SNOW DAY: French luxury goods house Hermès used the occasion of its annual shareholder’s meeting Tuesday to preview its fall-winter advertising campaign, which was shot in the wintry surroundings of Sweden’s Lapland and features a reindeer hauling a sled piled high with orange gift boxes and accessories suspended in giant chunks of ice. At the meeting, chief executive Patrick Thomas told shareholders the Paris-based company has delayed two of its store projects in China and has put in place cost saving measures such as a hiring freeze, except for the leather goods department, due to the current economic downturn.
ANYA MEETS THE QUEEN: Anya Hindmarch traveled to Buckingham Palace Tuesday to meet Queen Elizabeth II, and receive her first British order of chivalry. Hindmarch was awarded an MBE, or Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for her services to the British fashion industry. “It was such a fantastic honor to meet the Queen and a very special occasion to share with my family,” said Hindmarch after the ceremony. “The entire experience made me feel so proud to be British! Most definitely a memory to cherish forever.” Hindmarch wore a Marni cream dress and beige coat, and carried a python clutch from her own 2010 cruise collection. Other MBE recipients this year include Nicky Kinnaird of Space NK and interior decorator Kelly Hoppen. Past recipients include Hussein Chalayan, Jane Shepherdson, Zara Phillips and Serena Rees, the co-founder of Agent Provocateur.
SCENTED LETTERS: A.P.C., the French contemporary brand, will dive into the fragrance business this fall with the launch of its first scent. The unisex eau — whose name and other details remain hush-hush — will be available in A.P.C. stores starting September.
MODEL BEHAVIOR: When it comes to charity, Coco Rocha doesn’t just talk the talk, she walks the walk. On Sunday, Rocha, along with 20 other models from the Elite agency in Canada, traveled to sleepy Barrie, Ontario — outside of her birthplace of Toronto — to participate in the Runway for Ride fashion show, which benefited Sears National Kids Cancer Ride. (The show also featured a cast of nonmodels, including members of the local fire department.) The flame-haired model helped organize the fund-raiser after a family friend’s bout with leukemia. “I wanted to get involved by doing what I do best,” she said.
HELPING HAND: A crop of young designers studying at the Polimoda Institute in Florence will be giving big names in fashion a run for their money. To mark the very first fashion week, beginning Thursday and running to June 11, which was organized by the fashion school, a number of major brands such as Emilio Pucci, Ermenegildo Zegna, Salvatore Ferragamo, Hermès, Max Mara and Versace along with galleries, book stores and various shops around town will be lending space in their boutiques for designs created by Polimoda’s students. “This is a clear sign of interest on the part of the most noteworthy brands toward the work of young, emerging designers who carry with them a cultural background full of creativity and stimuli, useful starting points for the development of what will become tomorrow’s fashion collections,” said Linda Loppa, director of Polimoda.
Polimoda offers undergraduate and graduate design master courses in the production, sales, marketing and merchandising sectors of the fashion industry, both in English and Italian. It’s particularly well-known for its specialized courses in fashion marketing and its fashion merchandising program and preps students looking to specialize in accessories. It was founded in 1986 as a joint project cofinanced by the cities of Florence and Prato, along with entrepreneurial associations and the collaboration of the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York.
DUAL CELEBRATION: Merkato 55, now called Le 55, reopened on Thursday featuring a menu designed by chef Philip Guardione, former head chef of the Four Seasons in Milan. Fernanda Motta, the brunch hot spot’s co-owner and host of “Brazil’s Next Top Model” was on hand in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District to fete the restaurant and her birthday. “What can I say? We wanted a fresh start,” she said of the restaurant’s brief closing and name change. “I am a Gemini after all.” Hosting Motta’s celebration — a relatively intimate dinner for 50 — was close friend and Victoria’s Secret “angel” Alessandra Ambrosia. After a leisurely Latin meal (the last course wasn’t served until midnight), the women led the crew downstairs to Bijoux for cocktails.