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“It’s certainly not my grandmother’s Burberry,” giggled Kate Beckinsale as she twirled around in a low-slung taffeta ballskirt and tight T-shirt at Thursday night’s opening of the Burberry boutique in Beverly Hills.
The British house’s wares may be thoroughly updated, but the store’s opening night celebration, hosted by Vanity Fair, was strictly old-fashioned, right down to the explosion of plum pudding, Welsh guards and piles of plaid.
“I almost feel like I’m at home in mother England,” marveled Beckinsale, who also lent her name for the night in support of another great English tradition, the Shakespeare Festival L.A.
Burberry chief executive officer Rose Marie Bravo, notepad in hand, took design suggestions left and right from the Hollywood crowd, who begged for, among other things, sequin plaid pants. Reveling in her newfangled frock, co-host Rita Wilson told Bravo exactly what she wanted more of.
“These black leather buckles just make me want to rock out,” Wilson cried.
Deejay Rosanna Arquette provided earsplitting music as China Chow, Shiva Rose McDermott, Jamie Tisch and Darryl Hannah swayed alongside leather and plaid-clad mannequins. When Amber Valletta arrived fresh from the neighboring Tova salon with a new Kate Moss-esque cropped ‘do, she caused a sensation as she raced around the cavernous store, digging through the racks.
“I have to have this vintage trench,” she gasped, holding the 1969 raincoat up to her body. “I love the new stuff, but I think vintage is best.”
At the sound of breaking champagne glasses in the air, she turned quickly and then shrugged.
“Well, it’s never a party until something gets broken.”