It wasn’t the typical mall crowd congregating Wednesday evening in a corner store — formerly home to prom dress haven Cache — at the Time Warner Center in New York. Mario Batali, Jessica Seinfeld, Jill Kargman, and the Valentino entourage, old and new, of creative directors Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli, plus Giancarlo Giammetti, Bruce Hoeksema and Carlos Souza mingled amongst displays of small leather goods, fine jewelry and kitchenwares all temporarily for sale at the Goop Mrkt pop-up shop. Presiding over it all was the Goop-meister herself Gwyneth Paltrow, looking like a grown-up teenage dream in a micro mini, embroidered tulle dress that was part of the special Wonder Woman-inspired Valentino x Goop capsule collaboration displayed on the right wall of the store.
Paltrow gathered her friends and family, including her brother Jake and her mother Blythe Danner, and many of the Goop Mrkt’s vendors and collaborators for a cocktail party in the store, which opened Nov. 23, followed by a private dinner at A Voce to honor Chiuri and Piccioli. “We worked very hard to become a company that could possibly be worthy of a collaboration with somebody like Pierpaolo and Maria Grazia and everyone at Valentino,” Paltrow said during a toast. “We feel so honored that they took the time and their creative power and energy to collaborate with us.”
The space was designed by Robin Standefer and Stephen Alesch, of the design firm Roman and Williams, whose credits include The Boom Boom Room and Paltrow’s TriBeCa apartment. Everything in the pop-up, from the clothes to the bespoke furnishings, including tables and cabinets by Roman and Williams, is for sale. And people have been buying. “I had to tell them to start putting stickers on the sold furniture and we’ll send it to the customer later,” Standefer said. “Otherwise, this place is going to be empty.’”
Maybe not. The Valentino merch was sticker shock-inducing, even for those for whom one assumes money is no object. “Well, Carlos [Souza] put it on me,” said Seinfeld when asked if she was purchasing the blue sequined Valentino x Goop bomber on her shoulders. “Then I saw the price. I wouldn’t feel good about myself if I bought it, but I love it so much I haven’t taken it off yet because I keep imaging there’s some reason I deserve it.”
Paltrow admitted the Valentino collection was “a high price point for us.” But nice stuff costs. “It’s a very expensive jacket,” said Ali Wentworth, the actress and comedian who’s married to George Stephanopoulos. The bomber tickets at $10,500. “I would be single if my husband saw that charge.”