Stephen Jones Stars at ACI 2018 Holiday Luncheon

Celebrity milliner headlined annual luncheon in support of Phoenix Art Museum’s fashion collection

Arizona Costume Institute, an affiliate group of Phoenix Art Museum, presented its 2018 Holiday Luncheon on Dec. 3. Renowned celebrity hat designer Stephen Jones served as guest of honor and keynote speaker. The fundraiser, chaired by Lynne Love, raised more than $100,000 in support of the fashion design collection at the Museum.

“We are so grateful to both the board of Arizona Costume Institute and its members for their ongoing generous support of Phoenix Art Museum. Now entering its 52nd year, Arizona Costume Institute and its annual holiday luncheon play a crucial role in both the history and future of the Museum and its fashion design program,” says Amada Cruz, the Sybil Harrington Director and CEO of Phoenix Art Museum. “The members of the luncheon’s planning committee truly devoted themselves to creating a beautiful event, and their tireless efforts resulted in an infusion of generous support for Phoenix Art Museum.”

Keynote speaker Stephen Jones has collaborated with designers such as Vivienne Westwood, Thom Browne and Christian Dior, and his designs have graced the covers of Vogue and been exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The designer presented examples of his work during the event and shared stories and exclusive insights into his meteoric rise to success as one of the most innovative milliners of this time. At the conclusion of the event, the British designer signed copies of his recent book, Stephen Jones: Souvenirs.

The event also honored Mary Ellen McKee, community philanthropist and fashionista, who was recognized as the first-ever Honorary Holiday Luncheon Chair in honor of her generous, longtime support of Arizona Costume Institute. The elegant annual luncheon featured a champagne reception, floral arrangements created by Avant Garde and cuisine provided by Santa Barbara Catering. The event was made possible through the generous support of the Scottsdale-based luxury consignment boutique To Be Continued.

Arizona Costume Institute is led by Luba Burns, who serves as the organization’s president, along with a board composed of local Valley community leaders and working professionals. The Museum’s fashion design program has been led since 2000 by Dennita Sewell, the Jacquie Dorrance Curator of Fashion Design. The fashion collection comprises more than 7,000 objects of both historical and contemporary fashion.


Dennita Sewell and Stephen Jones in the fashion gallery, hats by Stephen Jones

Amada Cruz, Matthew Boland and Diane Halle

Ellen Katz, Sally Lehmann and Daryl Weil

Jennifer Chase, Shawn Goodman and DeeDee Vecchione

Lisa Bell, Lisa Pagel and Kimberly Afkhami

Joy Sprink and Mahsa Page

John Reyes and Lisa Portigal

Eileen Yeung, Adrienne Schiffner and guest

Helene Presutti and Beth Dougherty

Vicki Vaughn, Billie Jo Herberger and Lynda Martin

Floral arrangements by Avant-Garde and cuisine by Santa Barbara Catering

Luba Burns, ACI board president

Chrissy Sayare, To Be Continued


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