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MILLION-DOLLAR BABY: Gucci’s new spring 2011 children’s collection, designed by Frida Giannini and produced in-house by Gucci suppliers, will be unveiled on June 24 during the Pitti Bimbo trade fair. The collection for girls and boys will be divided into two age ranges spanning from 0-2 years and from 2-8 years. It includes clothing, shoes, accessories, gifts and sunglasses.
DIANA’S WARDROBE SALE: The daring black taffeta strapless gown worn by a 19-year-old Princess Diana for her first official appearance following her 1981 engagement to Prince Charles sold for 192,000 pounds, or $276,426 at current exchange, at an auction in London on Tuesday.
The dress — designed by David and Elizabeth Emanuel — was part of a 30-piece collection from the Emanuel’s archive dating from 1981 to 1986, which was sold by the Emanuels through Kerry Taylor Auctions in association with Sotheby’s. The dress was bought by Jorge Yarur, who founded Fundación Museo de la Moda in Santiago, Chile. Yarur has an extensive collection of Princess Diana’s dresses at the museum. Kerry Taylor said that Yarur had noted that he plans to eventually bequeath the dress collection to Kensington Palace in his will. The whole collection, meanwhile, fetched a total of 282,720 pounds, or $407,032, at the auction.
SEEKING THE RING: Tiffany & Co.’s first iPhone application, The Tiffany & Co. Engagement Ring Finder, will be available on iTunes June 14. The new app makes it easy to research, browse (to scale in six different carat sizes) and save a virtual collection of users’ favorite engagement rings, and it has five sections: Find Your Perfect Engagement Ring, Your Saved Rings, Find the Correct Ring Size, The Tiffany Difference and Expert Consultation. Rings can be shared with friends and family via social media.
GOWN UNDER: The Valentino retrospective mounted at Les Arts Décoratifs in Paris in 2008 is heading to Australia, due to open at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane on Aug. 7 and run through Nov. 14. Pamela Golbin, who curated the French showcase, said she “rethought” the exhibition for the space, also adding in dresses of particular local interest, having been worn by actresses Nicole Kidman and Cate Blanchett. In December, the exhibition is slated to move to a new cultural center in Singapore.
MINIMAL MADNESS: “I’m here with the Smith-ettes,” said Paul Smith, who turned out with five of his colleagues for a private view of “Maison Martin Margiela ‘20’ The Exhibition” at London’s Somerset House on Wednesday. Guests including Daphne Guinness, Gareth Pugh, Erdem Moralioglu, Serena Rees, Dinos and Tiphaine Chapman, Bella Freud and Nicky Haslam swilled Champagne on the terrace overlooking the Thames. London is the third leg of the retrospective’s global tour, following on from Antwerp and Munich. Erdem, famous for his floral embellishments and embroideries, was thrilled to pay homage to the minimalist creations. “I’m really excited that it’s finally come to London,” he said. Meanwhile, Pugh tucked into chef Tom Aikens’ mini beef burgers while chatting to Guinness in the lobby of the neoclassical building. “I do own lots of Margiela,” sighed Guinness, “But not enough.”
EXITING CHOO: Alvaro Gonzalez, who designed Jimmy Choo handbags, small leather goods, eyewear and scarves, will leave the company at the end of July, a Jimmy Choo spokeswoman has confirmed. His successor has yet to be named. Gonzalez joined the company as a freelance designer eight years ago, and his latest title was accessory design director.
CHANEL HIRE: Chanel Inc. is building its Hollywood presence with the addition of Annie Meyers-Shyer, who joins the company as West Coast public relations manager, a newly created position. Meyers-Shyer will oversee celebrity press and red-carpet requests for fashion, beauty, fine jewelry and watches, and coordinate West Coast events. Meyers-Shyer comes to Chanel from MySpace.com, where she was fashion editor. Prior to MySpace, she worked at Radar, Harper’s Bazaar and InStyle.
CORNEJO FAMILY STYLE: Maria Cornejo is unabashed about charting her own design direction, and the same might be said for her brother Jorge. He and his wife, Marla, have just opened 5 Burro Cafe in Brooklyn’s Columbia Street Waterfront District. “There is no acronym for it yet, but I wish there were. We’re pretty much pioneers,” Marla Cornejo said. Maria Cornejo is already a regular at the cantina near Brooklyn Bridge Park, but the give-and-take appears to be evenhanded. When a customer inquired about the Zero + Maria Cornejo dress Marla Cornejo was wearing recently, she was more than happy to dish about her sister-in-law’s talents. Followers can also buy 5 Burro shirts and hats, though Maria Cornejo has not lent her hand in that department. “But that’s a good idea,” said Marla Cornejo.
UP IN THE AIR: It’s a bird, it’s a plane — nope, it’s Dwight Howard. The Orlando Magic superstar is channeling his superhero by teaming up with Adidas and Warner Bros. Consumer Products to promote a new line of Superman-inspired apparel and footwear. The line of T-shirts, fleeces, jerseys and track jackets, as well as athletic footwear, will hit sporting goods, specialty and department stores for holiday.