2011 February 3

Mix And Match(book) With Cocktails At Coach

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Rita Konig and John Derian Rita Konig and John Derian
Billy Farrell Agency
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(NEW YORK) A packed party of interior design and indie fashion darlings toasted the debut of Matchbook Magazine, an online "field guide to a charmed life," at the Coach store in SoHo. Co-hosted by southern belle designer Lela Rose, John Derian of dark and irreverant decoupage fame and Vogue contrib Rita Konig, the fete looked like a lively tableau of the publication's motto. Rose, cover girl of the first issue, dished on her childhood below the Mason-Dixon line. "I know the girls, Katie and Jane, are not Southern, but it sort of has that feel," Rose said of the cheeky description of a matchbook girl. Besides a rosy-hued approach to life and a penchant for red velvet cake, the proverbial Matchbook girl shares her last piece of gum. "I was never allowed to chew gum growing up. I would've been grounded if I did, but I was grounded for everything anyway."

Strapping lads in chocolate brown leather aprons by Coach (of course) squeezed through the throngs with deliciously off-kilter nibbles, including beef carpaccio with pineapple atop a rosemary-kissed adult version of a Wheat Thin. Of course there were tiny truffled grilled cheese sandwiches making the rounds, but that’s as expected as the flutes of bubbly, which became wine glasses of bubbly as the night wore on and the proper glassware had been tapped. Meanwhile, leathersmiths tapped -- or rather, hammered -- away at strips of colorful hides in the store's front window. "Are they doing construction during the event? I can't even hear my own voice!" yelled a confused attendee over the din.

Like Rose, WHIT designer Whitney Pozgay was profiled in the mag's debut (electronic) pages, and was a gum-deprived child as well. In the throes of prepping for fash week and her upcoming New Orleans nuptials, recently engaged Pozgay still has a whimsical, very matchbook-apropos bucket list. "I really want to go to India and do the road trip from New York to California.  In my imagination, we’re doing it in an Airstream RV," Pozgay says. "Oh, and I want to learn to play the ukulele and I don’t know why that’s on the list, but it is." As for quirky tidbit about auntie Kate Spade? "She calls herself the wizard because she always remembers everything."

Matchbook co-founder and creative director Jane Lilly Warren, a former graphic designer for JP Morgan, counts the Spades and Lilly Pulitzer as inspiration for her closet, and aspirations for future profile subjects. As for aesthetic inspirations, Warren is particularly tickled by Town & Country. "I'd like Matchbook to be for the younger Town & Country set," Warren said. "But without the society page." Her editorial counterpart, co-founder and former interior designer and blogger Katie Armour, was in awe of the social turnout for the evening's festivities. "This probably isn't John Derian's scene, but he came tonight and that's so cool!"  Armour said. The willowy interior design tastemaker turned e-mag editrix, attired in sheer black pleats, opts for a "darker, simpler" look for her outfits than when outfitting an abode. Her aspirations from the runway, though?  "I'm a real classics kind of girl...Carolina Herrera, Oscar de la Renta," Armour said. "The day will come when I wear one of those dresses!"

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