In a round of book signing parties for Joanne King Herring that has included the swell swankiendas of Susan Krohn and Franci Crane, none could be topped for dazzle more than Thursday night's bling-laced bash at Bulgari in the Galleria.
Store director Karen Turner-Smith pulled out the stops for the festive holiday signing of Herring's personal story Diplomacy and Diamonds. For this exceptional evening, Karen brought in Tony's catering to provide sustenance and songbird Kristine Mills to entertain.
But more importantly, she opened the Bulgari vaults to display a king's ransom in one-of-a-kind high jewelry pieces, many of which were brought in from around the country just for this evening. Knowing Joanne's special penchant for fine jewelry, Karen ordered holiday cookies that resembled Joanne's famous Bulgari necklace.
Exhibiting every bit of the glamour that Julia Roberts did when she portrayed a young Joanne in the film Charlie Wilson's War, the diplomat turned author charmed more than 100 guests with her repartee and high spirits.
Toasting the lady of the hour were her son Beau King, John Mecom, Kristina Hornberger and Paul Somerville, Tara and David Wuthrich, Shirley and Jim Dannenbaum, Karen and Byron Hood, Shelley Ann Marks, Corbett Parker and identical twins Tena Lundquist Faust and Tama Faust.
A Hispanic taste of the holidays
Guests who attended the Mayor's Hispanic Advisory Board holiday reception are still raving about the fab eats put on at Sombreros Coffee Shop & More, the new eatery opened by Lolita Guerrero and Yolanda Black Navarro on Navigation Boulevard. The 150 guests swooned over Lolita's chicken and beef fajita dinner.
Board chairman Roland Garcia, Greenberg Traurig shareholder, introduced Mayor Annise Parker and joined Liz Lara-Carreno and Yolanda in presenting the mayor with a colorful Hispanic Heritage poster.
Among the many political powerhouses attending were newly-elected City Councilmembers Jerry Davis, Jack Christie and Helena Brown plus City Councilman Ed Gonzalez, Harris County Commissioner Jack Cagle and State Sen. Mario Gallegos.
The influential crowd included Karen Garcia, Hector Carreno, Sylvia Garcia, Blanca and David Medina, Terry Morales, Tatcho Mindiola, John Hernandez, Greg Compean and Olga Rodriguez.
A smokin' hot party
Franco Valobra invited the gents in Thursday for an evening of "Aged Scotch, Cigars, Models & Jewels" at his Highland Village Valobra emporium of must-have-for-Christmas jewelry. The fifth annual testosterone-laced gathering encouraged shopping for the ladies in these gentlemen's lives.
Doing a little serious shopping were Patrick Gehm, R.O. Hunton, John Schiller, Byron Hood, Bruce Gingrich, Matt Hiller, Ed Parker III, Christian Escudie and Jesse Marion.
Telling it all
Retired NFL great and Houston Oilers quarterback Dan Pastorini, still charming the ladies, was on at Tootsies the other night, when he signed copies of his book Taking Flak, My Life in the Fast Lane.
Joining him in the spotlight was sports writer and 610 AM radio personality John P. Lopez, who helped Pastorini pen the tome, the title of which comes from the fact that Pastorini was the first quarterback to don a flak jacket to protect three shattered ribs.
Football fans in the mix included Pam Morse, Joe Edison, Jennifer Doornbos, Douglas Glover, Marcie Craig, Kristina Hornberger and Paul Somerville, Christina Thai, Katie Yust and Jeff Noyes.
Tis the season for book signings
Retired diplomat, mother of two, Mimi Vance held court in Tootsies signing copies of her book Words by the Handful, the colorful child-friendly tome that introduces young parents and their babies to American Sign Language, considered a helpful bridge to early language.
Shoring up the book sales with loyal family support was Mimi's sister, Phoebe Tudor.