MEMO PAD

RALPH LAUREN PAINTS: Who knew Ralph Lauren could paint, too? Lauren joined other Polo employees and students from the East Harlem School at Exodus House Thursday to paint a mural at the school.
Led by Polo Ralph Lauren’s Volunteer Program, the project is part of an ongoing commitment the corporation has made to the students of the East Harlem School. In June, Lauren led a group of sixth-graders in discussions on the subject of “The American Dream,” and in July, Polo volunteers painted the school and redesigned the gardens in preparation for the spring graduation ceremonies.
“It was amazing. Ralph didn’t want to leave. He’s still up there,” said a Polo spokeswoman late Thursday. “He was painting the rainbow.”
The mural — half a city block long — was designed by Lucia Yee-Lipitz, illustrator and artist for Ralph Lauren Home. It depicts the central themes of hope, love and personal responsibility. Students chose quotes from Maya Angelou, William Shakespeare and Martin Luther King Jr.
“Many of us at Polo have developed relationships with the students and staff of the East Harlem School — through projects such as this, by mentoring students and by participating in field trips to the Whitney Museum. It’s been a mutually rewarding partnership,” said Lauren in a statement.

GUCCI MOVES: Fraser Conlon will soon be named the new director of public relations for Gucci America, market sources said. He is expected to succeed Lisa Schiek, who moved to London as worldwide director of communications of Gucci Group. Previously, Conlon was senior director of public relations for women’s and men’s Collection at Donna Karan International.

PICTURE PERFECT: A new underground fashion magazine has bubbled up from Paris’s percolating fashion scene. Called Amaan, it is the brainchild of photographer Paul Steinitz and his sister, Sarah Steinitz, who will be co-editors of the quarterly. The 128-page debut issue, which hit newsstands this week, carries no advertising, but a page costs about $6,600 with an initial print run of 2,000. Sarah Steinitz said the idea is to feature “beautiful pictures of interesting people wearing interesting clothes.” Personalities in the issue, all photographed by Paul Steinitz, include author Jay MacInerny, designers Mary McFadden and Kenneth Jay Lane and retailer Patricia Fields. Upcoming issues, which will feature guest photographers, will cost about $16 at fashion boutiques and select newsstands in Paris and New York.

BIG FASHION MONTH: September was a hot month for fashion advertising. Apparel and accessories ad revenues leaped 19.5 percent to $189.4 million, according to the Publishers Information Bureau, making it the biggest ad revenue generator of the 13 PIB-tracked categories. Toiletries and cosmetics ad revenues gained 15.3 percent to $133.3 million, said PIB.From January through September, apparel and accessories ad revenues were up 13 percent to $873.4 million, while toiletries and cosmetics ad revenues gained 10.1 percent to $891.5 million.

ON THE RISE: Effective with next February’s issue, W will increase its circulation rate base to 425,000 from 400,000.
Marie Claire will increase its rate base to 825,000 from 775,000, also effective with the February book.
And O, the Oprah Magazine will boost its rate base to 1.3 million, up from 900,000, effective with January edition.

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