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Spell of the Ball!

| February 23, 2012 | Parties

THE PARTY The always anticipated Crystal Charity Ball, in its 59th year, once again dazzled Dallas, as the Chantilly Ballroom at the Hilton Anatole hotel transformed into a winsome winterscape, complete with frolicking “snow fairy” children and an “ice goddess” (none other than Jan Strimple). WOW FACTOR(S) Event designer Tom Addis Productions pulled off the twinkling-snowy theme with characteristic aplomb, as guests were serenaded into the ballroom by the Texas Boys Choir and NCES Community Chorus. Dining tables, enrobed in white overlays festooned by “snowflakes,” were topped by gasp-inducing centerpieces of white hydrangea and phalies, birch, candles and crystal. Guests dined on puff pastry-topped French onion soup, filet mignon and pommes frites, topped off by molten chocolate cake with caramel and Valrhona chocolate sauce. After dinner, late-night band Haute Chile kept the dance floor packed. WITH FULL BENEFITS Funds raised from this year’s ball (an impressive $4.2 million) were distributed to eight children’s charities: Communities in Schools Dallas Region, Contact Crisis Line, Dallas Mission for Life, Los Barrios Unidos Community Clinic, Methodist Health System Foundation, Nexus Recovery Center, Trinity River Mission and Vickery Meadow Learning Center. GOWNED AND DANGEROUS! Fashion certainly did not take the night off at this year’s ball, where flurries of chiffon, flounces of organza and full-on shimmer and shine were on the gala’s carousel of confections. Arresting, look-at-her gowns rustled at every turn. Ball Chairman Connie O’Neill upped the glint factor in a white Monique Lhuillier with gleaming tulle overlay, while Chairman-elect Aileen Pratt opted for ultimate glamour via a black, crystal-studded Oscar de la Renta. Peggy Sewell and Lee Ann White played the ultimate ladies in red, outfitted in ravishing crimson by Carolina Herrera and Michael Faircloth, respectively. And D’Andra Simmons donned an alluring lace look by local designer sweetheart Shirin Askari—along with perhaps her most handsome accessory, fiancĂ© Colin Duchin. Photography by Dana Driensky and Daniel Driensky


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