MAKING SCENTS: What would a perfume dreamed up by Marilyn Manson smell like? The world is about to find out. The Gothic rocker told WWD at the John Galliano show Saturday that he was planning to launch his own fragrance early next year. “I’m in the final stages with one of the major companies,” said Manson, noting he was “inspired by the Dali-Schiaparelli collaborations.” The flag bearer for manly makeup said he hoped his fragrance would be the precursor to a full cosmetics line. He added that he’s working on a movie about author Lewis Carroll.
Meanwhile, there was a generous lather of excitement backstage at Galliano, given the designer’s fashion-for-all-shapes-and-sizes theme. Pint-sized identical twins had their golden locks curled; musclemen’s tattoos were oiled, and a sexagenarian stood high upon a chair to better photograph all the goings-on. The quirky casting came mostly from two theater agencies. There was a handful of true-blue fashion models, too, who went about like business as usual. As Whitney Houston‘s “I Want to Dance With Somebody” pumped out of the speakers, some dancing and singing erupted. “These are very beautiful characters,” declared makeup artist Pat McGrath.
WHERE THERE’S SMOKE: Lauren Hutton chatted with some of the old Yves Saint Laurent gang, including a cigarette-brandishing Catherine Deneuve and Betty Catroux, before Stefano Pilati‘s Spanish-themed show for the legendary house on Sunday. The former model also remembered the first YSL Rive Gauche she bought in the Sixties. “It was an incredible green blouse,” she said. “[Saint Laurent] is the one who made me a fashion junkie.” Hutton arrived in Paris to launch an issue of Big magazine devoted to her. “There are 270 pictures of me in it,” she said. Kristin Scott Thomas brought her 17-year-old daughter, Hannah Oliviennes, to the show. “This is my first fashion show,” said Oliviennes, who is finishing up her last year of high school. “I still don’t know what I want to do,” she sighed. As for Scott Thomas, being an actress was clearly the only option. “I was lucky that way,” she related. “I knew what I wanted to do from the get-go.” Scott Thomas, who flew in from London where she has been busy rehearsing for her theater production of Luigi Pirandello’s “As You Desire Me,” is no stranger to the front row. “I like fashion but only in small doses,” she said.
BACK TO THE FUTURE: Galerie Kreo, the hip Paris design gallery where the likes of Karl Lagerfeld and Azzedine Alaïa scoop up cutting-edge furniture and lighting, is teaming up with Christian Lacroix for his new store concept. The first, slated to bow next spring in Las Vegas, will be a mix of “past, present and future,” according to Nicolas Tapiol, a director at Lacroix, now owned by the Florida-based Falic Group. Tapiol said to expect an eclectic mix of baroque with extremely contemporary pieces. Kreo founder Didier Krzentowski represents Martin Szekely, Marc Newson, the Bourroulec brothers and others.
SWING SHIFT: Biba, the cult brand that sent British teenagers shopping mad in the Swinging Sixties, is coming back. A retro accessories collection — finished with hand-painted and laser-cut Art Nouveau effects — will hit select stores next spring. Meanwhile, a Biba ready-to-wear collection, designed by Bella Freud, will be unveiled during the next London Fashion Week. “We chose Freud because she has a unique English vision that has a sense of humor to it — it’s always a bit cheeky,” said Michael Pearce, owner of the Biba trademark. With a Biba boutique planned for 2007, the brand is also on the hunt for a distributor for its new perfume, developed by Creative Perfumers. The scent carries, according to Pearce, an Eastern patchouli-meets-Shanghai sensibility. Select stores such as Paris’ Colette, Liberty’s in London and Linda Dresner in New York have already snapped up the shoes and bags, whose prices start at $150 wholesale. “Biba will be the next big thing for bags,” predicted Pearce, who plans to channel delicate elements like chainmail and tapestry in upcoming designs. “Biba ain’t bling, it’s romantic,” he said.
