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Connie McAllister
News_Style File_March 2012_Connie McAllister
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Photo by Eli Spector

For the recent DiverseWorks dinner featuring the outrageous director/author/artist John Waters, Connie McAllister wanted to wear "something inspired by the man — something this was unique, playful, and with a hint of drama (but the fun kind) like John Waters, although he definitely has more than a hint of drama."

So McAllister, the director of external affairs at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, wore a vintage 1950s-era black organza cocktail dress with black velvet bow detail. "I actually got it at one of my favorite places for treasure hunting here in town – The Guild Shop," she said in an email.

She added a pair of Calvin Klein black snakeskin print pumps and vintage jewelry — an art deco silver and ruby swan ring with art deco rhinestone earrings, both bought at New York flea market, and a silver art deco bangle. To add a nice contrast to the all-black ensemble, she pulled her hair back with a large faux deep red rose from Michael’s, which she cut down to wear as a hair pin. It matched her deep red lips (courtesy of YSL rouge pur lipstick #96).

The eye-catching look fits into McAllister's style. "I love fashion and am drawn to a number of styles depending on my mood and/or event, but I am especially inspired by classic American (especially ‘70s) with a twist. I take unique vintage pieces and then give them a contemporary restyling," she said.  "I don’t apply too many rules to fashion except that you should always wear something that makes you feel special."

— CLIFFORD PUGH

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