HATS OFF TO YOKO: Tracey Ross’ eponymous West Hollywood shop gets its fill of the notorious and legendary. After all, Courtney Love was in Thursday morning to pick up a pair of Ross’ motorcycle boots and a white Chloé dress she’ll wear at her Wiltern concert in L.A. Saturday night. But a drop in later that day by Yoko Ono had the cool and collected staff giddy. Although her son, Sean, is a regular, it took something very rare to get Ono inside: A vintage poster printed “War is Over…If you want it. Love and Peace John & Yoko” that Ross had just placed in the window. Ono spent more than an hour there, engaged in one of her well-known shopping sprees. She scooped up Carlos Souza’s black diamond Maltese cross ring, Loree Rodkin’s diamond “F**k You” ring, a DSquared jacket, and Ross’ motorcycle boots, among many, many other things. She even threw on her tab a Eugenia Kim hat that starlet Brittany Murphy wanted. Ono only wears black, so when Murphy willingly offered it and took the brown instead, Ono — who also passed out peace pins to all on hand — showed her appreciation in kind.
SIR PAUL OUT WEST: Wednesday’s red glow from the full lunar eclipse provided the perfect backdrop for Sir Paul Smith, in Los Angeles for a Neiman Marcus-hosted cocktail party and fashion show at the Chateau Marmont in Hollywood. And the London designer says a store here is definitely in the stars. “We’re looking to open here in a year’s time,” said Smith, in his signature slim dark suit and tousled hair. “We’re looking at Melrose because we like the area.” For Smith, it would be the realization of a long-held dream to open a store in America — he’s been looking in New York for the last several years, with no success. The problem is, Smith likes to own his real estate (as he does in London and Milan), not rent it. Clever knight.
PARTY POLITICS: When New York’s Parsons School of Design unveiled its Voting Booth Project on Wednesday night, for which a group of artists and designers customized polling machines recovered from a Florida scrap heap by hotelier Andre Balazs, there was one design that had some guests a little nervous — a silver briefcase in the back of the room, emitting a loud ticking noise.
“I wanted people to pay attention,” said its creator, Yeohlee Teng, who for some reason feels that people might not have heard much about a certain election coming up next week. “If everybody was paying attention, they might see what’s going on. The coverage on television has been very selective, no matter what channel you’re watching, and I watch a lot of them — CNN, NY1 and Fox.”
The booths were auctioned later that evening to benefit Parsons and Declare Yourself, where the big hit of the evening wasn’t a ticking briefcase, but rather a flammable voting booth made of bits of wood splints and rice paper by David Rockwell’s Rockwell Group, called “Playing with Fire.” It sold for $6,000 to Constitutional collector Norman Lear.