When I bumped into fashion icon Jeanne Beker at Holt Renfrew last night, it made perfect sense: we were in the shoe department. The last time I’d seen her was in the makeup chair beside me at the Chum Building on Queen Street West in Toronto. Before the massive media amalgamation in Canada, all of Moses Znaimer’s stations were housed in the same super-cool building with the news truck sticking out of the side, three stories up. With shows for Fashion Television, Bravo, Much Music, CityTV, CP24 and more being produced in the same place, it made for some fun moments in the makeup room. Fast-forward several years and one Order of Canada later — the snowflake pin is always a sure sign. Besides being in Calgary to emcee the HR charity event, Jeanne tells me she has a “big, fat new project” up her sleeve.
“I’m chomping at the bit,” she says, using a metaphor from the Stampede-approved list of cowboy colloquialisms. “It’s been two years since the show was cancelled. I can’t wait to sink my teeth into a new project.”
But beyond mysterious references to the digital nature of said project, Jeanne wouldn’t reveal any details. Hard to believe she resisted my tough questions couched in charming banter, but she’s a pro. She did talk fashion with me, though, assuring me it’s more than runways. She believes fashion is embodied by people, and it’s all about character. I agree, Jeanne. Love fashion, love life!The pre-Stampede party at Holts Calgary was a benefit for Calgary Health Trust, and the bold-faced names were out to lend their support, including luger Sam Edney, four-time Olympian.Country western singer Matt Masters was a natural choice for this hay bale photo op. His shirt’s a classic by Caravan, a Calgary company from the fifties and sixties. Yes, he does thrift shops. Although Matt tells me he lassos most of his cowboy gear when he’s on tour. His best finds are in Texas, natch, and in Mexico. He’ll be performing throughout Stampede, including CBC Radio’s morning show on Canada Day.The already impeccably attired Ryan Scott, left, and Gregg Scott, of Scott Lease and Land, told me they weren’t at the invite-only charity event to update their wardrobes — they were on the lookout for ladies. Seems like they go for the strong, silent types!A celebrity auction featured one-of-a-kind cowboy hats. I had to find the guys who made this Stampede stetson, made by Canadian jewellery designer Anzie Stein, look so good.Even with pressing business with Cher and Cyndi Lauper, the Style Guys, aka Jason Krell and Alykhan Velji, took time to bookend and say cheese, while I hoped my sweaty post-polo situation would be perceived as party glow. Thanks guys! And thanks to everyone who helped out Calgary Health Trust’s Best Beginning Program.