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Wintry Fête Uptown

Arden Hess & Walter Rowland Jr.

Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Chapel and the River Club, December 2, 2006

Click to Read Their Story
Photographs by Edward Keating

I wore two dresses. The first was from a Bergdorf sample sale. The second was a girlie party dress for the reception so I could move.

We had five courses—one too many. Each had a wine pairing because that’s important to my father and Walter. Hence, all the glasses on the tables.

I really wanted vintage Champagne glasses and cupcakes, and an old-school menu that was a marriage of North and South. (I was raised in Georgia.) We served collard greens and peach cobbler.

I couldn’t be bare-shouldered in church and Walter’s mom asked me to wear her white-mink capelet. It was a dilemma. She was so sweet about it, but I used to work for the ASPCA and do not wear fur. The girls I work with at Oscar de la Renta sent me this sweater as a wedding gift.

Our first dance was to Frank Sinatra’s “Night and Day.” We took classes to learn a fox-trot. But when we got up there, I panicked. All I could do was step from side to side.