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“I can’t wait for the Allegra Hicks bandwagon to leave New York,” joked Ghislaine Maxwell as she prepared for another round of festivities on Wednesday in honor of the British designer. The night after her own party welcoming Hicks to these shores, Maxwell was only too happy to hand the hostess reins over to Rena Sindi, who feted the official opening of Hicks’ store with a dinner for 80 at Swifty’s.
As the crowd flooded into the miniscule restaurant, guests such as Renée Rockefeller, Lillian von Stauffenberg, Jennifer Creel, “Namesake” actress Zuleikha Robinson and Eva Lorenzotti tried to stay upright. “I just want a drink,” sighed Alex Kramer as she tried in vain to get to the bar, while Sindi ran around tirelessly rearranging the table seatings.
The famed party-giver (Sindi’s book is called “Be My Guest,” after all) was only in town for two days to support Hicks. Had she been meticulously planning this evening?
“I whipped it together in two weeks!” she boasted. The creation of Hicks’ store (whose size was as Lilliputian as Swifty’s) was a much more complicated task.
“Of course I like it — I designed it!” said her husband, Ashley Hicks. And, while the restaurant was a veritable Sea World, Hicks-style, with tables draped in her fabrics and coral centerpieces evoking her oceanic themes, not everyone was able to show off her clothes.
“It’s Miu Miu,” said Gigi Mortimer of her multicolored top. “I thought it looked kind of like Allegra Hicks. I tried to wear one of her dresses, but it was too summery and see-through.”
Good thing she went with the top: When Sindi ushered people to their seats, Mortimer was forced to climb over the table and onto the banquette just to reach hers. New lovebirds Tory Burch and Lance Armstrong flitted in late and refused to pose for pictures together. After a dinner of salmon, steak and chocolate soufflé, the bandwagon trundled on as many guests turned Swifty’s into an impromptu dance club.
This story first appeared in the March 20, 2007 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
A few evenings later in San Francisco, the de Young Museum was the place to be for the fourth annual Fine Arts Museums Junior Committee Mid-Winter Gala. Although it fell on Saint Patrick’s Day, the party featured witty Union Jack-themed decor by Stanlee Gatti with a quartet of dancers in flirty minikilts and boots, all to honor Vivienne Westwood‘s new show at the museum.
Victoria Traina flew in from New York for the event, hand-carrying her trophy Christian Lacroix couture gown — a froth of silk. Sis Vanessa opted for vintage Balmain with a Prada turban, looking a lot like her pals Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, who have been spotted with the very same accessory.
But Westwood remained the inspiration for the fashion set. “Vivienne Westwood sets the standard for glamour,” said Tatiana Sorokko, who in the Eighties was Westwood’s preferred model.
Also nibbling on Brit-style fare were Trevor and Alexis Traina, Shannon Bavaro, Cameron Silver, Jennifer Biederbeck, Connie Nielsen, Katie Traina, Kate Harbin, Claiborne Swanson and Kimberly Bini.