Byline: Aileen Mehle
Forget about hoof-and-mouth for a second, s’il vous plait. Much of the English countryside is a sea of golden daffodils, and Camilla Parker Bowles is planning her spring wardrobe.
It has been rather fascinating for Camilla-watchers to see her develop her own look, this woman who has never even considered being a wannabe, especially a wannabe Diana, no matter what you hear or read. Everyone knows clothes are not her primary interest, but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do, especially when she’s under a microscope. So last year she tried out Versace, but that didn’t fly. Didn’t fly? It never even got off the ground.
Since she’s worn Valentino to much success, but now it’s felt (by top-drawer feelers) that she should turn to England for inspiration. Accordingly, she has aligned herself with London designer Camilla Ridley, a mere 31, who was hardly out of school during Diana’s heyday. Already there is a gorgeous cape in Camilla PB’s closet and she has been back to Camilla R’s store several times to pick things for the upcoming season. Camilla R also makes frocks for Miranda Richardson and Shirley Bassey, who know a fine seam when they see one.
Evelyn and Leonard Lauder and Elizabeth Hurley, who is a little hard to miss in the Estee Lauder ads, are among the co-chairs of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation Spring Gala at Cipriani on Wednesday. Sir Elton John will provide the entertainment and most of the sequins. Among the expected guests who have been asked to dress “in black tie with a touch of red” are Candice Bergen and Marshall Rose, Marie-Josee and Henry Kravis, Bette Midler and Carly Simon, a potpourri right there. And among the underwriters are Estee Lauder, Michael Bloomberg and the Hearsts.
The evening’s theme is “The Go-Go Lounge” and, yes, there will be go-go dancers — but not, for Pete’s sake, the same ones we remember from yesteryear when go-goism was in flower. If all this sounds too good to miss, tough. The evening is already sold out and there is $2.5 million in the kip. The guests are almost guaranteed to look lovely because Bentley Meeker, the lighting expert, will be seeing to that. Bentley’s the one who illuminated the spectacular weddings of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas, and Joan Rivers’s daughter, Melissa. And who’s to say they didn’t look lovely?
Maybe you’ve already heard that Dan Snyder, the 36-year-old owner of the Washington Redskins, recently bought the 12-acre estate overlooking the Potomac River in Montgomery County, Md., that once belonged to the late King Hussein of Jordan and his American-born wife, Queen Noor. Dan paid over $10 million for the place, which measures 34,000 square feet and counting. Not that the spread isn’t already good enough for a king and a queen, you understand, but Dan and his beautiful wife, Tanya, keen to put their own mark on the property, have called in interior designer Geoffrey Bradfield to help cozy it up.
Some cozy. Bradfield has cut his teeth on Fortune 500 clients and their megamansions. He has just about finished doing over the awesome house in Old Westbury, Long Island, that once belonged to the late Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney and is now a private residence, and has designed a number of superior Palm Beach residences. So it’s a good thing he’s primed for what’s coming, because here are the Snyders’ must-have plans: a state-of-the-art screening room; a trophy room for all those prizes Dan just knows the Redskins are going to win; a series of glass-fronted garages for the football mogul’s car collection; a separate house for a spa, a pool and an exercise area, and of course, but of course, the de rigueur pad for helicopters to touchdown — I mean, touch down. Touchdown is Dan Snyder’s favorite word.
Just to clear up a couple of things in Wednesday’s report on the Metropolitan Museum’s mega-Jackie Kennedy exhibition: Emilia Fanjul’s beautiful black dress with a flirty skirt and a black, white and gold beaded midriff was designed by Carolina Herrera and not Oscar de la Renta, as you read here. Oh, and the Clintons never actually stayed in the house of Annette and Oscar de la Renta in Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. They did stay at a place they rented three houses away, but they were invited to the de la Rentas for dinner one night. They came. And, oh, Hillary sat at the museum, not with the de la Rentas, but with Anna Wintour, one of the chairs, where is just exactly where she wanted to be.
Caroline Kennedy, still receiving congratulations for her fine speech at the museum gala honoring her mother, is the gala co-chair, along with Blaine Trump, of American Ballet Theatre’s Opening Night Spring Gala on Monday. President and Mrs. George W. Bush are the honorary chairs of the evening but won’t be there in person. Among the friends of ABT who will be there in the flesh are co-chairs Susan Fales-Hill, Tory Burch, Sloan Lindemann Barnett and Peter Bacanovic. And, trumpets and flourishes, the non pareil Brooke Astor, who is bringing her own escort because, to hear her tell it, she knows how to pick ’em.