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WORKING WEEKEND: The old saying about the Hamptons is that they’re the Garment District with sand, but fashion types were out in such full force over the weekend that even Cynthia Rowley was forced to stand on the 3:58 p.m. Cannonball train to Montauk on Friday afternoon.
Meanwhile, Luca Luca designer Luca Orlandi drove a carful of models, including his current flame, Oluchi, to the Further Lane home of Gilles and Kelly Bensimon for a party in his honor, where the hosts seemed to have thought of everything — including enough citronella candles to wipe out any potentially West Nile- bearing insect from the entire town of East Hampton, and a tent to protect a band from the rain — everything, that is, except for dinner plates, which had to be retrieved from the caterer and carried in by several guests. The crowd included Graydon Carter, Aerin Lauder, Jessica Seinfeld, Patrick and Mia Demarchelier, Richard Mishaan, Ross Bleckner, Richard Meier and designers Jill Stuart, Nicole Miller and Elie and Rory Tahari. Orlandi, however, made an early night of it.
“I promised my friends we’d go back to Connecticut tonight to go skiing,” Orlandi said.
On Saturday, Zac Posen, Betsey Johnson, Jeffrey Banks, Stan Herman, Coach’s Reed Krakoff, Tiffany’s Robert Rufino, Rowley and Miller were among the designers who turned up at Elle Decor’s Dining by Design benefit for DIFFA in Wainscot, where, apart from the barbecued salmon, several guests attempted to feast upon the shirtless male models hired for the event. “I left my chest at home,” said telepersonality Robert Verdi to one hunk who filled in for a few latecomers at the Saks Fifth Avenue table, where Jacqui Lividini was thus rendered the sole female guest. “This is totally surreal,” she said, and made a dash back to the city just as dessert was served, leaving in her wake one heartbroken young man in board shorts, who soulfully asked, “Who was that woman?”
PIRATES OF LAS VEGAS: Las Vegas is continuing to up its fashion appeal. Following Thierry Mugler’s involvement in Cirque du Soleil’s latest production, the Treasure Island Hotel & Casino has turned to Alexander McQueen to outfit about 15 to 20 dancers in its upcoming production, “Sirens of TI.” The show, which will open Oct. 26 on a mock battleship constructed outside the resort, will feature a modern interpretation of the pirates’ famous battle. However, their swashbuckling looks weren’t designed for the production. Costume designer Ingrid Ferrin bought them at retail.
ROCK TALK: It was a study in musical and fashion extremes last weekend at Las Vegas’s Hard Rock Hotel. On Friday night, Chris Robinson opened up for Elvis Costello at The Joint wearing his usual worn jeans and a button-down, a guitar as his only accessory. Meanwhile, up in the balcony, his wife, Kate Hudson, cheered him on, equally dressed down in a pleated miniskirt and chunky cardigan that hid her growing tummy, while mom Goldie Hawn wore her signature white tank top and jeans. The only thing that wasn’t laid back were the whoops and whistles Hudson, Hawn and Kurt Russell gave after the 45-minute set. “You play it, honey,” yelled Hudson, before the family retreated to the casino’s high-roller room for a little blackjack. The next night, Duran Duran wowed the crowd — including Macy Gray, Jimmy Fallon, Adrien Brody, Jared Leto and Sarah Wynter, who brought her mom — but only after a 10-minute intro during which the rockers appeared on stage one by one, in carefully coordinated black and white suits by Helmut Lang and Stefan Schneider. “From up here in the balcony, it’s like nothing has changed in 20 years. They’re still so cute!” squealed Wynter.
“It’s really important to be unified,” said John Taylor, noting that he prefers Schneider’s skinny silhouettes because the slim lapels don’t interfere with his guitar strap. “If we don’t stick with a plan, sooner or later someone’s going to be wearing pink and someone’s going to be wearing silver.” But Nick Rhodes, ever the flamboyant keyboardist, saw nothing wrong with a little shimmer. “I feel like you’ve got to do silver lamé in Las Vegas,” he reasoned. “It’s an Elvis thing. I have a little Elvis moment every morning when I wake up.”
SUPERBRANDS TO THE RESCUE: Selfridges is set to pay tribute to eight luxury labels it has classified as “Superbrands,” with a new, 16,000-square-foot space at its Oxford Street flagship. Most of the labels, which include Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Burberry Prorsum, Chloé, Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, Marni and Stella McCartney, are already carried by Selfridges, but will move to the second floor space, which opens in October. “The new space is an extraordinary environment of innovative design and technology for the new fashion elite,” said Hazel Curry, buying manager for Selfridges’ women’s wear. Each designer will have a say in how his or her mini boutique is designed and merchandised. For example, Balenciaga designer Nicholas Ghesquière will be collaborating with the artist, Dominique Gonzalez Foerster. The store also has teamed up with Mourad Mazouz, the owner of themed restaurants Momo and Sketch in London, to take care of the refreshments. Momo Restaurant Familial will be situated in the middle of the new Superbrands area, and will serve North African dishes. Those with smaller appetites can lounge on the ottomans in the adjoining tearoom — and even smoke hookah pipes.
THE NEW FACE OF PRINGLE: There’s a new Pringle girl in town and her name is Heidi Klum. The model will replace Sophie Dahl in Pringle of Scotland’s fall advertising campaign, which breaks in the September issue of British Vogue and in Pringle stores. The German supe was chosen, according to Pringle, for her cheeky style and svelte limbs. She will appear in a series of dark, sensual images clad in cashmere wraps, a large tasseled evening scarf and an argyle-print raincoat. Photographed by Rankin and styled by Miranda Robson, the campaign is the second one to promote the brand’s new image. Last spring, Dahl appeared in sexy 1950s pinup-type poses, wearing pearls and twinsets. Today, the company will open its first, new-generation New York showroom at 650 Fifth Avenue and 52nd Street.
FASHION RHYTHM: Victoria Beckham, Bryan Ferry, Robbie Williams and David Bowie are some of the artists that will take part in London’s Fashion Rocks event for the Prince’s Trust charity. As reported, the event will take place at the Royal Albert Hall Oct. 15 and will feature 18 runway shows to be accompanied by the musician that best reflects their style. The design houses that have already confirmed include Alexander McQueen, Versace, Yves Saint Laurent, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Burberry, Gucci, Chanel, Christian Dior and Donna Karan. Elizabeth Hurley will present the event.
WELCOME TO THE BULGARI: There’s a rendering to go with the construction site that is Bulgari’s first hotel, which is being built on Milan’s Via Privata Fratelli Gabba.
The five-star Bulgari Hotel in many ways mirrors the Italian company’s sleek jewelry design. The entrance hall is in black and gold, using materials such as wood and matte black Zimbabwe marble and white, modernist furniture, according to new details unveiled on Monday. The hotel’s 58 bedrooms are minimalist yet warm in design with gold, bronze and oak details, and dark Zimbabwe marble bathrooms. Four of the bedrooms have special meditation corners, featuring a special niche with a tatami floor.
As reported, the hotel is jointly designed by Bulgari’s design team and architecture studio Antonio Citterio & Partners. It is located adjacent to Via Montenpoleone and Via della Spiga, near the Scala and trendy Brera district, and faces Milan’s lush botanical garden. For the venture, Bulgari teamed up with Luxury Group of Marriott International.