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HAPPY FEET: Princess Beatrice of York, daughter of Prince Andrew and Fergie, hit The Standard Hotel in New York last week for a fete celebrating Original Penguin’s snowboard collaboration with K2. The royal partygoer got a first peek at the technically advanced snowboard, boots and binding package, which is adorned with Original Penguin’s preppy motifs, such as argyle and check patterns. The partnership with Seattle-based K2 is the first winter sports gear project for the Perry Ellis International-owned contemporary brand. The design will be available for one season at K2-authorized retail dealers and the company’s e-commerce site, and will also be displayed at Original Penguin’s six retail stores. The board alone retails for $549 and the board, boots and binding package is $950.
This story first appeared in the August 13, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
CIRCA SIGNS ON: Circa Jewels has partnered with Bluefly.com to launch “Circa at Bluefly,” an online jewelry-buying service where Circa clients can now sell their jewelry directly through the online retailer. Clients wanting to part with their Van Cleef & Arpels, Cartier or vintage Tiffany baubles can contact a Circa buyer and set up an appointment with the nearest Circa office or mail in the jewelry for an immediate offer. The piece is then listed on Bluefly.com. Circa has buyers in its New York, Washington, Palm Beach, Chicago, San Francisco and Hong Kong offices.
BROOKLYN BOUND: UNIS fans will soon have a Brooklyn outpost to forage for Eunice Lee’s designs. Wednesday night the designer will christen an annex at Smith + Butler at 225 Smith Street in Carroll Gardens. Aside from Saint-Germain-made cocktails and one-night-only discounts on fall merchandise, revelers will have musical incentive to keep the merriment going — Marisa Competello and Sarah Ball will be on hand to perform. Lee and her pressman, Johnny Misheff, are sure to be among the liveliest partygoers since they have been friends with the duo for years.
RIGHT BANK, LEFT BANK: Parisians might have left in droves for their traditional August vacations, but retailers in Paris are busy getting ready for the back-to-school season next month with new store openings. Little Marc, Marc Jacobs’ children’s wear line, plans to bring Manhattan chic to Parisian streets with the opening of a boutique on the Right Bank, where a branch of Marc by Marc Jacobs already resides. The store, designed by architect Stephan Jaklitsch, will join its older sibling in September.
Across the river on the Left Bank, Dorothée Bis, the iconic Sixties brand acquired by BCBG Max Azria in 2003, will make its comeback with a new store not too far from its original premises on Rue de Sevres. Expected to open in early fall, the space will feature the fashion house’s reworked vintage printed motifs and multicolor pieces.
MOTION PICTURES: The Bon Marché department store in Paris is to showcase never-before-seen footage by the late Guy Bourdin, the fashion photographer best known for his work with Chanel, Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue. With his unique eye, Bourdin changed the traditional image of glamour, often placing products with scenes evoking violence, death, sexuality and surrealism. The controversial artist, who wanted his photographs to be destroyed after his death in 1991, rarely accepted accolades for his work, turning down the Grand Prix National de la Photographie awarded by the French Ministry of Culture. “Guy Bourdin, ses films,” running from Sept. 18 to Oct. 29, revisits his short films produced between the Sixties and Eighties. The clips — ranging from studio shoots to favorite locations, “works in progress” to personal moments — will be projected on floating screens in darkrooms, mimicking the surrealism Bourdin captured “by accident” for his fashion-world campaigns.
CITY SLICKERS: The new collection of Louis Vuitton city guides for 2010 gives a hint of happening and chic destinations. For instance, Tel Aviv, with the opening next fall of a new design museum designed by Ron Arad and its dynamic nightlife, is one of the guide’s newcomers. There’s also Knokke-le-Zoute, the Flemish resort where Louis Vuitton opened its first store 20 years ago. London, Los Angeles and Rome also get devoted issues. The guides come out Oct. 15.
