RAF’S NEW RIFF: Is avant-garde men’s wear designer Raf Simons inching closer to a full-fledged women’s collection? At his spring 2004 show Sunday night in Paris, the Belgian designer featured six women’s looks mixed with his men’s wear, which took its inspiration from Eastern philosophy, yoga and Buddhism. The women’s looks included flowing skirts and voluminous knits in pale peach or black. When asked if the showing could signal a future women’s line, Simons cryptically replied: “We'll see what the future holds.”

CHARITY BEGINS IN THE THEATER: Giorgio Armani will host a charity dinner Wednesday at his Armani Theater in Milan — a first in this location, where the designer regularly presents his runway collections and art and photo exhibitions. Profits from the dinner will benefit the city’s San Raffaele Institute and its scientific genetic research. Armani has asked Andrea Bocelli to sing for his 300 guests and chef Nobuyuki Matsuhisa to be in charge of dinner.

SILVER PEN: Fresh off a byline in the May issue of Harper’s Bazaar (a feature on Azzedine Alaïa), vintage guru Cameron Silver is finding himself in a possible second career. He’ll head to Paris to cover couture Wednesday for Distinction, the Los Angeles Times’ luxury magazine bowing this fall. While there, he’ll also pen a feature for another major national fashion mag — but he’s been instructed to keep mum on the assignment. Meanwhile, his first book is under way, a tome on Kaisik Wong, published by Rizzoli. “It’s my first time at couture. I hear it’s so much more civilized,” piped the always puckish Silver, who plans to wear nothing but custom Jack Taylor while there. As to what shows he’ll be attending, Silver teased, “I’ll see anyone who lets me in the door.”

MADONNA’S PRIVACY LAW: After a seven-month legal battle, Madonna and husband Guy Ritchie have finally succeeded in rumbling those pesky ramblers.Forced to turn up a different path, members of the British Ramblers’ Association have been banned from hiking within 15 acres of Madge’s $15 million mansion, Ashcombe House, in the Wiltshire countryside.

Under “Right to Roam” access laws, to be enforced by the British Parliament next year, ramblers would have been free to use a path that crossed within about 100 feet of the couple’s front door, wandering ancient footpaths that cross the estate. However, a second draft of the British rambling map has declared the land out of bounds and Madonna can now enjoy her 1,200 acres of parkland in peace.

Once the retreat of photographer Cecil Beaton, Ashcombe House now boasts its own pheasant shoots, hunts and trout streams.

GO WEST, YOUNG MEN: Gotham’s Cesar Padilla and Radford Brown of Cherry in the West Village are expanding to West Hollywood with a 1,200-square-foot emporium opening July 11, filled with the mad mix of high- and lowbrow vintage that has earned them celebrity outside New York. That includes the vast Joseph LaRose collection of never-worn vintage shoes and handbags, which they actually showcased in Hollywood since late 2001 at Star Shoes, the nightclub posing as a retro footwear store. “We were approved to do a second store in New York,” said Padilla, “but we ended up falling in love with the L.A. space. Besides Azarro, Givenchy couture and other precious glad rags, the pair bought up “the entire runway collection of Pierre Cardin’s early-Seventies jewelry.” There’s also a trove of old rock T-shirts. But what Padilla’s really on the hunt for has a distinctly Hollywood flair: “I’m obsessed with finding old Mad Max, postapocalyptic leather and spiked knee pads. People are going to want this stuff — I can feel it.”

OCEAN SONG: Her ex, Robert Downey Jr., was a no-show, yet chanteuse Deborah Falconer, in Blue Cult jeans and a vintage Missoni top, still praised the actor for his friendship and parenting of their nine-year-old son before going into her set for her new album, “Brave Like Me,” last Wednesday night at Reef Rescue 2003, a fund-raiser at Universal City Walk hosted by Reef Check, a program of UCLA’s Institute of the Environment, and Quiksilver Inc., that raised $100,000. It also drew attention to the declining health of the world’s coral reefs with the screening of MacGillivray Freeman’s 46-minute IMAX Theater film “Coral Reef Adventure.”

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