PARIS – Lisa Haydon’s eyes widened when the PR at the Nirav Modi stand at the Biennale des Antiquaires told her the size of the pear-shaped yellow diamond on her finger: 25 carats.
The Bollywood actress did a better job describing the diamond and spinel necklace and earrings she wore, explaining the brilliant cuts and the water-splash arrangement of the stones.
Asked about her strapless dress for Thursday night’s black-tie gala opening, she froze. “Can you tell me what I’m wearing?” she asked, as the PR fished down the back for a label.
Haydon is heading to London to shoot her next movie: A romantic comedy about opportunistic nuptials. “We get married for the visa,” she explained.
Ségolène Gallienne, touring the blue-chip galleries installed under the Grand Palais’ 11-storey glass cupola, was also stumped about her figure-hugging black sheath. “Valentino maybe? Can you check?” she said, lifting her ponytail to let a reporter glance at the label, which read Victoria Beckham.
Her earrings were a no-brainer: “A gift from my husband,” said Gallienne, daughter of Belgian financier Albert Frère.
Becca Cason Thrash knew exactly what was on her back: Vintage Thierry Mugler.
“I’m pulling out all my old Muglers and all my old Montanas, and things by Bernard Perris. He was huge in the Eighties,” she said. “I’m just so happy I can fit into all of them.”
The Houston philanthropist is plotting her next Liaisons au Louvre fundraiser for next year – this time twinned with a charity event for Venetian Heritage she’s dubbing La Dolce Vita. She’s building a program of three days in Paris and three days in Venice, with a travel day in between.
Berndadette Chirac, Jacques Grange, Lorenz Bäumer, and Didier Ludot were among those who settled in for a three-course dinner by Guy Savoy.
Wearing an Alexander McQueen tuxedo jacket with barbed-wire embellishments on the lapels, Bäumer said he revamped his Place Vendôme boutique with a new concept, allowing clients to watch the atelier at work; discover his collections of whiskeys and rums; and gaze at his 100 photos of the famous square’s column, just renovated.
“High jewelry is seen as one of the most opaque industries,” he related. “Not any more.”