Tyler Ellis, the daughter of the late designer Perry Ellis, has teamed with her father’s namesake company in raising money this Sunday for the Elton John AIDS Foundation at their annual Academy Awards viewing party in Los Angeles.
“My father passed away from AIDS in 1986,” the 33-year-old designer explained. “It’s such an incredible achievement to see what foundations like Elton John’s have done to help people [living with the disease] and to help lift the stigma [associated with it].”
Ellis, who founded her eponymous company in 2011, is quickly becoming a red carpet favorite for celebrities including Meryl Streep, Diane Kruger, Reese Witherspoon, Octavia Spencer, Oprah Winfrey and others, who have all been spotted with Ellis’ signature “Perry” bag at recent events including the Golden Globes in January.
On Sunday evening, a one-of-a-kind custom-made version of the “Perry” bag will be auctioned to benefit the EJAF and will be accompanied by an equally unique black and red silk bow tie by Perry Ellis’ team led by creative director Michael Maccari.
The coveted clutch, which is made of clear crystal over a red lining, boasts Ellis’ logo, written in her late father’s own handwriting. “He passed away when I was 18 months old and I have an envelope that was addressed to me,” she explains. “We took my name from that [envelope] and on the gold [AIDS ribbon] plaque in this bag [it reads] ‘Tyler Ellis for Elton John AIDS Foundation.’ [My father] is a part of every piece I create, which is super special.”
Maccari, who joined as the creative leader of Perry Ellis in 2014, hopes this collaboration is the first of many with both Tyler Ellis and the EJAF. “Hopefully one day we’ll enter the women’s market again and it would be great to collaborate with Tyler,” revealed the Fashion Institute of Technology alumnus.
For this weekend’s fund-raiser Maccari felt a one-of-a-kind bow tie was the perfect accompanying accessory to Ellis’ clutch, saying the two-tone tie could be “worn in conjunction with whomever is carrying the bag.”
Sunday’s live auction will also feature seven other lots including a white gold and diamond Bulgari necklace, a 1987 print of Herb Ritts’ photograph titled “Backflip” and 350 bottles of Hatt et Söner Personal Vintage Champagne.
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