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November 15, 2011 > Tea dresses for fashion and art

Tea dresses for fashion and art

By Julie Grabowski

The first annual High Tea and Fashion Show takes to the runway in Hayward this Sunday, debuting the Original Golf Dress among other fabulous fashions in support of Sun Gallery.

"This is the event to attend if you are looking for an afternoon of great fashion, great food, and great fun. There may even be a little risky business!" says Original Golf Dress Company founder Laura Swan. "Another great reason to attend is the opportunity to visit TPC Stonebrae, Hayward's spectacular private country club that has some of the best views in the Bay Area."

Cabie, Chi Jeans, and Dominique Men's Wear wear will be featured alongside Original Golf Dress Company, the clothes modeled by members of the golf club with the club valets taking on the male modeling duties. In addition to delectables from the tea tray, the event will also include representatives from Stella and Dot Jewelry, Premier Jewelry, Guittard Chocolate, and Bay Area wineries.

Based in Hayward, the Original Golf Dress Company began making its fashions available this past April. "It all started with one woman having an idea and another woman sewing it into reality," says Swan. After taking an early retirement from 30 years in telecom, Swan turned her focus to the sport she loves: golf. However, she was unable to find an outfit that combined style, comfort, and performance. The search was time consuming and stressful, and the specific apparel guidelines of many golf clubs only added to the frustration.

Every swing of the club was a reminder, as Swan had to tuck her shirt back into her skirt each time. And after seeing an LPGA player on television reveal an unattractive belly when her shirt rose up with her swing, she went in search of a one-piece outfit. Coming up empty handed, Swan did what most determined and creative people do when unable to find what they're after: she created her own. With the help of Lori Eldridge, Swan's designs became reality and Original Golf Dress Company was born.

The outfit is an all-purpose dress designed for golf, but can easily go from the course out to dinner, running errands, or worn to another sporting event. The Original Golf Dress features a micro nylon/Lycra top, pearl snaps, cotton/spandex stretch skirt, slimming waist band, invisible zipper, and skirt pockets, and is available in a variety of prints, colors, and sizes. It meets all club dress codes, and even comes with ball markers.

The High Tea and Fashion Show is sponsored by the TPC Stonebrae Angels, a group initially formed to help other TPC Stonebrae members in times of need, but which has expanded to include assisting local charities. "This event is being held as an annual event to bring together the community and local businesses so we can help raise funds for a local charity," says Swan. "We're hoping that we can just keep building it every year."

Of their inaugural beneficiary, Sun Gallery, Swan, a former gallery board member, says, "It is one of the most underrated facilities in town. It offers the greatest programs." And as the gallery's street has been cut off due to road work, she says they are just trying to get it some exposure.

While there is no specific dress code for the event, the donning of hats is welcomed, though not required. But really, who doesn't like the chance to dress up a bit? So pull out your own finest fashions and take part in Hayward's newest good time.

Tickets are $25 and advanced purchase is preferred, though tickets will be available at the door. To purchase tickets or learn more call (510) 306-4266.

High Tea and Fashion Show
Sunday, November 20
1 p.m. - 4 p.m.
TPC Stonebrae
222 Country Club Dr., Hayward
(510) 306-4266
Tickets: $25

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