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"Johnny" Come Lately
Is it true that Diane von Furstenberg is designing hospital gowns?
Indeed, it is. Litchfield County’s resident fashion doyenne teamed up with Cleveland Clinic to design a more comfortable, more stylish hospital gown. The garment, which borrows some elements from DvF’s iconic wrap dress, is in the final piloting phase at the Cleveland Clinic, according to Jeanne Ryan, RN, health executive in charge of the “Johnny” gown makeover. Ryan said DvF offered her design expertise during a chance meeting with the hospital’s CEO, Toby Cosgrove, at a networking conference.
Granted, the new gown isn’t exactly a fashion statement, having made its debut in a hospital hallway not the runway. But it’s drawn kudos for its improvement over the traditional boxy gowns with their peek-a-boo-backs that leave patients feeling uncomfortable and exposed.
The DvF prototype gown falls below the knees and comes in lightweight poly-cotton with a reversible design of von Furstenberg’s bold, graphic pattern. Like the wrap dress, it has ties on the side and a V-neck opening in the front to allow access for medical examinations, while preserving the patient’s modesty, explains Ryan.
The redesign has taken several years, and the final gown still requires some tweaking. “It’s a difficult process that requires clinical knowledge and design sense and fabric knowledge,” says Ryan.
Alas, the gowns won’t bear the DvF signature, and it’s not certain whether they will be marketed to other hospitals. But Ryan says the response to the gown, which comes in four colors, has been positive. The exception is some squawking from the male ranks that the redesign is too feminine. - Wendy Carlson
Met at the Warner
Is it true that the Metropolitan Opera will be at the Warner Theatre in Torrington?
Well, sort of. The Warner Theatre will present the Metropolitan Opera's popular Live in HD series through 2012. The new initiative will debut in May at the Warner's nancy marine Studio Theatre, including Strauss's Capriccio on May 12, Verdi's Il Trovatore on June 2, and Wagner's Summer Encore presentations feature the exact same content as the live presentations except that they are presented on a high-definition screen, at a more convenient time for the viewing public and the theatre.
Developed as a way to reach existing audiences and to introduce new audiences to opera through new technology, Met: Live in HD is in its fifth season and features 12 live transmissions. The events are enhanced by specially produced features that offer audiences a look behind the scenes. These include live interviews with singers, directors, designers, and stage technicians. "We are excited not only to offer The Met programming locally, but also to introduce the world renowned artistry of the Metropolitan Opera to new audiences in our community," said Warner marketing directer Steve Criss. - Heather Borbeau
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