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Fashion Invasion

They’ll take Manhattan - literally. There are so many foreign designers here this week that the studios of Europe must be as empty as the sample closets of every fashion public relations firm in town.

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They’ll take Manhattan — literally. There are so many foreign designers here this week that the studios of Europe must be as empty as the sample closets of every fashion public relations firm in town. And where the Fashion Flock gather, there are bound to be luncheons, dinners, launch events, collection openings, parties, after parties and after-after parties. The centerpiece is, of course, the Costume Institute gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art tonight in honor of the Paul Poiret exhibit. But, face it, that’s just an excuse to come to New York. WWD caught up with visiting designers and their planned Gotham shenanigans while testing their knowledge of the Big Apple.

Valentino


Landed: May 5 on his private jet.

Home away from home: His apartment on East 70th Street.

Eats out at: The Four Seasons and Bar Pitti.

Well-Met companions: Daphne Guinness and Jennifer Garner.

Possible excursion: The Tom Ford store as it’s a stone’s throw from his apartment.

Have you heard about the Second Avenue subway?: No.

What do you know about A-Rod?: Mr. Valentino has not heard of A-Rod.

Karl Lagerfeld

Home away from home: The Mercer Hotel.

Diversions: “I will go to the Met ball for the Poiret show and Anna Wintour’s party. There’s not enough time for this short trip to visit many places. I will only go to the Pace/MacGill Gallery.”

Well-Met companion: Lady Amanda Harlech.

Eats out at: Omen and Matsuri.

Getting around town in: “I hate limos and I love minibuses.”

What do you know about A-Rod?: “I don’t know B-rod! P.S.: I was told this word has a double meaning…but English is not my first language.”

Paolo Melim Andersson, Chloé

Landed: May 3, on Air France.

Home away from home: The Bowery Hotel.

Diversions: “It changes on every visit. There are a few stores in SoHo that I try not to miss, such as Tsubi. There’s also a store on Prince Street that sells [the Australian skater brand] Perks and Mini, which I love. I’ll be looking to buy some Alden shoes and a hippy perfume oil called Rain that I love. It smells like a mixture of melon and wet tarmac.”

Met getup: Underwear by Knize, shoes by New & Lingwood, a shirt and bow tie by Charvet and a smoking jacket by Lanvin. “I haven’t sorted out the socks yet.”

Roberta Armani

Landed: May 6 on a commercial flight.

Home away from home: Uncle Giorgio’s New York apartment. “My uncle’s apartment is perfect for quick trips to New York.”

Diversions: “I’m looking forward to seeing the Greek and Roman wing of the Metropolitan Museum, which everyone is talking about at the moment, as well as the Costume Institute’s Poiret exhibition.”

Evening hangouts: Morandi’s, The Box, the Lobby Bar of the Bowery Hotel and the rooftop of the Gramercy Park Hotel.

Well-Met companion: “I will host a table with Alicia Keys.”

Met getup: “I’m bringing two beautiful evening dresses with me, but my final choice will be a surprise. No need to say it will be Giorgio Armani.”

Alber Elbaz

Landed: May 3, Air France.

Home away from home: The Peninsula Hotel.

Diversions: Appointments with retailers; a visit to Saks Fifth Avenue at midday for the launch of Lanvin’s new scent, Rumeur, on Friday; designing in his hotel room Saturday and Sunday; the Met on Monday, and the unveiling of Kate Moss’ line for Topshop at Barneys on Tuesday, followed by a Time Magazine dinner.

Drive-by: Fashion Institute of Technology on Friday afternoon to discuss the upcoming Lanvin exhibition there in September.

Met getup: A tuxedo custom-made for the event in the Lanvin atelier.

Well-Met Companion: Julie Gilhart, due to wear a gold lamé dress from Lanvin’s spring collection.

What do you know about A-Rod?: “Is it the new iPod?”

Alberta Ferretti

Landed: May 6.

Home away from home: The Peninsula Hotel.

Hanging around until: May 15, after her cruise presentation.

Diversions: A visit to the Gagosian Gallery. “I like looking for jewelry and rare images, so I often go to the Stanley Wise Gallery to buy vintage fashion images and illustrations.”

Getting around town in: An SUV.

Well-Met companions: Sandra Bullock, Gesine Bullock-Prado, Claudia Schiffer and Marina Abramovic.

What do you know about A-Rod?: “It’s the nickname of New York Yankees player…and if I were to ask you who Bobo is?”

Christopher Bailey

Landed: May 6.

Home away from home: The Peninsula Hotel.

Diversions: “I am looking forward to seeing my friend Hugh Dancy in his play ‘Journey’s End.'”

Keeps fit by: “I am not a frequent visitor to any gym.”

Eats out at: “I love a good old-fashion American diner.”

Met getup: A Burberry Prorsum tuxedo.

Have you heard of the Second Avenue subway?: “Not really, but I have just Googled it so I have now.”

Brian Atwood

Landed: Today.

