There was a drizzle outside but on Wednesday night it was blossoming indoors at the first inaugural Red Party hosted by the Women’s Mafia to benefit Habitat for Humanity New York City at the generously sponsored Polar Lounge in Gramercy. The event, which featured a silent auction and fashion presentation, brought together an energized and diverse network of people of all ages from, fashion, media, non-profit, financial and arts industries.
For years Marcy Clark of Women’s Mafia has wanted to host a Red Party. There are White Parties in the summer, but the transition from winter to spring and summer is a time bursting forth with fresh energy and opportunity. That sentiment rang in full fervor at the event. Decked in their crimson couture, guests mingled and sipped champagne to the musical styling’s of gorgeous DJ Sharri Model while perusing and bidding on items donated for the silent auction, including art, jewelry, designer shoes, a luxury Hotel Suite and a custom garment by Carlos Luna. By evening’s end ticket sales, donations and the auction had raised thousands of dollars for Habitat for Humanity NYC! On behalf of Women’s Mafia, Marcy spoke and thanked all in attendance, as did Alexander Tedford and Josh Lockwood of Habitat and one of their home buyer Family Partners, Candace George, who inspired the hushed crowd with her moving story. Uplifted by their words, guests cheered and myriad flashbulbs went off during the fashion presentation featuring Red Party inspired wears by four exciting new designers, Alisha Trimble, Engie Hassan, Alexander Tedford and Dominique Auxilly.
Marcy Clark and Alexander Tedford, a menswear designer and also Donor Relation Associate of Habitat for Humanity NYC, first met several months ago at a magazine launch party through stylist Wayne Harris. Their shared love of design and mutual passion for making New York City a better place sparked an instant connection, and when Alex started talking about his involvement with Habitat, the collaboration became obvious.
As it turns out, Women’s Mafia and Habitat for Humanity NYC, two organizations from seemingly disparate sectors, actually share underlying fundamental common goals: to offer a platform for people to take their own initiative and run with it, and to build lasting networks and communities in which members are able to find support and mentors and ultimately become mentors themselves.
The event was different in creed than Habitat’s previous events, but ‘different in a good way,’ according to Habitat’s Executive Director, Josh Lockwood. Though Habitat’s largest donors have historically come from the financial sector, support has weakened with the economy in recent years. In light of changing times, Habitat has sought means of reaching out to different communities who share their goals and passion for providing homes and investing in improving the lives of low-income families.
In their first foray into support from media, entertainment and fashion industries, Habitat’s goal was to capture attention and leave a lasting impression. With Marcy’s extensive reach of influential, like-minded and proactive women, not to mention her knack for getting people together and producing, and Alexander’s passion for design and success in cultivating support for Habitat from all 5 boroughs of NYC, the duo teamed up to pull off an event that was truly the first of its kind. And a huge success!
Of the Family Partners who receive homes through Habitat, Josh says, ‘these are people doing everything right,’ caring for their parents and providing opportunities for their children, holding down a job, but all the while unable to catch a break and forced to live in horrible conditions that pose constant risks to their physical and mental health. Habitat gives a hand up, not a hand out.’ Family Partner homebuyers apply to Habitat, but the real work begins upon their acceptance into the program. A general contactor builds the shell and core of the homes (condominiums and coops in NYC), and 4 days a week, 52 weeks a year, Family Partners join the robust team of volunteers to build the interior of the homes that they will ultimately move into. As a result, costs of labor are kept to a minimum and the Family Partners develop an ownership and accountability for their investment into their homes. They set a remarkable example for their children and their community that through commitment to change, betterment is possible.
That example resonates in the work that Marcy had done and continues to do with Women’s Mafia. Women’s Mafia is about the power of women and community to create and support each other’s endeavors. ‘A large group of women getting together is a powerful thing in and of itself,’ says Marcy. The mission is to support causes, charities, independent businesses, talented up and coming designers and artists that Women’s Mafia members believe in. Both Women’s Mafia and Habitat are optimistic about additional collaborations in the future. In the meantime Habitat is gearing up for their largest event of the year to take place at Cipriani Wall Street on November 1st, an annual gala with 500-600 guests that highlights the Family Partner of the year. Next on the agenda for Women’s Mafia is the official launch of the memoir and beauty-advice tome “Spa Wars” by Lora Condon, makeup artist for the Red Party, hosted by designer and stylist Patricia Fields at the House of Field downtown on Friday May 6th. Email Marcy@womensmafia.com to RSVP to that event or get involved with the cause!
Alisha Trimble – Designer – www.alishatrimble.com
Engie Hassan – Stylist and Designer – www.engiestyle.com
Alexander Tedford – Menswear Designer – www.alexandertedford.com
Dominique Auxilli – Designer – www.dauxilly.com
Makeup By Lora Condon aka “The Beauty Buster” www.makeupwithme.com
with Diana Margulies
Additional Makeup by Alicia Oliveri www.aliciaoliveri.com
Styling By Trina Patterson www.trinapatterson.com
Hair By Joey Pauline from The Salon at Patricia Field www.patriciafield.com
with Jamie Starr at the Salon at Patricia Field
Styling for Ms. Trimble’s looks by V. Vernard
Jewelry by Delicate Raymond and Stylist’s Own Collections
Shoes by Luichini Shoes, Courtesy of Trina Patterson
PLANNING AND HOST COMMITTEE
Lorianna Izrailova – Model
Rene Melchor – Art and Silent Auction Consultant
Wayne Harris – Red Carpet Stylist
Cognac Wellerlane – Television Host
Matthew Schwartz – Social Media Chair
Elisha Dang – Graphic Artist and the Women’s Mafia Consigliere
Ashmi Elizabeth Dang – Graphic Artist
Alexander Tedford – Designer and Habitat for Humanity – New York City Donor Relations
Marcy Clark – Publicist and the Women’s Mafia Founder
WE ARE SO THANKFUL TO
Josh Lockwood – Executive Director – Habitat for Humanity New York City
Catherine Smith of Monarch Agency
Alex Beitler of Yellow Sky Agency
David Cote – Publishing and Finance
Assistants to Marcy Clark: Carlos Aparicio, Victoria Wallner, Carolina Sanchez, Tatyana Maddona
Engie Hassan and the entire EngieStyle team
Stream Cosmetics for Makeup Donations
Alexander Tedford and the entire Habitat for Humanity New York City Chapter
Dj Sharri Model
We Love Our Press Partners: Cognac Wellerlane, Rick Weaver, Katrena Moore, Lorna Solano, Arthur Eisenberg, Courtney Henley-Anderson, Sarah Anolik, Isabell de Wit, Jaime Gutierrez
A special thanks to Calvin Vu, John Tate and The Polar Lounge for their generosity
Our Models: Lorianna Irzailova (Wilhemina), Engie Hassan, Dominique Auxilly, Leah Wilche, Amanda Lynn Lesink, Diana (Monarch), Randy (Monarch), Franck, Dmitri Astatev, Rita Khorozian, Jinelle Benitez, Aida Sinusaite.
Organized by Marcy Clark and the Women’s Mafia
More pictures from the event:
(Photography by Arthur Eisenberg)