Saturday, March 24, 2012

Happy Birthday Mr. Mackie!

Happy Birthday Mr. Mackie!  
I hope your special day is full of Sparkle & Excitement!

-Philip Estrada

Monday, March 19, 2012

Le Mackie... Oh La La - Part 2

Last night while browsing aimlessly on the interwebs Ryan came across this video and promptly pointed it out.  It seems as these were promo videos put together after Vogue Paris' February issue in Las Vegas.

The first video features the ladies of Jubilee! in their fan dance costumes designed by our friend and my future boss, Bob Mackie.  Those ladies move so effortlessly!

The second video is sheer perfection!  Not only does it feature quite an excellent Elvis impersinator, but it also features the Jubilee! ladies both on and off stage.  Featured heavily is one of the show's finalé costumes which is an engineering marvel.  The costume is lovingly nicknamed "The 747" on account of its breathtaking wingspan.  The entire finale of Jubilee! features an army of headdresses each more breathtaking than the next and all of which were designed by Bob Mackie.

These videos make me antsy for my return trip to Vegas!  So glad that these got uploaded to youtube.  A big thanks to them.  I hope you enjoy these as much as I did.

- Philip Estrada

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Lecture - Meeting Mr. Bob Mackie

Photo courtesy of Jason Thomas
The lecture on Friday was so amazing! I arrived dutifully early to ensure that I got the best seat in the house.  Chris who works for the Bob Mackie team here in NYC saved me a seat behind her in the second row, eye level with the chairs set up for our speakers.  Being a half hour early gave me plenty of time to relish in the excitement and talk myself into calming down.  Ryan arrived shortly after. He's so wonderfully supportive. We chatted about the day's events and I tried my best to pay attention.  Every time anyone walked out of the holding area off stage I got excited and my attention was gone.  I was so wound up. Later my dear friends Nicole, Leah, AnnMarie, Nancy and Jason arrived in support of my quest.
Then off in distance in a small hallway there was a figure.  It was him, the Raja of Rhinestones, the Sultan of Sequins... it was Bob Mackie.  I was suddenly six years old again and had just seen Santa Claus.  This is really happening, my idol will be sitting seven feet away from me speaking about my favorite subject, himself.  Hal Rubenstein and Mr. Mackie came to the stage under a barrage of thunderous applause.  They were introduced and Hal began speaking about Bob's career. 
It was so wonderful. Bob is the most humble designer ever.  He really embraces his title as a costume designer and you could tell by the way he spoke that he loves bringing characters to life through clothing.  Hal Rubenstein's book 100 Unforgettable Dresses was also the topic of the lecture so he shared some highlights and asked Bob to share his thoughts.  Of the many gowns Hal shared most were Mackie's own designs!  It was really wonderful to hear about the design process of some of his iconic work.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Duffey

The question and answer portion of the lecture began and my body heat rose twenty degrees and my heart began racing.  I couldn't just sit there and NOT ask a question.  This was my chance, I had six million questions racing through my mind but none of them was making sense.  After a few questions were asked, my gut filled with doom... this will be ending very soon!  My hand shot up, it was now or never.  Mr. Rubenstein called on me.  I sat up on the edge of my seat and professed myself as Bob Mackie's biggest fan.  He complimented my shirt, and I asked him "In your career you have worked with so many ladies that kept coming back and were very loyal to you.  What was it that you feel that made them keep coming back to you?"  He explained that it was an intimate personal relationship.  He learned what each woman needed and how her body wore clothes differently.  The moment his answer ended I immediately followed up with, "Do you think that personal relationship is what young stage stars are missing, and that is why they don't have the prolific careers that your clients have had like Cher or Diana?"  He expressed how that was a good question and he felt that some girls are getting there with their style and he thinks Lady Gaga is getting there.  Hal shared how he was at a charity event and Bernadette Peters performed and how amazing she was and how the sunset glistened perfectly off her gold sequined gown.  He told her how epic she looked and she responded "I looked amazing because it's a Mackie."  So true little lady... so true.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Duffey

After the finish of the lecture ended I grabbed my little gift bag and hightailed it over to speak to Mr. Mackie.  I introduced myself and gave him my card telling him that I was his number one fan who is responsible for this blog.  He exclaimed, "That's you!"  I was so flattered that he knows who I am!  He is aware!  I gave him his own t-shirt which he adored.  I hope that he sends me a picture of him rocking it!   Bob was so wonderful, he was taking pictures with his fans and signing autographs.  He is so giving and selfless.  

Photo courtesy of Jason Thomas
Photo courtesy of Jason Thomas

Mr. Mackie was so kind he offered to sign Ryan's shirt.  It was so awesome.  Ryan was so excited!

It was such a fantastic night.  Meeting Mr. Mackie again was such a delight.  He's always such a nice guy.  As we said our goodbyes I told him, "See you on Monday."    

-Philip Estrada

Photo courtesy of Jason Thomas

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Le Mackie... OH LA LA!

French Vogue swung by Vegas for it's February issue to shoot a 66 page fashion spread using the City of Sin as its playground!  When I heard that, I ran to the nearest world magazine store and threw down my cash like a shameless addict.  Prominently featured throughout the spread was the Bob Mackie clad ladies of Jubilee!  I know I post a lot about these gals, but honestly I can’t help myself.  They are magnificent!

I love these shots because the Jubilee gals are used as props and secondary models, but they outshined the main model!  Since they are wearing the Bob Mackie and Pete Menefee designed costumes from the show your eye goes directly to them.  The detail and intricacy of their wardrobe is so dazzling!  In some of the photos it's like playing Where's Waldo to find the model!

Below are the photos I scanned directly from the magazine.
I am in LOVE with the lady at the top of the stairs!  I’ve never noticed her costume in photos before, but I am obsessed with her now!  Work it out lady friend!  WORK IT OUT!

-Philip Estrada

Friday, March 2, 2012

Eliza Doolittle

This gown was inspired by the Embassy Ball scene in “My Fair Lady.”  Rather than designing for the period the musical was set in I opted to be inspired by it instead.  The gown maintains the original intent of the scene but has a sexy contemporary feeling.  The front of the gown will have a dramatically low cut front with a sheer mesh panel.  The bodice of the gown will be encrusted with various sized rhinestones, white sequins and beads that trickle down loosely.  The shape of the gown will be fitted on the front with beautifully draped fullness at the back that transitions into the train.  I want the gown to be dramatically full but it will be constructed so that it doesn't appear shapeless. 

I originally started this just as a study of a Bob Mackie sketch as practice since I liked the pose.  The sketch was coming out pretty awesome so I took it and ran with it.  I had the idea for this gown as an option for a friend’s wedding that is coming up in December.  Although the design would be my own pipe dream I felt as though if I didn’t get it down on paper now I never would.  After the sketch was finished in pencil I scanned it into photoshop to clean it up and add color.  I feel the result looks pretty great!

Can you guess which Bob Mackie sketch was the original inspiration?

-Philip Estrada
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