QUIET RIOT: Suzy Menkes is accustomed to the grueling Paris show schedule, but the ear-splitting, bone-shuddering music at Alexander McQueen Friday night proved to be too much. The International Herald Tribune scribe dashed out of the show with her hands over her ears and was later seen slumped outside on the stairs, attended to by Vogue’s Anna Wintour and André Leon Talley, along with KCD’s Ed Filipowski. Menkes was in fine form on Saturday morning, relating that she inherited a high sensitivity to loud music that can make her faint and nauseous. “If L’Wren Scott says the music is loud — it’s loud,” Menkes quipped, referring to the celebrity stylist and Mick Jagger‘s girlfriend.
THINK PINK: Emanuel Ungaro is in flux. Although the house remains mum on the Ferragamo family’s efforts to sell the French fashion company, Asim Abdullah has been widely cited in the Italian press as the most likely buyer. Abdullah is an outsider to the fashion business who built his fortune in Silicon Valley. Ungaro chief executive Paolo De Spirt declined all comment over the weekend. The future of Ungaro designer Vincent Darre also hangs in the balance. Although he received more encouraging reviews for his second collection, the potential new owner is said to have approached other designers, including Yvan Mispelaere, the former Louis Feraud designer who is now a member of Phoebe Philo‘s team at Chloé.
PRINCESS TIDE: Celebrity designers are the norm these days, but royals are throwing their crown into the fray, too. At least in Thailand, where the Princess Sirivannavarinariratana has founded a brand called Sirivannvari. OK, that might not trip off the tongue (try it three times fast), but the princess, who attended the Kenzo and Hermès shows over the weekend, is giving it a serious go. “Thai fashion is getting pretty energetic,” she said, pointing to her own sequin-embroidered jeans. “My logo is a peacock.”
THE BELLE TOILS: Having just completed the filming of “A Good Year” with Russell Crowe, French actress Marion Cotillard is set to play a French musical legend in “La Vie en Rose.” “I’m about to get cracking on Edith Piaf,” she said at the Chanel show on Friday. “But I won’t be doing any singing. Piaf is in a league of her own.” Meanwhile, Virginie Ledoyen took a rosy approach of her own: dyeing her hair red for her role in the Spanish film “The Back Woods.” “I really like it,” said the actress of her new color. “But once a brunette, always a brunette.” Up-and-coming American actress Camilla Belle, who just wrapped the remake of “When a Stranger Calls,” scheduled to hit theaters in February, decided she deserved a trip to Europe. Traveling with her mother, Cristina, Belle said she has been “resting and pampering myself.” She and her mom were off to London next, and then Scotland.
Down the front row, Chanel face Anna Mouglalis brought her younger sister, Melina, a law student, who had never been to a fashion show. The beguiling brunette actress said she’s got a number of projects in the works, not the least of which is an album, for which she is preparing material. Meanwhile, French workers still toiling on the cupola of the Grand Palais, had top-row seats, lying on the glass to watch the show from 11 stories up.
CHILD’S PLAY: It was a family affair — Jagger style — as Jade and her two daughters squeezed into the front row of Lanvin on Sunday. “She’s incredible at customizing things,” Assisi Jagger said about her younger sister, Amber, who has ambitions to be a fashion designer.
HITTING THE BOOKS: Sharon Stone turned up last Thursday night at the opening of Assouline’s first freestanding store, but was she looking to curl up with a good book — or someone tall, dark and handsome? “You must know every great guy in the city,” she said, grilling Martine Assouline, wife of publisher Prosper. “I’m very jealous you’re married to such a fabulous man.” Stone signed copies of her new Assouline title, “Something to Hold” – a compilation of photos of angels from graveyards taken by Mimi Craven, with text by Stone. “It’s for anyone who has lost someone they loved,” the actress explained. “I’ve left places for you to write what you want to.” Proceeds go to AmFAR’s campaign against AIDS, of which Stone has been chair since 1995. Her message to fans: “Let’s use condoms.”
