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ON VIEW / MARY LOU LOPER

Saying Goodby to Summer, Hello to Fall

September 16, 1993|MARY LOU LOPER

Just as tout Los Angeles shoves summer whites to the rear of the closet and the ensuing gaps appear absolutely perfect for fall fashion acquisitions, the women of the Costume Council of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art hurried back from summer vacations and met 500 strong to see Gianfranco Ferre's fall collection at the Regent Beverly Wilshire.

There was a tad of disappointment that Ferre wasn't there, but he did assemble his entire collection in Italy and send it intact to Neiman Marcus.

Suzane LeMay did the flowers--fuchsias with avocados surrounded by wreaths of pepper berries. There was Ferre perfume at each place, and whoever got the one with the berry won the centerpiece. That was the idea of Mary Martin, who chaired the event for Council chair Jane Ackerman.

Martin does things in A style (having just received an A, too, on her music video at USC film school). She cooed "molto gra z ie" to N/M's President John Martens and blew him a kiss of thanks. Of course, John's wife, Bridget, was there. And so were other fashionables, most in dark linens, lunching on wild mushroom ravioli, rosemary chicken and raspberry sorbet.

In the crowd was Susy Niven, who had just flown in from Sun Valley, Ida. She reported the weather there most of the summer was pretty awful, but certainly not bad enough to thwart the $267,000-net wine auction for the Sun Valley Center for the Arts and Humanities in Ketchum co-chaired by former Angeleno Peter Smith and former Pasadenan Joan Anawalt. Nor was the weather bad enough to nix the invitational golf tournament that Angelenos Susie and Norman Barker hosted for dozens of California pals, including Dody and Otis Booth, and Joni and Clark Smith.

More having a wonderful fall reunion at the luncheon: Anne Johnson, back from Scotland; Joan Hotchkis, rested after St. Malo; Mary Milner, ebullient after Southern France, and Timi Freshman, Dee Sherwood, Hannah Carter and Annette O'Malley.

Gung-ho Martin plans a terrific Costume Council season--including faux jewelry king Kenneth Jay Lane, Gloria Vanderbilt and Bill Blass in an interview with fashion impresario Jack Miles of I. Magnin.

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VAROOM!: Hot rods, the bad-boy renegades of car-dom and a symbol of the youthful rebellion of the 1950s, are on scholarly display at the Art Center College of Design in the Alyce de Roulet Williamson Gallery. Hot rods developed in California--actually in the 1930s--when daredevil youths raced roadsters on dry desert lake beds.

The show, curated by Pat Gahahl, runs through Oct. 16. On hand opening night were Alyce Williamson as well as collectors Bruce and Raylene Meyer, and Tom and Jacque Connor.

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IMPERIAL: Chinese imperial robes from the Pacific Asia Museum's collection will provide elegance at the Festival of the Autumn Moon on Oct.23 at the Ritz-Carlton, Huntington.

Last week museum trustees feted patrons in Louis and Carmen Warschaw's "The House of the Butterfly" in Beverly Hills. Benefit chair Kathy Offenhauser's husband, Bob Ray, is the architect of the Warschaw home. (He went to China for the research and brought back five Chinese artisans to install the gray tile roof.) Patron chair Nancy Davis Arnault and her co-chair, Marilyn Brumder, greeted patrons. Co-chairman Georgianna Erskine was in Sicily.

The benefit's prestigious signature is its auction of Oriental antiquities.

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CAT'S MEOW: This is the cat's meow. The Gamble House, a National Historic Landmark in Pasadena, concludes a $1-million endowment drive Sunday with a festive "summer whites" old-fashioned "Sunday Social."

The top item to be auctioned is dinner for 12 in the Gamble House and an overnight stay for the host and hostess in the master bedroom. That's where the late David and Mary Gamble of Cincinnati slept on two Greene & Greene beds of black walnut inlaid with lapis and turquoise. David was the grandson of James Gamble, the Gamble of Procter & Gamble.

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PAST PERFECT: Barbara and Scott Bice (he's dean of the USC Law School) have one of the most stunning garden vistas in Southern California. Their alley of 17 statuesque ash trees were trimmed by Chester Rogers only hours before the Planned Parenthood of Pasadena Orient-Express fund-raiser Saturday evening.

Down the vista, croupiers grouped around the sign that said Vienna 1,129 kilometers and Paris 341. Waitresses served trays of "French 75s." That's a French gun, but in this case a drink concocted of champagne with a lace of brandy. After seafood was served around the ice carving of a train, several hundred sat down to the Bistro 45 dinner, among them Cherry and David Bianchi, Judy and Stephen McDonald, Brice Toole and fiancee Nancy Sloman, Kathy (in a '30s fox stole) and Bob Gillespie. Executive director Beth Calleton and co-chairs Karen Crockett and Carol Palladini expect to net $60,000.

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ESCALATION: The South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa crowns its 30th season with a gala Saturday chaired by trustee Dee Higby and honorary chairs Henry and Renee Segerstrom . . . Mayor Richard J. Riordan was the honoree at last week's Puente Learning Center black-tie benefit . . . USC President Steven and Kathryn Sample launched the football season with a campus luncheon . . . .

The Peninsula Committee for Childrens Hospital celebrated its 36th annual Portuguese Bend National Horse Show . . . The Neighborhood Music School Assn. hosted an open house in its restored Victorian mansion . . . James M. Galbraith autographed his new book, "Overcoming the Fear of Failure" at a Vroman's party, with wife Peggy, Cynthia and Sam Coleman, Tom and Michelle Carter, Stender Sweeney, and Ray and Nancy McCullough attending.

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