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Moss Gathering Moss * Celebrating the Year of the Monkey * Skirting Brad’s Issues

Kate Moss’ 30th birthday party is the place to be tonight in London. It’s a fancy dress ball based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, “The Beautiful and Damned,” held at the home of Kate’s friends, artist Sam Taylor-Wood and her husband, Jay Jopling.

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2004 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

The celebration may well define “wild party” for the 21st century. All the rooms will have different themes based on the book that notoriously deals with sex, drugs, alcohol and the character’s subsequent nervous breakdowns. There is even a secret door that connects both houses so the guests can slip between them to make sure they’re not missing any of the action. Kate will wear a sheer, sexy flapper dress to show off the tan she got over the last two weeks in Jamaica, where she holidayed with her best friend, Sadie Frost and Sadie’s young beau, Jackson Scott. Stella McCartney and her husband, Alasdhair Willis, Madonna and Guy Ritchie and Jefferson Hack, the father of Kate’s one-year-old daughter, Lila Grace, are just a few of the glittering things on the guest list. Sadie’s ex, Jude Law, and his new love, Sienna Miller, have not been invited. What a surprise.

Chinese New Year 4702 begins next week and it will be celebrated in high style from New York to Palm Beach and points beyond. You will be tickled to hear it’s the Year of the Monkey, which symbolizes growth and prosperity. To get in the mood, Lauren Bush will slip into an 18th-century red-and-black embroidered Mandarin jacket to ring in the New Year at Doubles on Jan. 22, the equivalent in China of our New Year’s Day. The club will be draped in red and black silk and the tables centered with oriental lanterns and exotic orchids. Grace and Chris Meigher will cohost the evening with Fred Wilson, the new chief executive of Saks Fifth Avenue, to launch a new perfume: Shanghai. Among those expected are Baron Thierry van Zuylen, the brother of the late Marie-Helene de Rothschild, the nearly immortal French socialite, and the new beau of Carole McCarthy, whose mother, Arlene Dahl, is married to Marc Rosen, who created the mysterious scent. Also expected to be in an oriental mood are Gigi and Averell Mortimer, Dina Merrill and Ted Hartley, Amanda Hearst, Muffie Potter Aston and Sherrill Aston, Elisabeth Kieselstein-Cord, Barbara Taylor Bradford, Rena Sindi, Wendy Carduner, Nicole Miller and Lauren Bush’s mother, Sharon.

Following in the chinoiserie theme, the Museum of Modern Art is launching its Anna Mae Wong Film Festival on the same night. Anna was the exotic Chinese beauty who peeked out behind many a beaded screen in early movies. Her personal style was legendary in the Thirties. Designer Maggie Norris, whose spring collection is a tribute to the Asian screen goddess, has picked a black beaded sheath from the collection for Jane Seymour to wear in an upcoming episode of “Law and Order,” where Jane will play a society femme fatale. Maggie will show the entire collection in Palm Beach on Monday at Alpark’s, which took over the old Martha store on Worth Avenue. Gung Hai Fat Choi!

Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston are both facing major crossroads, oh my. He turned 40 in December and she is filming the final episode of “Friends” next week. This year will also see the release of Brad’s blockbuster, “Troy,” in which he plays Achilles, joining the pantheon of famous men in skirts. Brad’s skirt supposedly caused one of the biggest problems on the movie. According to some — and you know how people exaggerate — he skirmished with the wardrobe mistress who kept insisting that he wear a micromini with his tunic, in keeping, she said, with what were the authentic styles of the 12th century B.C. But Brad kept refusing to show that much leg. You’ll see the compromise when the movie opens.

As for Jennifer, she wants a baby or maybe two. She feels it will probably be “the most important job I’ll ever do.” More important than “Friends”?

It’s over a decade since Candy and Aaron Spelling’s daughter, Tori, graduated from “Beverly Hills 90210.” She is now 30 and engaged to Charlie Shanian, a 34-year-old actor-writer she met onstage last year in the West Coast production of “Maybe, Baby It’s You,” a romantic comedy Charlie cowrote. They’re planning a summer wedding and if they do it Spelling style, it’s bound to be an extravaganza. As the world knows, the Spelling house in Beverly Hills is leviathan, gargantuan and really, really big.

Queen Elizabeth’s 22-year-old granddaughter, Zara Phillips, has found romance again, with 26-year-old New Zealand rugby star Caleb Ralph. They met in Sidney last month when England won the Rugby World Cup. A few weeks later, Caleb flew 12,000 miles to spend New Year’s Eve with Zara at Gatcombe Park, the country estate of her mother, Princess Anne. Nobody is particularly surprised at this turn of events because it is well-known that Zara fancies athletes. Her last serious boyfriend was a jockey and since then she’s dated rugby player Mike Tindall and polo player Mark Tomlinson. The kiwi seems to be the front-runner at the moment. Zara says, “He’s a very special man and we are having lots of fun.” As her friends know about Zara, fun is where it’s at.

Princess Stephanie and her new Portuguese circus acrobat husband, Adans Peres, have been holidaying in St. Maarten, where they visited a nudist village. This will come as no surprise to those who follow the Princess’ antics, including her recent stint as a model wrapped up in nothing but a red ribbon. She’ll do anything for charity. The disrobing was all part of a campaign to raise money for the AIDS foundation she and her brother, Prince Albert, created last summer.

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