ARTS AND COMMERCE: LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton is broadening its support of the arts. On Wednesday, the company’s North American arm unveiled a two-year partnership with the American Composers Orchestra to encourage new works by American composers. The first such piece, by composer Erin Gee, will have its premiere at Carnegie Hall on Nov. 30. “LVMH and American Composers Orchestra share a commitment to supporting emerging American artists,” said Renaud Dutreil, chairman of LVMH in North America. “For LVMH, this stems directly from our work to foster creative passion and exalt artistic endeavor. We consider it a great privilege to help artists begin their careers, and offer them the opportunity to express and develop the full scope of their talent.”
TRAVEL PREP: Those utilitarian LeSportsac nylon bags are getting a blue-blood makeover, courtesy of Lilly Pulitzer. The two companies have joined forces for a spring collection of handbags, totes, small accessories, travel bags and even a tennis case, all offered in three different Pulitzer prints. “The collaboration with LeSportsac was such a natural for us,” said Janie Schoenborn, creative director of Lilly Pulitzer, who noted that LeSportsac’s previous work with Stella McCartney, Diane von Furstenberg and Jonathan Adler demonstrated “how well colorful prints manifest themselves on classic, versatile bags.” The three prints — cobranded specifically for the collaboration — center on endangered species such as Florida panthers (other “animals of the Everglades” are also featured). The collection will be available in both Lilly Pulitzer and LeSportsac freestanding stores, as well as on the companies’ Web sites.
DO-IT-YOURSELF DRESSING: At Third Avenue and 60th Street Wednesday at 1 p.m., a familiar voice rang out. It was Donna Karan, speaking from a TV monitor in the windows of Bloomingdale’s about her “system of dressing.” But in true recessionary times, rather than talk about her “seven easy pieces,” which was the foundation of her company 25 years ago, she boiled it down to “two-piece dressing.” She spoke about the great crisp white shirt and black pencil skirt, and the wonderful turtleneck and pair of pants. Several passersby stopped to listen, and one was moved to go back into Bloomingdale’s, where a sign in the windows said company reps would be working with customers all day and evening Wednesday to show them how to dress this season. However, upon venturing up to the fourth floor, the Donna Karan department was empty and there were no salespeople behind the desk within the in-store shop. A call was placed to Bloomingdale’s public relations department, which admitted the in-store event would take place from 4 to 7 p.m., a slight omission in the store windows and signage in the department touting the event.
JOE KNOWS BASKETBALL: Joe Joseph Abboud, the men’s wear line from JA Apparel Corp. that is being sold exclusively at J.C. Penney, had its launch party at the famous Cage basketball court on West Third Street in Greenwich Village in May, and on Saturday, it’s hosting an NBA block party outside the retailer’s store in Herald Square. Open to the public, the event, which will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., will feature a runway fashion show with current, former and future players, all sporting the Joe fall collection. The day’s festivities will include autograph sessions, fan photos with the NBA Championship Trophy and a live performance by the New Jersey Nets Dancers. The fashion show, which kicks off at 1 p.m., will be emceed by former Knicks great — and fashion maven — Walt “Clyde” Frazier and is scheduled to include John Starks, Allan Houston, Chris Duhon, Randy Foye and others.
BOOZE BAG: The advent of the artisanal cocktail culture has turned mixology into a bona fide profession — one that requires a toolbox worth of equipment. Just ask Jim Meehan, bartender and managing partner at Please Don’t Tell, an East Village speakeasy specializing in couture libations, who has to schlep multiple jiggers, strainers, ice picks, shakers and knives when performing regular demonstrations in New York and abroad. “There is something not very elegant about showing up to a liquor company with a backpack,” said Meehan, who won bartender of the year at this year’s Tales of the Cocktail, the so-called Olympics of bartending.
It’s fitting, then, that Meehan was tapped to design a bartender’s bag for Moore & Giles — a first in a series of “occupational” one-offs for the Virginia-based company. Inspired by camera lens bags, the square waxed cotton carrier includes a waterproof main compartment with enough room for a few shakers, serving glasses and a 750-ml. bottle; a front pocket with elastic sleeves for strainers, and a separate roll-up for knives and picks. The Meehan Bag, which will be sold on the firm’s Web site, bartending trade outlets and other stores, will retail for $645.