MARTY’S MOUTH: Marty Staff, the former high-rolling president and chief executive of Hugo Boss USA, has hired himself a big p.r. firm, Robinson Lehrer & Montgomery, which has done work for Calvin Klein and handles corporate clients such as AOL Time Warner, Dynergy and the troubled Adelphia and Tyco.
Staff, who doubled Boss’ American business the last three years, was placed on paid administrative leave in May and resigned last week, following an internal audit at the firm that uncovered an inventory discrepancy.
So does this mean Staff is ready to talk about his plans? Not quite.
“He’s been going back and forth between the U.S. and Europe, meeting with a number of designers,” Staff’s new spokesman said somewhat vaguely Wednesday. “He’s also been looking at retail opportunities here in the U.S., and has been very gratified by the expressions of interest.”
TWICE AS NICE: Four years after boldly venturing into Paris with his first restaurant, Alcazar, Sir Terence Conran is plotting an encore. The interior design guru plans to open a 100-seat eatery in the Tremoille Hotel in late September. The hotel, steps away from Avenue Montaigne, reopened this week after a major refurbishment. The name and cuisine of the restaurant, still under construction, could not be learned.
HOME ALONE: New York and London may have switched show dates to avoid the anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, but two New York-based designers have decided that the show must go on. Karim Rashid, an industrial designer best known for his blob-like furniture, and Finnish fashion designer Pia Myrvold plan to introduce Cybercouture, their first women’s wear foray, at Deitch Projects’ on Wooster Street. Rashid also plans to DJ at a postshow party.
FIT TO A TEE: Talk about street couture. Paris designer Sebastien Rodriguez plans to deploy a $15,000 grant from LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton to open a shop offering made-to-measure T-shirts and jeans. “I can’t think of anything more essential in the modern wardrobe than a perfect T-shirt and jeans that flatter the butt,” said Rodriguez, who designs for women and men. But for those with slim wallets, Rodriguez also plans to offer off-the-rack styles. For the boutique, Rodriguez is eyeing a space on the Right Bank near the Martin Margiela store slated to open next Wednesday.
Meanwhile, four other Paris designers earned grants this week from the French government-sponsored ANDAM committee. Lutz Huelle — known simply as Lutz — earned a total of $45,000 from ANDAM, Yves Saint Laurent couture and Henri Bendel. Knitwear designer Tom Van Lingen, who also works in the studio of Sonia Rykiel, and men’s designer Thomas Engel Hart, each got $20,000. Shoe designer Dragovan got $15,000. Prior ANDAM winners include Viktor & Rolf, Margiela and Jeremy Scott.
EAU DE LIZ: The doyenne of the celebrity fragrance business appears to have reached the bottom of her jewel box. Elizabeth Taylor’s new fragrance, the first to be marketed by new owner Elizabeth Arden, will reportedly bear the name Forever Elizabeth, a marked departure from the gem-like names of her previous efforts, White Diamonds and Black Pearls. Let’s hope it does better than Forever Krystle, the doomed Dynasty-era effort by Linda Evans.