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YANKEES INVADE LONDON: Jeff Koons and Beth Ditto held court in different corners of London Wednesday night, showing their British pals just what American creativity is all about. Koons held a private view of his show “Popeye Series,” which runs until Sept. 13 at the Serpentine Gallery in Hyde Park, with guests including Stella McCartney, Alasdhair Willis, Mike Figgis and Tracey Emin. Meanwhile, over at Sketch, the restaurant and club near Oxford Circus, curvy crooner Ditto showed off her new collection for Evans, the plus-size brand owned by Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia Group. Guests included Green, Kate Moss, Simon Cowell, Pam Hogg and Yasmin Le Bon — who will be doing a line for Wallis, another of Arcadia’s brands, in September. “I wanted to make something special, just for us, something never seen before,” said Ditto. “I hope the clothes inspire you to think outside the box.”
PARIS JE T’AIME: The Paris haute couture will get an American twist courtesy of Calvin Klein Collection. Tonight, Francisco Costa and Italo Zucchelli are taking over Apicius, the chic Right Bank eatery — and they are expected to bring along quite a celebrity crowd. Confirmed guests include Thandie Newton, Claire Danes, Coco Brandolini, Loulou de la Falaise, Elodie Bouchez, Lauren Santo Domingo, Tatiana Santo Domingo, Clotilde De Savoie, Astrid Muñoz, Fabiola Beracasa and Eugenie Niarchos — as well as a slew of editors in town for the show.
WHAT GOES AROUND: Expectations were high as a crowd of German celebrities and exhibitors from Bread & Butter waited for a glimpse of Justin Timberlake on Wednesday night. Earlier in the day, the singer and fashion entrepreneur made a stop at the booth of his brand, William Rast, then hit a party at the Silver Wings club. “I wouldn’t stray far from saying that Berlin and L.A. are on par with the same fashion,” said Rast co-owner Trace Ayala, while Timberlake stayed ensconced in a VIP area behind curtains and mountainous bouncers. The Rast brand is on a mini-European tour, hitting Selfridges in London and Colette in Paris, along with Berlin.
LONDON CALLING: French fashion house Celine is without a standalone boutique in London after closing its Bruton Street store last week. According to a spokeswoman, there are plans to reopen a store in London, but there is no firm time frame. She brushed off speculation Phoebe Philo’s new collection for Celine could be showcased at the concept store Dover Street Market, saying she hadn’t heard of such plans. Dover Street Market officials weren’t available for comment.
HONOR ROLL: Recognition may come too late for some, but on Tuesday, Madame Carven, 99, is to receive a Legion of Honor from French President Nicolas Sarkozy at the Elysée Palace. Known as “the smallest of the big couturiers,” the diminutive figure, recognized as one of the first designers to have introduced a ready-to-wear sensibility to the couture scene, specialized in fashions for petite women, with the strapless bra said to be among her inventions. A passionate traveler, Carven also loved to work with ethnic fabrics such as raffia. Didier Grumbach is also expected to honor Carven at couture week’s closing ceremony at the Musée Galliéra on Thursday. Carven bequeathed her archives to the museum.
JET SET: Givenchy, which stages its couture show Tuesday, got a jump start over the weekend when Madonna took to the stage in London in an embroidered and jet bead-encrusted couture jacket and waistcoat by Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci. The singer’s Sticky & Sweet tour has resumed in Europe, with a stop in Paris slated for Thursday.