12 October 2011

The Willow Ball

A sumptuous invitation to the fist virtual ball of the season, The Willow Ball, started a whirl of shopping for the perfect gown and jewels and endless discussions with my friends about whom to invite. The Lady of Willow Manor has made this generous invitation to all of us in the blogosphere and who could refuse? This gracious lady sets the mood with abundant candle light and arms full of yellow roses that make us all beautiful. The grandeur and magnificence is simply unequaled these days. The finest of foods.

Since this is also my first time at the Willow Ball, it became paramount to attend the premier in grand style. After searching the four fashion sows in New York, London, Paris and Milan I found the dress of dreams. The dress, white, of course, and stunning, is from my favorite Italian designer, made in Milan. I feel opulent in it, like a fine art painting of the masters. The flow of the gown as I dance is a thing of grace as it catches the music in its very fabric and swirls it around

One can never underestimate the role of accessories. The jewels from Tiffany provide the merest embellishment to the center stage of the gown. Important, but just a slight sparkle of diamonds in platinum, the faintest blush of Morganite pendant to catch the light and play it across my skin. Facets honed to quietly enhance rather than grab attention to themselves.

And that most vital of accessories for a dance- the shoes. In this case a simple pair of Valentino Satin Sandals. But head turners all the same. Notice the touch of silver skimming the bow, understated eye candy.

But a ball, especially the season's first ball, is all about dancing. The chance to finally dance, to flow like silk across the floor. to melt into the music and my partner's arms and move in graceful, effortless steps. To choose a partner for such an extravaganza is to choose a dance partner first and foremost,  cool and cosmopolitan. I  called Fred and was excited when he was free for the evening. Ah, the dance, the romance, the possibility of amore.

Also essential in this inaugural ball, Fred's a fashion icon. He wrote the book on classy dressing. His advice on what you gentlemen will need for the Willow Ball?
1. A jacket with tails
2. A white bow tie
3. A buttoniere
4. A handkerchief
5. A crisp white button-up
6. Shiny black shoes
A fashionable cane
8. A top hat

Ladies and gentlemen, the classiest dresser of them all and my date, Mr. Fred Astaire:

The Willow Ball provides many venues of music in an extravaganza of ball rooms. You'll find me in the perhaps old fashioned but ever so cultured Willow Waltz Room. The decor is divine, the people beautiful and the music oh, so danceable. The polish and politeness are evident, the refinement and sophistication, the splendor and style. Fred has been running through routines with the men pictured above who came early and wanted some of that smooth polish for themselves. They were not disappointed.

I hoped to post Fred dancing a waltz with Ginger, his usual partner, but he thought it would be too intimidating and suggested instead a short, lovely slow waltz by the Baricchi couple. Those Italians are so classically chic in their moves. Fred assures me anyone can master this. Give yourself a treat during the Ball and take a spin with Fred when I need to sit one out. He's a great dance partner and likes to sing the tunes in your ear. He has some other interesting moves that you might have to watch out for but it's all in the spirit of ardor engendered in the atmosphere.

I Imagine what we'll look like floating across the floor to waltzes by famous composers like Chopin, Schubert and the "Waltz King", Strauss. I'll be the one draped over the arm of the best dancer at the Ball and I'll be in heaven dancing cheek to cheek with Fred and the memories, well, they can't take that away from me.

(The gown is from Google images- formal ball gowns. The necklace is from Tiffany & Co.- diamond necklaces. The shoes are from Net-A-Porter Shoes.)


  1. You and Fred are dancing like a dream! The envy of all!

  2. How fabulous! I am going to wear my grandmother's pink slipper satin ball gown, which I used to try on as a teenager... I had to stuff socks in the top then, but I bet I'll fill it nicely now! The skirt is so full I could make two whole circles with it, and it weighed a ton. My partner, my husband. Not the BEST dancer in the world, but he holds me just right :)

  3. Is it that time of year again? I'll have to go over to find out who is wearing what (or should I say who). Love your dress... and your fabulous partner. :-)

  4. You and Fred look quite stunning together.

  5. That clip was amazing. You are one very elegant and classy lady.

  6. Tess, Virtual dreams are lovely, nonetheless.

    Nan, Oh do, it's your color and Sean will turn more than a few heads.

    DJan, It's today- check it out! We're quite the couple, aren't we?

    Paula, Welcome, thanks for stopping by and thanks for noticing my date.

    Lena, I can do anything virtually! Welcome!

  7. Welcome to the Willow Ball. It is a fabulous occasion! The virtual world is almost as exciting as the real one!

  8. Cheryl, Welcome. Thanks for the welcome and yes, it is!

  9. For an elder (a fellow elder) you certainly know how to trip the light fantastic!!!! A pleasure meeting you.

  10. My dear you were simply regal! Glad to have chatted with you at the ball.

  11. I was wondering if someone would bring Fred along - I tacked him on to my arm metaphorically speaking to give me wings :)

  12. Helen, Oh, we elders still have our fantasies. Welcome to the journey.

    Yoll, A splendid affair. Thanks for chatting.

    Shaista, He does lighten your feet, doesn't he? And it's fun to meet new friends.

    Linda, It was great fun.

  13. Fred was busy. How does he do it?

    I know how you do, because you are in such terrific shape. I was pooped after one waltz, but Leo and I so enjoyed you flowing across the floor like silk (he said those very words!).

  14. Ruth, Leo's golden tongue, how you must have enjoyed your conversation. But me, I loved the dancing! All the running is worth it to ready me for a night in Fred's arms, swirling. He's so very gracious. Great seeing you there.


Let's chat.