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FASHION/Scene

Totally Ruffled

June 13, 1996

When 400 of Mossimo Giannulli's dearest friends called to RSVP to his 33rd birthday party on Saturday night, they had to answer a question: "What color and size shirt would you like?"

Within days, each guest received via messenger a ruffled tuxedo shirt, in one of several hues certain to delight the flashiest lounge lizard--lime green, red, yellow, orange, purple, blue or mint. Observing how this creative crowd had decorated, tucked, tied and otherwise transformed the shirt into a total look became as intoxicating as the blue martinis served in a tent next to the sportswear designer's Laguna Beach home.

Most of the women made the no-brainer choice of tight black pants, knotting their shirts to expose bare midriffs. Short skirts, snakeskin hip-huggers and long, slinky dresses were also plentiful. The guys, displaying highly experimental spirits, wore everything from "Saturday Night Live"-inspired tuxedos to short suits, sarongs and plaid nerd pants. An oversized white suit all but hid the host's lime shirt (pictured upper left with actor Jason Gedrick).

Security men checked for the official shirt at the door, but no one dictated how long it had to stay on. Surprisingly, no party poopers stripped it off once inside. Into the wee hours, ruffles ruled.

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