“Do you have any edibles?”
At the tender hour of 10 p.m. on Friday night, the ballroom at the Plaza Hotel was filled with the usual blend of leggy Insta-models in underwear-revealing gowns, designers looking to blow off steam before their shows, and a requisite handful of actual A-list celebs who have come to make up the annual Harper’s Bazaar Icons party. And, yes, it smelled of weed.
This year’s September issue cover star, The Weeknd, was on hand to perform. He arrived with girlfriend Selena Gomez in tow; the duo made quick work of the red carpet before heading backstage to chat with the evening’s host, Carine Roitfeld. Obviously, she’s a fan.
“Who is not a fan?” she said. “It’s the music you want to dance to. Everyone likes him, and he’s a really nice person,” she added. “And he has a gorgeous girlfriend.”
Gomez snapped a Polaroid of Roitfeld before mulling over the idea of an “icon” while en route to her beau. “To be honest, I feel like the definition of an icon has changed,” she said. “To me, a hero is someone like my mom.”
The likes of (deep breath) Nicki Minaj, Paris Jackson, Ciara, Brooke Shields, Jared Leto, Kendall Jenner, Kim Kardashian, Gigi Hadid, Karlie Kloss, Young Thug, Kaia and Presley Gerber (accompanied by mom and dad), Courtney Love, Delilah Belle Hamlin, Fetty Wap, Brooklyn Beckham, Sofia Richie, Riccardo Tisci and (inexplicably) Jim Carrey paraded through the Plaza, in eclectic interpretations of black tie.
There was a healthy dose of Leonardo DiCaprio’s exes (a not-so-exclusive club); there was a Sprouse brother — and not the one making a comeback — and there were rappers of various levels of fame. Nowhere to be found, it should be noted, was Tiffany Trump, who stirred headlines earlier this week when a rep’s attempt at requesting an invite found its way into the inbox of Harper’s magazine instead of the fashion monthly’s.
“It looks like a Vegas trade show in here,” muttered an editor walking past the various Instagram-friendly backdrops covered in the party’s various sponsors’ branding.
“Missy Elliott, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson,” said Ciara, listing off her personal icons. “And I was just watching this special on Whitney Houston — that’s an icon, God bless, man.
“They know how to reinvent, they are always innovative,” she continued. “Really, when you see anything they do, they’re consistently special. They’re always doing something that you’ll remember. They make timeless moments. They’re the true definition of pure artistry. When Michael would perform, it’s lights out, nothing can touch what that man could do. He really paved the way for artists like myself. And obviously with artists like Janet and Missy, they were necessary for music…they really did pave the way for artists like myself. And they did it like no other.”
At 10:35, The Weeknd took the stage to perform a nearly 45-minute set. “It’s a fashion show — we’re all cool here, I get it,” he told the crowd, who were more than happy to oblige instructions of waving their hands over their heads (The Weeknd held the audience much more captive than Kanye West’s onstage rant did the year before).
Ty Dolla Sign stood glittering in silver unbuttoned Saint Laurent atop a step, happy to gift passersby with selfies.
“I’m supposed to be at the Jeremy Scott show — or, I mean…Philipp Plein…but I’ve got to go to Arizona for a show,” he said. “Then I’m coming back for Rihanna’s s–t, the Fenty s–t, on…Sunday? Rihanna’s the s–t. I love Rihanna as a friend, and I want to check out what she’s got.”
His ultimate icon is, naturally, Prince. “I love Prince, rest in peace,” he said. “Prince, he has style, he had actual talent — not like these other guys. It’s actually Prince playing all the instruments and I’m kind of like the same kind of guy. I do my own s–t, you know?”
Minaj made a sweep through the party before her team deemed they were “out!” before 11:15. Given how active she’s been this fashion week — a Mert and Marcus party here, a Monse front row there — the hip-hop diva must need her beauty rest.
Bella Thorne, looking to be thoroughly enjoying herself, deemed her icon of choice to be “Joan Jett.” As for what she’s most looking forward to at NYFW? “The hot dogs,” she said. And to think, we went this whole time without knowing hot dogs were a major player of NYFW.
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