG show, Mally told me that smashbox is "the best" -- not only because the people at the company are "incredibly professional, nice, and cooperative", but because she considers their makeup to be of "superb quality", especially under intense lighting situations. Ironically, Ms. Roncal says she rarely gets to see the shows she works on, since she is "always on to the next setup". Not surprising, with so many shows to produce!
WHAT: L.A. Fashion Week (a.k.a. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week)
WHEN: march 29 - april 2, 2004
WHERE: smashbox studios. 8538 warner drive. culver city, CA 90232
WHO: Designers lloyd klein, rachel pally, coco clicks, 2 b free, maria bianco nero, petro zillia, gen art, karanina, mason by michelle mason, samora, tomer, rami kashou, custo barcelona, pegah anvarian, jenni kayne, J maskrey, monah li, sue wong, naqada, heike jarick, sheri bodell, trina turk, lords, davies, frankie b., MartinMartin, single, john sakalis, editte keshishyan, danang, corey lynn calter, richard tyler, shay todd, joe's jeans, heatherette, eduardo lucero, oligo tissew for oliver twist, susana mercedes, enyce / lady enyce sanctuary, louis verdad.
SPONSORS: mercedes-benz, american express, smashbox cosmetics, sephora, redken, evian, silhouette, bluefish concierge, judith ripka, cotton inc., mondrian, asia de cuba, in touch weekly, zink magazine, ca apparel news.
Entertainment and Technology Writer
Publisher & Editor In Chief, The Rose Review
Writer/Reporter, Radio Parallax, KDVS FM
Freelance Writer (LA SPLASH magazine, NOHO LA newspaper)