It wouldn’t be Fashion Week in Los Angeles without plenty of extracurricular activities.
On Tuesday night, for example, parties for Hugo Boss and the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at Smashbox Studios went head to head. The German house invaded the Beverly Hills Hotel with 700 guests, who included graffiti artists, break dancers and DJ AM, also known as Adam Goldberg and Nicole Richie’s fiancé. A few hours before the Ibiza-themed party got under way, Hugo Boss designer Volker Kaechele chatted about the brand’s new retail concept that will debut in the Berlin store in late July. “Each store is independent of the others in its look,” Kaechele said, noting that the new designs will feature environments specific to each location, with furniture created by local artists and merchandise selected for each store. After Berlin, Tokyo is next up for redesign.
Across town in Culver City, a totally different scene was taking place at fashion week’s Rock the Runway party, held at the new HD Buttercup megastore in the historic Helms Bakery Building. The event, which raised over $100,000 for the City of Hope, attracted 1,200 guests. Host Cindy Crawford tried, to no avail, to quiet the crowd for her introductions, and the din ensued throughout the too-short acoustic show by the Yeah Yeah Yeah’s. After their performance, singer Karen O patiently took photographs with fan after fan while guitarist Nick Zinner explained that the indie darlings are about to record a new album in Los Angeles. O’s commute to the studio should be a cinch, now that she’s moved from New York to the Eastside L.A. hood Silver Lake.
On Wednesday night, Vogue threw a party at Fred Segal Flair for Anna Sui and the new phone she designed for Samsung, which features the designer’s purple-and-black motif and mini-Anna screen savers. “They only asked me and Diane von Furstenberg to design a phone, so how could I say no?” asked the maroon-clad Sui. Her clothes sell at the Santa Monica boutique, which stayed open late to host a gaggle of Sui-lovers, including Michelle Hicks, Monet Mazur (who’s eight months pregnant with Alex de Rakoff’s baby), Reese Witherspoon and Marc Jacobs. The designers claimed it was coincidence that brought their events on back-to-back nights. “I’d go anywhere for Anna,” said Jacobs. “In fact, the last time I was in L.A. was for her store opening.” (Sui’s Sunset Plaza boutique has since closed.) “I can’t believe how over budget we are with the store opening,” Jacobs later added. “We’re like the Francis Ford Coppola of LVMH.”
This story first appeared in the March 18, 2005 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Meanwhile, Selma Blair and Karen Zambos, manager of Tracey Ross, had other things to celebrate at their Elegantly Waisted party, held poolside at the Chateau Marmont in honor of their new belt brand. Friends Christina Ricci, Kerry Washington, Evan Rachel Wood and Richie were overheard exchanging remedies for their recent colds while they sipped tequila-spiked cocktails. Eventually, Blair, dressed in a watermelon-colored Marc Jacobs sheath with her own white belt wrapped twice around her waist, steered the talk back to fashion. “Now that I have all [the belts] I need,” she said, “I don’t know whether to expand [my collection] with bags and other accessories or keep it simple.”