As a regular at the New York runway shows, where she's often on the front row to watch pal Lela Rose's collection, Jenna Bush Hager knows fashion. Even so, when we found out that the former first daughter and Today correspondent will be in Houston this week for two major social events, we couldn't resist offering some sartorial advice.
Bush is the mistress of ceremonies for the "Rendezvous in Blue" gala Thursday night at the Hilton-Americas Houston. It's the first major fundraiser for all five hospitals in the Houston Methodist system. And on Saturday night, she and husband Henry are honorary chairs of "Club Berlin," a party celebrating the 20th anniversary of Rice University's Baker Institute and celebrating James A. Baker, III’s role in the fall of the Berlin Wall.
We asked Fashion Houston executive producer Jeanne Ruberti to pick some glamorous, yet practical, suggestions for Jenna, who, with the help of two Houston models, has been transformed into a paper doll for this fashion layout.
"Jenna has such a fresh, young all-American look, so I selected dresses that wouldn't contrast sharply with her all-American aesthetic. She is a classic beauty and could wear anyone of these pieces and look divine," Ruberti says.
Shown here, Ruberti puts "Jenna" in a dark teal asymmetrical column dress by Lanvin, $3,625; Jimmy Choo shoes $695; and Judith Leiber Couture clutch $3,995.The colors of the dress and clutch fit the "Rendezvous in Blue" theme. All looks available at Neiman Marcus.
"The asymmetrical teal Lanvin dress is great if Jenna is in the mood to be very fashion forward and modern," Ruberti says.
Ruberti paired the teal gown with a Judith Leiber Couture clutch in purple and blue shades. A clutch in a contrasting shade works well as an accessory.
Black lace long sleeve dress with full skirt by ML by Monique Lhuillier, $3,900; Judith Leiber Couture clutch, $1,995; Jimmy Choo pumps, $695; and Alexis Bittar jewelry, $395.
"I especially love the black lace long sleeve dress by ML for Monique Lhuillier for its feminine and ladylike yet youthful silhouette," Ruberti says. "This is a go-to dress for many occasions and flatters all figures."
Again, Ruberti chose accessories in contrasting shades. This Judith Leiber Couture clutch in a light blue color adds a touch of sparkle and really stands out against the black lace dress. And the lucite and gold bracelet lends pizzazz to the ensemble.
Royal blue ruched off-the-shoulder cocktail dress by Liancarlo, $1,970; Manolo Blahnik shoes $755; and VBH clutch, $245.
"When selecting the dresses, I looked for styles and colors that would flatter Jenna. The silhouette is the best place to start when selecting the perfect dress, then color, and the mood of the event is also an important consideration," Ruberti says. "For this event Jenna will be center stage so I selected each dress with this in mind."
Blue and ivory brocade off-the-shoulder cocktail frock by Valentino, $3,490; Judith Leiber Couture clutch $1,995; and Jimmy Choo sandals $690.
"The blue brocade Valentino and the royal blue silk Liancarlo are both more structured, but with the very feminine detail off-the-shoulder treatment, the color and silhouette make these two dresses surefire selections for Jenna," Ruberti says.
Gold metallic illusion and beaded asymmetrical cocktail dress by Monique Lhuillier, $6,990; Jimmy Choo sandal, $550; Judith Leiber Couture turquoise clutch, $2,195; and gold chain link necklace $325.
"For the ultra feminine princess moment, Monique Lhuillier's gold tulle embellished frock is a standout for Jenna," Ruberti says.
A statement piece of jewelry always adds a touch of glamour.
"When it comes to choosing the perfect accessories, I always look for and choose the accessory that best compliments the style of the dress and the wearer, in this case for Jenna, young yet classic with just the right amount of sophistication...kind of like icing on the cake," Ruberti says.
One of our Jenna stand-ins wears an ivory print silk draped dress by Prabal Gurung, $2,995 (he's one of Jenna's favorite designers); Celine blue suede sandal, $790 ; Judith Leiber Couture silver metal bag, $2,995; and Alexis Bittar jewelry.
"Prabal Gurung's print silk dress is a delightful selection with a mood that's a bit more light-hearted and fun," Ruberti says.
One of our Jenna stand-ins wears a black sequin cocktail dress by Rubin Singer, $3,750; Jimmy Choo lace and patent pump, $695; and Charlotte Olympia scorpion clutch $1,140.
"Rubin Singer's black sequin dress will satisfy the desire to be sparkly without looking like a disco queen —chic and sophisticated," Ruberti says.
All looks available at Neiman Marcus.
"Rendezvous in Blue" gala benefiting the Houston Methodist Hospital System, Thursday night, Hilton-Americas Houston. Event is sold out.