FASHIONABLY POLITICAL: The fashion industry is leaving its mark on the Democratic National Convention this week.

Designer Charles Nolan, who is putting the final touches on his spring collection for New York Fashion Week, accompanied his partner, Andrew Tobias, treasurer of the Democratic National Committee, to lend fashion and moral support. Nolan instructed Tobias to unbutton his suit blazer before taking the stage on Monday night to tout Sen. Barack Obama’s economic plan and excoriate the Bush administration’s “mismanagement” of the economy for the past eight years. But when Tobias reached the stage, the handlers told him to button the blazer and he was left with a “fashion” moment in prime time. Tobias suffered a similar fashion faux pas years earlier in an appearance on the “Tonight Show With Johnny Carson” and vowed to always keep his jacket unbuttoned.

This story first appeared in the August 27, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Bobbi Brown is also in Denver, but not in the role of makeup artist. As a delegate in the New Jersey delegation, Brown will play a role in supporting the party’s platform, vice presidential nominee and presidential candidate.

Speaking of presidential nominees, Obama, who has touted American competitiveness on the campaign trail, will wear a union-made Hartmarx suit, stitched in his hometown of Chicago, on Thursday night when he accepts the party’s nomination at Invesco Mile High stadium, noted Bruce Raynor, general president of Unite Here, the main apparel union that endorsed Obama early in the primaries.

BLOGS CAN BE MEAN: Mark Halperin, Time’s senior political analyst, aggregates news himself at’s The Page, so some bystanders were taken aback when he approached Arianna Huffington to complain about his treatment on her site, which hosts a range of voices that are virtually unfiltered. At a Time breakfast held at the convention, a source on the ground saw Halperin take Huffington to task for what he considered harsh treatment on the Huffington Post. When Huffington asked what he was referring to, he invited her to Google him.

As of Tuesday evening, the fifth Google result for Halperin was indeed a blog post by Jason Linkins on the Huffington Post dated Aug. 22, which compared The Page with “a comic book, full of listicles for children,” and added: “It’s really hard to believe that a grown-up wrote this, or that a room full of grown-ups said, ‘Hey, let’s actually pay for this.’” Previous posts by the HuffPo’s massive stable of bloggers include “Halperin often gives evidence of having undergone a Rovian mind-meld” (from Eric Alterman), “Halperin leverages The Page — and Time’s credibility — to stoke gossip, innuendo and even advise politicians on dirty tricks” (from the Nation’s Ari Melber) and the headline “Mark Halperin Finally Concedes the Battle to the Totally Obvious” (from Linkins again, a staff political reporter at the HuffPo who seems to have a special animus for Halperin). And yet the tone is hardly unusual for the site, nor for the blogosphere. It seems that, even in new media, old sensitivities prevail. A Time spokeswoman declined comment.

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