BELLES OF THE BALL: Is Presidential niece Lauren Bush now a designer? She plans to accompany Tommy Hilfiger to the CFDA Awards tonight, but she won’t be wearing one of his designs. Bush, who appears exclusively in Hilfiger’s ad campaigns, came up with her own dress, sketched it herself and asked Hilfiger to sew it up for her. The pale green and blue toga features flowy layers of silk chiffon that will wrap tightly around her torso, down to her hips and cascade into a solid skirt with one long slit for the appropriate leg action. Meanwhile, Penelope Cruz will accompany Ralph Lauren, and Nicole Kidman is coming with Karl Lagerfeld. However, the CFDA would like to clarify that Josh Hartnett, who still isn’t coming, was never asked to present the Men’s Designer of the Year award.

This story first appeared in the June 3, 2002 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

PARTY PEOPLE: The awards ceremony might be a lot smaller, but the celebration is lasting much longer. Honorees at this year’s CFDA Awards are throwing four days of events to acknowledge their achievements, and also to give some of their friends a chance to get in on the party action, since they can’t get into the big event tonight.

The festivities were expected to start Sunday night with a kickoff cocktail party and dinner for Bloomingdale’s fashion director Kal Ruttenstein at 60 Thompson. Then, after tonight’s awards, winners Karl Lagerfeld, Hedi Slimane and Stephen Gan are throwing a more intimate, late-night party on Madison Street in Chinatown billed as “Cafe Society,” where the trio are expected to perform bartender duties and Linda Evangelista and Amber Valetta will be DJs. Tips will go to charity. On Tuesday, Lagerfeld will be feted with a luncheon by Interview editor in chief Ingrid Sischy and a dinner by Oscar and Annette de la Renta.

For those still standing on Wednesday, Cornelia Guest will wrap things up with a party for her mother, Fashion Icon Award winner C.Z. Guest.

WEIGHT-LISTED: Those eager to get that “Lagerfeld-lite” look will have to be patient. Karl Lagerfeld, who spectacularly shed more than 90 pounds in 11 months, said he won’t release his eagerly awaited diet book “3D” until fall. The designer had expected the 250-page soft-cover tome to come out this spring in French, English and other languages, but the translations need additional tweaking. Besides, Lagerfeld relishes the fact that he will have maintained his asparagus-thin silhouette for a year by autumn, giving his rigorous regime more credibility. “Often when people write diet books,” he said, “by the time it comes out, they’re fat again.”

STYLE DOWNLOAD: Photographer Nick Knight and designer Yohji Yamamoto are putting a new stitch in the Internet. Yamamoto created a garment pattern that, starting June 5, can be downloaded free from Knight’s multimedia site Yamamoto also offers instructions on how to assemble the long-sleeved top adapted from his diffusion line, Y’s Yohji Yamamoto. “The fabric should be some kind of wool,” he councils. Knight photographed a finished garment to suggest how it could be assembled. He plans to invite participants to e-mail photos of their creations and post them on the site.

NEW IN THE SADDLE AT POLO: Polo wants to dress celebrities and other high-profile clients on the East Coast, so it has tapped Edward O’Sullivan as director of public relations and client services. He was director of client services for Yves Saint Laurent, where he has clothed the likes of Sting, Bono, Jennifer Lopez, Nicole Kidman and Christy Turlington (who made a big splash wearing YSL to the Costume Institute gala last year).

Crystal Moffett-Lourd continues as a consultant to Polo in Los Angeles.

O’Sullivan, based in New York, reports to Michel Botbol, vice president and creative director of global fashion communications, and Jim Hardy, senior vice president of flagships.

HUSSEIN MAN: Hussein Chalayan will unveil his first men’s wear collection next month in Paris — and boy does it sound complicated. The 35-piece collection is called “Absence and Presence” and will include formal, casual and sportswear. According to a statement from the company, the collection will apply Chalayan’s Airmail concept. “Chalayan proposes that clothing carry the remnants of packaging and the action of its removal.” The collection will be produced by the Italian manufacturer Gibo, and be priced around $280 to $400 for a suit. A source close to Chalayan, however, insists that the collection is not as strange as it sounds. “At the end of the day he’s selling clothes. This collection is 100 percent Chalayan — but far simpler than his women’s collection.”

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