Leah McSweeney didn’t leave much to the imagination during her first “RHONY” reunion.
The Married to the Mob founder and designer, 37, sported a jaw-dropping sheer black mesh look comprised of a crop top, skirt, fingerless gloves and face mask, all made by lingerie designer Sandra Gagalo and styled by Phil Gomez.
“First, I was sending him old-school Alaïa, old-school Versace, and he said that he knew of this Brooklyn-based young female designer who he thought that we could collaborate with and make something super cool with,” McSweeney exclusively told Page Six Style of the inspiration behind her outfit.
Gomez told us via text, “For the reunion look we really wanted to create something custom, and working with see-through mesh was only natural since it has become a signature of hers. But more importantly with mesh, what you see is what you get, nothing to hide. And that’s Leah: unapologetically real! That’s why I love working with her, especially on ‘RHONY’ projects, because we both love to disrupt the norm.”
While her reunion look may have been reminiscent of the dress she wore to co-star Ramona Singer’s birthday party, McSweeney said that wasn’t intentional.
“I happen to love black mesh. Like, there was definitely a year where I wore a black mesh turtleneck bodysuit with jeans, like that was my thing,” she explained. “I just love the way it hugs my body. I love the way it looks, and I always just feel there’s just something very powerful about black mesh. I feel very confident in it.”
She elaborated, “When I found out that our theme was black … Obviously a little black dress is so classic and so great, but I personally don’t have that many, and I’m more of a color person. So I have to make it fun, I have to make it funky, I have to make it stand out. That’s who I am, and I just wanted to have fun with it. I didn’t want to be safe.”
Gagalo, the designer, told us via text: “When Phil reached out to me about making a custom dress for Leah, it was an immediate YES. Leah is a badass entrepreneur with a genuine point of view. It’s so powerful. I love her vibe!”
The other “Housewives” seemed to approve of McSweeney’s look, too.
“I think they’re used to my fashion choices,” she told us. “I don’t think I surprised them. I think they liked it. They said they did. Ramona said she loved it, but I don’t know if she’s telling the truth or not. I think she is.”
As for those elbow-length fingerless gloves? All the better to show off McSweeney’s fresh mani, of course.
“I always have my nails done,” she said. “I never don’t have my nails done. And so I was like, ‘I can’t cover my nails with the gloves for the reunion. I want reunion nails; like, that’s my thing too.’ So she was like, ‘I’ll just cut out the fingertips!’”
And while her choice of a barely-there mesh mask over a protective face covering may have sparked backlash, McSweeney insisted the accessory was for fashion, not function — and that the production took plenty of precautions to keep the “RHONY” crew safe.
“The fact that there are so many people commenting about my sheer mask not being COVID-safe makes me question everybody’s intelligence and common sense,” she said on her Instagram Stories over the weekend. “Like, no s—t, obviously it’s not for protection. It’s part of my look.”
Continued McSweeney, “You know what was for protection? Getting tested for COVID the day before [filming]. Getting tested for COVID two days before that. Staying six feet apart from everybody. The protocol that went into the reunion was insane, unlike anything I had ever seen. So anyone leaving a comment being like, ‘That sheer mask doesn’t help,’ f—k off.”