Fashion Forward for a Cause

To paraphrase Bill Nighy’s character, the rowdy pop star Billy Mack, in one of my all-time favorite movies, Love Actually: “Fashion is all around us.” (Well, the actual line is “Christmas is all around us,” but that season is so 2009… ) Indeed, the world is a veritable wonderland of style these days: Last week, it was New York Fashion Week with Justin and Jessica and a good portion of the Gossip Girls cast seated in the front rows; this week, fashion flits across the pond (along with the likes of Sienna Miller, Alexa Chung, and a man only referred to as “Queen Trousers”) for London’s presentation of the fall 2010 collections. That’s not to mention the awards season fashion, which I’ll wax poetic on in the coming weeks … although, if you must have a preview, I think Sandra Bullock may have stolen my purple prom dress from junior year of high school for the Golden Globes. And here at home, wherever I may turn, from rack to shelf to low-slung display case, spring—and summer and fall—certainly has sprung (see to-die-for Stella McCartney Falabella tote; perfect for those nights catwalking up and down Palmer Square).

Thus, it seems totally logical that Princeton would devise a way to get in on all of the couture and circumstance: This Friday, February 25 and Saturday, February 26, Merricks’s of Princeton will host a Nicole Miller Trunk Show event with a heart of gold (and I don’t mean of the lamé variety) to benefit HomeFront’s Women’s Initiative. The Initiative’s mission is to gather women who want to help change the lives of the underprivileged and overwhelmed in the area in order to create a better, stronger community. The brainchild of Anne Racich Mavis (daughter of Merrick’s owners John and Barbara Racich), Mary Dougherty of Nicole Miller, and HomeFront’s Ruthann Traylor, the fashion event will feature the über-flattering lines of Nicole Miller’s latest dress collections, ideal for every occasion from spring and summer weddings to your own personal spotlight moment (cue paparazzi and red-carpet arm candy). And the best part is you aren’t combing the racks solely for the sake of your own closet: Merrick’s is donating 10 percent of the weekend’s sales directly to HomeFront. A win-win, if you ask me.

The event kicks off on Friday when the doors open at 10 a.m., with cocktails served at 6 p.m. (the store will stay open until 9 p.m. for you late-night shoppers), and continues through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., providing ample time for you to shop till you drop…or perhaps just until you need to sit down and a enjoy a glass of champers. Merrick’s of Princeton, 6 Moore Street, Princeton; 609.921.0338 or

Jennifer Henderson is the editor of Princeton Scoop online and a freelance writer who has worked for several magazines, including Vanity Fair, Talk, W, and New Jersey Life. She lives in Princeton with her husband, daughter, and chocolate Labrador. She welcomes any inside scoop on what to do and see in the area. E-mail her at

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