By  on May 9, 2014

Peter Copping was in a candid mood the morning after The Costume Institute gala. Perhaps it had something to do with the previous night of good-old-fashioned after-partying with Katie Grand, his friend from their London days.

His postmortem on the evening and events leading up to it, delivered over Earl Gray at Manhattan’s Mercer Hotel, was full of honest, yet polite — Copping is a gentleman — opinions. Michelle Obama impressed; sitting in an audience of all of his designer peers for the ribbon-cutting of the Anna Wintour Costume Center was a bit surreal. As for the actual Charles James exhibition, Copping appreciated it from a designer’s perspective but wondered if it would appeal to the public. “He’s left a strong legacy,” Copping said of James, whose interiors for Dominique de Menil’s home were one of the main references for Nina Ricci’s fall collection. “I like his things, but I like the way they’re constructed. That’s the thing that was very interesting. I don’t know…they’re not kind of relevant today somehow.” On the other hand, Copping was mesmerized by the muslin samples of James’ dresses done in filmy black-and-white toile, declaring them “ultramodern.”

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