Tootsies was awash in color—even more so than usual—last Wednesday night when the city's most fashionable set descended on the luxury apparel emporium in full regalia. Anywhere you turned, you were bound to catch a flash of hot pink, bright orange, glittering gold, or maybe even all of the above—bonus points if it appeared in animal print. Of course, it was all in the name of the event: "Fuschia is the New Navy: A Celebration of Color."
The October 9 party doubled as a fashion show and fundraiser: First, it served as the 10th anniversary celebration for The Diaper Foundation, which has helped underprivileged families obtain supplies for their children since Hope Ewing founded the non-profit in 2009.
It also marked the U.S. debut of the Resort 2020 collection from Sachin & Babi, the New York-based label from India-born husband-and-wife designers Sachin and Babi Ahluwalia. As the first retailer to show the heavily '80s-inspired collection, Tootsies received select styles ahead of stores nationwide.
Creative director and co-founder Babi Ahluwalia was present for the sold-out event, which also honored Tootsies store director Shelley Taylor Ludwick for her long-time support of The Diaper Foundation. The following day, Ahluwalia dressed Tootsies customers in her latest designs during one-on-one personal styling appointments.
Ericka Bagwell, Leisa Holland Nelson, Megan Hotze, Torsha Johnson, Shawntell McWilliams, Lisa Oren, Roz Pactor, and Vicki Rizzo served as event hosts. Tootsies creative director Fady Armanious introduced the collection on the runway as "'80s disco chic," full of bright cheetah print, neon colors, statement shoulders, and Sachin & Babi's signature sequins. "The Sachin & Babi woman is independent, confident, and unafraid of color," Armanious said. "And big hair."
While Resort 2020 includes plenty of dresses, there's a greater focus on separates this season for what Armanious deemed "less-formal dressing after dark." Styles range from a $395 high/low blouse with train to a $5,195 strapless embellished ballgown.
Before and after the show, the lively crowd enjoyed signature cocktails, bites from Monarch Hospitality, and music by DJ Senega. All ticket proceeds plus 10 percent of the Tootsies' sales that evening went directly to the Foundation; all told, the event raised $25,430 for the cause.