While several hundred Lady Gaga fans watched in the chill on East 60th Street as the pop star cut the ribbon to Gaga’s Workshop at Barneys New York on Monday night, a crush of VIPs were granted early shopping privileges at a combination cocktail party/shopping event.
“I’m anxious to see first of all if anything’s wearable,” said Jesse Tyler Ferguson, who was enjoying a pre-workshop drink. “I’m cautious of going in and seeing like a rack of meat panties or something.”
Prabal Gurung was among the first to comb the workshop for gifts — “for my 10-year-old nephew and five-year-old niece,” he said. “They are huge Gaga fans.”
Alexander Wang, basket in hand, also had Christmas gifts for his niece and nephew in mind, though that didn’t really influence his selection. “I don’t really think age appropriate, I just buy what I like,” the designer said.
Among the crowd moving from the party to the workshop and back were Neil Patrick Harris, Alan Cumming, Monique Péan, Pamela Love, Carolyn Murphy, Yvonne Force Villareal, Giovanna Battaglia, Matthew Settle and a contingent of heavily made-up drag performers.
A few revelers likened the experience to FAO Schwartz on acid. Most were giddy at the sight of candy lipsticks, bow lollipops and flame press-on nails.
“Are those Lady Gaga Eleni’s cookies?” Blake Lively asked. “Everything is so unexpected and beyond my imagination.”
Like many others, Lively was hoping to meet Gaga for the first time, but the actress wasn’t quite sure what she would say to her if the moment came. “She is like a piece of art come alive,” Lively said. “So it would be strange to be, like, having a conversation with a painting.”