The lights dimmed. The music swelled. The audience began to clap and cheer as they stared at the runway in anticipation. Then suddenly, a puppy scampered onto the stage and the show began.
About 25 dogs and their humans—and a couple hundred pup-less people—gathered in Palm Desert Sunday evening to take in a canine couture show, part of Fashion Week El Paseo 2017.
The runway show featured dogs, shepherded by human handlers, modeling Orostani Couture. Olga Yuditsky, the Chicago-based designer of Orostani Couture, has been designing canine Couture for four years.
“I’m excited. This is definitely my biggest show so far,” Yuditsky said earlier in the day. “And it’s always good to come to California.”
Her dog, Sasha, casually modeled one of her designs for onlookers during the cocktail hour preceding the main event. Many attendees brought their own pups, dressed in their Sunday best as well, to soak up the ambiance and see their friends strut on stage.
The dogs weren’t the only ones dressed up on Sunday, patrons in floor-length gowns and sky-high heels rubbed shoulders with those in bright sun dresses and shimmering jewels.
Before the show started attendees donned masks—volunteers handed them out at the entrance to advance the party’s masquerade theme—and mingled, sipping wine and cocktails and snacking on sushi and mini…