PINKMEMO: Tory Burch Fashion Show at the Field Museum

Amy Friends Tory Burch
Kelly Ryan O’Brien, Kelsey Kreiling, Jena Gambaccini, and me

My PinkMemo post about the Tory Burch fashion show I attended went up yesterday! Sorry for the delay, there was this little holiday called Thanksgiving that got in the way. Yes, ritualistic communal binge eating comes before fashion blogging in my book, every time. The event was held in the soaring atrium of The Field Museum. Models donned the Spring 2012 Tory Burch collection to strut down the catwalk under the shadows of Sue, the world’s largest Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton. Glistening marble walls formed the perfect backdrop to the shimmering sequins and flirty silhouettes – inspired by Deauville, no less – that dominated the show. 

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Tory invited me backstage to interview her right before the show began. We chatted about her first ever runway show this past September when she showed her Spring 2012 collection at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. Hard to believe she’s always done presentations, right? She said it was finally the right time. In an industry obsessed with speed, youth, and the transient, it’s refreshing to meet a designer who appreciates patience, hard work, and establishment. Tory told me she also felt it was the right time to open a true flagship store in Chicago to properly serve her strong client base. I can attest to this as I see women of all ages rocking her pieces across the city. Chicago loves Tory and she loves us back, which is why she partnered with American Express to produce such an extraordinary show.

Maria Cornejo Finale S/S 2012

Maria Cornejo
I’ve been really busy with statistics and applying for jobs so I still haven’t had a chance to upload photos from the fashion shows I went to in New York. Until then, here’s a great photo of Maria Cornejo at the finale of her Spring 2012 runway show at Milk Studios.

VIDEO: Dries Van Noten Spring 2012

October 2, 2011  |  Inspiration, Runway, Video
Dries Van Noten is a designer whose work I am just now becoming familiar with. It isn’t that I didn’t know who he was, it’s just that his work never felt appropriate for me as a grad student. Now that I’m searching for my first job as an executive (I’m preparing to graduate from DePaul with an M.S. in management), I am broadening my horizons in terms of designers who will fit into my wardrobe.


When I watched the video above of Dries Van Noten’s Spring 2012 runway show I “oooohhed” and “ahhhhed” aloud over the phenomenal city-scape prints. I enrolled in metropolitan planning as an elective during my graduate program, a class I greatly enjoyed. I am obsessed with cities and urban landscapes. I attribute that to my childhood in New York and subsequent adolescence in Fayetteville, Arkansas, which allowed me to daydream about city-scapes for nine years. When something is familiar yet distant, as cities became to me as I grew up, there is a sense of fascination that develops in its absence. Brief trips to Chicago and New York as a teenager only whetted my thirst for the urban lifestyle. It is in that context that my deep and abiding love for the city grew, and nothing was more enchanting to me than the way a city looks at night. To say that the night sky of a metropolis is magical would be the understatement of the century. It is the representation of humanity’s collective ability to dream into existence a luminescent artificial landscape. The physical environment of a city, literally glowing with energy, embodies the collective ability of engineers and architects to marry ideas to reality. What better source of inspiration for a fashion designer seeking to clothe the modern woman?


Van Noten used pictures of nightime cityscapes taken by noted photographer James Reeve and applied them to impeccably tailored tops and dresses. Elevating conceptual fashion even further, he used what looked to be Swarovski crystals in a grid-like smattering across a skirt, echoing the imagery of Reeve’s work. For me, this collection was everything I could have dreamed of for a fashionable yet work-appropriate wardrobe. The result was a spectacular opus to the modern urban woman, a collection of highly wearable but magnificent clothing.