Home away from home: The Mercer Hotel.

Diversions: “New York is one of my homes, but this is just a quick visit specifically for the Costume Institute Gala. Luckily it happens to take place at the Met; I always try to sneak off to take a peak at one of my favorite rooms, the Antonio Ratti textile center or the Photograph Gallery.”

Dines at: Mr. Chow’s and Da Umberto’s.

Well-Met companion: “Lindsay Lohan — I have to say that actually I am really excited as the new creative director at Bally. It is the first time I have had the opportunity to dress someone from head to toe. We have made Lindsay a full-length silk dress with a jeweled bodice, matching Galuchat clutch and a simply sexy black satin sandal inspired by a Fifties Bally original.”

Roberto Cavalli

Home away from home: “My apartment in Midtown. I live on the 46th floor and I love nothing more than my view.”

Diversions: “I don’t like to make too many plans ahead of time. I’m attending the Met dinner on Monday and then I’ll do some business and catch up with friends. I love just walking around Chelsea and letting the artwork displayed in the windows guide me. I usually go visit my good friend Julian Schnabel at his studio to see what he’s working on…and the Murakami exhibit at the Gagosian is definitely on my agenda.”

Getting around town in: “I will get around by car with my trusted driver.”

Eats out at: “Cipriani downtown is always a favorite, for my classic Italian favorites — a great pasta. The Waverly Inn is also becoming a favorite — I love the atmosphere — a great American classic .

What he’ll buy: A new digital camera, art books.

Big moment: A party in his honor on Sunday night, with invited guests like Bette Midler, Susan Gutfreund and Lili Cavendish.

What do you know about A-Rod?: “Is he a new designer?”

Roland Mouret

Landed: May 6, on a Silverjet private service.

Home away from home: Soho House .

Diversions: “The Poiret exhibition at the Metropolitan should be the cherry on the cake.”

Eats out at: Nobu.

Well-Met companion: Jacquetta Wheeler.

Met getup: “Kilgour as always, the best Savile Row tailor.”

Tom Ford drive-by?: “I’m very excited to see the Tom Ford store. I am interested to see the reality of his vision.”

Giambattista Valli

Landed: May 3.

Home away from home: The Gramercy Park Hotel.

Keeps fit by: “I don’t do the gym, I do tai chi or yoga.”

Dines at: Da Silvano.

Met getup: “It will be classical, but there will be a surprise twist around my pearl necklace.”

Well-Met companion: “Mischa Barton. She’ll be wearing a special dress inspired by my fall collection.”

Giles Deacon

Landed: May 3, on a commercial flight.

Home away from home: Soho House.

Diversions: “To say ‘Hi’ to the guys at Barneys, see how the collection is doing on the shop floor and say a big thank you to the nice sales staff.”

Will wander about: Bleecker Street and the Lower East Side.

Keeps fit by: “I always run in Central Park. It’s an old cliché, but I love it. I think I run the wrong way though — I think everyone does it counterclockwise and I seem to do it clockwise. Or vice versa.”

Met getup: A Louis Vuitton black tie suit.

What do you know about A-Rod?: “What is it? Oh, I’m very ignorant about basketball.”

Christian Louboutin

Landed: May 5, on a commercial flight.

Home away from home: Diane von Furstenberg’s place.

Diversions: “I want to go to a gallery called Clampart to buy some works by James Bidgood, a wonderful photographer from the Sixties. I had a sculpture done by Ahn Duong I need to bring back to Paris on the plane.”

Getting around town in: “Town car, and a lot of walking.”

Eats out at: “Before the Met ball, I will have some meatballs at the Waverly Inn.”

Keeps fit by: “I might check out the trapeze class on the Pier. On Tuesday morning, I may flip.”

Met attire: “A super embroidered vest I had made in India just for the occasion — and a black tie.”

Have you heard about the Second Avenue subway?: “I never take the subway in New York. I took it twice, and I got lost.”

What do you know about A-Rod?: “Is that a restaurant?”

Viktor & Rolf:

Landed: May 4.

Home away from home: The Mandarin Oriental.

Diversions: Visiting the Andrea Rosen Gallery.

Eat out at: Matsuri.

Getting around town in: A Town car.

Met getups: A Viktor & Rolf Monsieur tux.

Well-Met companion: “Each other, and Shalom Harlow.”

Drive-bys: The Tom Ford store on Tuesday at 10 a.m.

Have you heard about the Second Avenue subway?: “We don’t do public transport.”

Vanessa Seward, Azzaro

Home away from home: The Gramercy Park Hotel .

Diversions: “Sunday I will watch the French elections chez Frederic Malle. I also plan to meet with singer April March, whom Bertrand Burgalat produces. I plan to visit the Poiret exhibit.”

Shopping at: “I love Urban Outfitters. We don’t have it in Paris.”

Met getup: An Azarro gown in white and crystal with a white marabou bolero, a Boucheron bracelet and a Judith Leiber bag.

Well-Met companion: Bertrand Burgalat.

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