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Fashion moves so quickly these days that the minute the summer couture ended in Paris, out came the latest looks at last week’s Sidaction AIDS benefit gala. There was Tilda Swinton in gold lamé pre-fall from Lanvin; Alek Wek in Dior pre-spring; Daria Werbowy in Balmain spring runway, and Devon Aoki in vintage Chanel couture (well, from summer 2007 anyway).

Adding more seasonal confusion, there was Alber Elbaz in a black ski toque — in spite of it being a mild January evening. “I haven’t had time to get a haircut,” he explained.

This story first appeared in the January 29, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Designers came from far afield for the auction — Giles Deacon from London and Dean and Dan Caten from Milan. The naughty twins, in matching tuxes, said they always make a beeline for the Paris restaurant Caviar Kaspia. “It’s very, very French and very, very quaint. Plus, the waiters are all cute,” said Dan. Actress Amira Casar said she was working on a new adaptation of King Lear. “I play the mean daughter and that’s why I look severe tonight,” she growled.

Meanwhile, Natalia Vodianova, who’s hosting an auction of contemporary art in Moscow soon for her children’s charity, said she wouldn’t be tempted to bid herself. “We have a [Salvador] Dali at home,” she said. “I’m more interested in Surrealist art.”

Eva Herzigova was showing no signs of her recent pregnancy. “Where did you put it?” joked jeweler Fawaz Gruosi as he greeted the statuesque stunner. Later, Gruosi triumphed in heated bidding for a racy photo of burlesque star Dita Von Teese. During the course of an evening long on speeches, and admonishments from host Pierre Bergé to pay attention, Catherine Deneuve ducked outside several times to puff on her trademark ultrathin cigarettes.

“This smoking ban is ridiculous,” she groused.

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