Beating the heat on a fashionable Final Friday 

Haute Stuff

We've been jealous of fashion models before, but Friday night was the first time we were envious of one who was stomping around in a bikini while we were stuck wearing multiple layers in 100-plus degree heat. We were at the Market Street Mediterranean restaurant Tabulli Grill for White Haute Nights, a fashion show/summer party to showcase Cynthia Rowley's summer collection.

Guests of the event, mostly fashion insiders and avid shoppers, were thrilled as the svelte ladies of Tout Talent paraded and posed in the space arranged by Alexandra Styles. However, the regular patrons dining in the restaurant didn't seem to know what to make of their dinner guests. Our favorite moment was when a tourist took a break from her baba ghanoush to snap a cell phone picture of the model posing three feet from her table. There was a major contrast between the bottle service in the back of the venue and the fanny packs up front, but everyone seemed to be having fun. The addition of Silverman Sounds' music and multiple photographers chasing down the models was just enough chaos to keep the crowd engaged.

On the verge of fainting from the heat and humidity, we headed to Spring Street in hopes that the Continuum Skateshop art show would at least be air-conditioned, if not inspirational. With reprieve from the torturous temperatures, we chatted with the kids in the shop about the latest in skate gear, struggling to sound hip or relevant. We found more in common with the artistic crowd out back, as many local artists were in attendance to support the exhibition. There was a DJ and a cardboard dance floor set up, but the group seemed more interested in grabbing a beer than break-dancing. Continuum's neighbor Artisan Tees was also open late and filled with art that evening, all part of Final Friday, a hipper, younger version of the South of Broad First Friday art walks.

Farther down the street, Rogue Wave Surf Shop was hosting their monthly music throwdown. "Welcome to the rave!" owner Rhett Boyd shouted over loud electronic music as we walked into the store. He later explained that the shop normally hosts more low-key bands, but that evening they decided to bring in DJ acts for a dance party. We snagged an ARCHIMEDES CD for our collection while browsing the clothing racks and made a note to check out the Knights Templar syndicate when we got home.

The scene on the porch was much more relaxed as the BYOB crowd passed around a bottle of bourbon and perfectly tanned boys discussed the potential waves at Folly the next day. More surfers were out back, lounging in an outdoor living room set-up and taking a break from all the raging inside the shop. The crowd outside was thinning as we left; either all the heat and excitement of the day made for early bedtimes or people were going back in for more dancing.

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