Closets of pioneer California families are being raided, and not by moths. A chic crowd representing the California Historical Society has decided to stage a "Now and Then" fashion show Sept. 29 at the Beverly Hilton, and it promises to be the rage.
Bobbie Galpin, Maggie Murray, Carole Terry, Sally Boyle and Bitsy Hotaling giggled with anticipation the other noon--cool in the Parkway Grill in Pasadena, hot on Cajun chicken. The CHS is the fourth largest research library of Californiana and Western history in the state, and includes rare books, manuscripts, photos and memorabilia.
Better, even, it has connections, and some fun historical couture is being rigged. For instance, Teresa Longyear will wear her great-grandmother's 1890 black silk tiny-waisted gown with a bonnet that ties under the chin and a matching parasol with a lace drop. Polly Goodan has come up with her grandmother's '20s vintage beaded dress. Jan Clayton and Phoebe Vaccaro have uncovered some fun "shimmy" dresses. Florence Bamming's 1910 dark gray Marlborough School gym suit with the big bloomer legs will be on the fashion ramp. So will the late Mrs. William Taylor McArthur's 1900 Smith College graduation gown, modeled by her great-granddaughter, Elizabeth Hotaling Watson--or will sister Elita Hotaling win the honor of modeling? Julie Masterson will model a white satin dress her mother wore in the L.A. social scene in the '30s. Sally Boyle has offered the voluminous brocaded opera cloak worn by Effie Hope Hinman in San Francisco.
The "Now" part is being sauced up by Maggie Murray. She invited designer Luis Estevez to present "glitter and glitz" appropriate for the upcoming holiday seasons. As luck would have it, Estevez has his own California historical connections: He is descended from the first viceroy of New Spain (Mexico), Mateo de Galdez, and also is descended from Jose de Galvez, who represented the King of Spain and gave Junipero Serra his marching orders to set up the mission system in the New World.
For Murray, coordinating this fashion show is nostalgic. As former fashion director of the May Company, she coordinated the first fashion show ever held in the Grand Ballroom of the Hilton. Fred Hayman, who went on to build, then sell, Giorgio, was the maitre d'.
The ladies expect 500. In addition, First Century Families, now headed by Gretchen Dockweiler (who will model in the show), will be saluted for their work with family oral histories.
Bitsy, Jane Simpson and Phoebe Vaccaro are collecting patrons in abundance. Diamond Circle donors include Paquita Machris and the Durfee Foundation. And the Gold Circle is being enhanced by Alice O'Neill Avery, Gini Braun, Michelle Crahan, James and Linda Dickason, Vi Nason, Emily Peck, Mary Jensen, Christine Shirley, Joni Smith, Henry and Caroline Singleton, and Ruth von Platen.
Always one to support California (her great-great uncle, Henry Hazard, was mayor of Los Angeles), Bobbie Galpin has ordered California Brut Champagne and California white wine for the menu.
HOT CAPERS: Can you wait? To quote this invitation: "Raymond Chandler, a man who wrote about crime, and Bugsy Siegel, a man who lived it, met in Los Angeles at the Union Station. It was a meeting that forever altered the course of human destiny. The meeting was witnessed by Bugsy's sister, who left a small brown suitcase which was never recovered; Chandler's secretary, who got lost for 20 minutes; a Treasury agent investigating Siegel's business affairs; Mickey Stefano, small-time hood; a known stool pigeon; plus Taper Almondson, part-time film actress, full-time socialite and believed to be Bugsy's sometime girlfriend."
Well, The American Diabetes Assn. Los Angeles chapter will unfold this caper Sept. 26 at Union Station. The old Fred Harvey Restaurant will be opened for the first time in many a moon. The main arcade and south patio will be transformed in 1940s Art Deco delight for all the attending would-be Miss Marples and Nero Wolfes.
The evening is being staged by Arthur Simon, who last month hosted the kickoff. Sunny Deutschman and Barbara Prober are caper co-chairmen. Rudy Varon and his orchestra will play for dancing. The two past capers have raised nearly half a million.
STARRY: The spectacular Filmland Center has been chosen by Los Angeles Beautiful for its "A Starry, Starry Night" Sept. 25. Bee Nassour reveals that Helen Reddy will receive the Beautiful Life Award for work in the preservation of parklands. Other top awards will go to Chevron USA, Inc (Owen F. Murphy will accept) and to Transamerica Occidental Life (Donald Shellgren will receive).
A variety show by the American Center for Music Theater will add, well, variety, to the black-tie dinner dance.