MODEL VISION: There is life after modeling. Just ask Puerto Rican beauty Astrid Munoz, who kick-started a career in fashion photography. Having stood before the camera plenty in her day, Munoz — who walked in her friend Giambattista Valli‘s show Friday — said she has a unique approach. “I’m very respectful and try to make the girls look pretty,” she said. “I know that’s what they want.” Now based in Paris, Munoz said she’s also worked for Stiletto magazine and is talking with Diane von Furstenberg about a possible collaboration.
TEE TIME: Seeing well-known models anywhere but the runway has been a theme of the Paris week, with Natalia Vodianova, Audrey Marnay and others occupying front-row seats. Karolina Kurkova was spotted Saturday at hip boutique Colette signing autographs and selling limited-edition T-shirts she created for her new non-profit foundation, “The Beautiful Life,” in aid of children’s charities. “The foundation is so new, we haven’t picked [the charities] yet,” said Kurkova, who was in town for only two days since she is taking a break from the Paris runway this season. Jacquetta Wheeler lined up say hello, as did Vodianova.
DANGER ZONE: Fashion shows can be a dangerous place — even if you’re seated in the back row. At Tsumori Chisato last Thursday, a security guard in the mezzanine accidentally knocked over a loose section of ornate metal railing. Although no one was seriously injured, four people were rushed to the emergency room to be checked for concussions, while another was administered first aid on the scene.
IN THE SADDLE: “I’m going into the studio for a new album next week,” declared actress-cum-chanteuse Jane Birkin at the Hermès show on Saturday. Birkin, who is the namesake for the house’s famous bag, said she’d be singing tunes penned by the likes of Coldplay and Beth Gibbons. Meanwhile, Birkin has also written a film about “a mother with three daughters, kind of like me,” which she will direct and which will star Geraldine Chaplin. Also attracting interest in the front row were Pierre-Alexis Dumas and Pascale Mussard, the son and niece of Hermès chairman Jean-Louis Dumas. The cousins were recently named joint artistic directors of the luxury firm in preparation for Dumas’ retirement in January.
DANCE TRACK: Dita Von Teese made a late appearance at the Stella McCartney party last Thursday night at Regine’s. The burlesque performer kept her clothes on, but she did bust a few moves on the dance floor with McCartney. Later, the designer gave the impression that a flair for photography runs in the family. She snapped photos like her pro sister Mary — of guests and even herself with PPR boss François-Henri Pinault. Filmmaker Wes Anderson also made an appearance. He’s been busy hunting for locations for his new movie in Paris, among other things. “I had [Vuitton] trunks made for a movie I’m filming in India,” Anderson said.
DADA COOL: Yves Saint Laurent designer Stefano Pilati was not exactly in the mood for a dinner party last Thursday night. “I had to leave a fitting,” he fretted, eager to get back to the studio to ready his collection for the runway on Sunday. But he was a charming host nonetheless to help fete the opening of the Dada exhibition at the Pompidou, sponsored by PPR and YSL. Pilati strolled with Catherine Deneuve and ogled sculptures by Sophie Taeuber-Arp. “This is my third time in this room,” he confessed. “Maybe it’s because it’s all the women artists.” Christian Louboutin broke out the perfect sweater vest for the event, an old Bella Freud with a trompe l’oeil undone necktie on the front. “I find it’s very Dada,” he pronounced. Meanwhile, his friend Diane von Furstenberg was buying an exhibition guide at the gift stand. “Am I the only one who went shopping?” she asked, toting her purchases to an endless dinner table that seated 250. Scattered amongst retail heavyweights and art-world bigwigs swilling a fine 1997 Chateau Latour were PPR boss François-Henri Pinault, Linda Evangelista, Amira Casar, Betty Catroux and YSL chief executive Valerie Hermann.
OH, BABY: “She’s already a style icon,” said London art dealer Max Wigram at the Chloé show on Saturday. Wigram wasn’t referring to his wife Phoebe Philo, but to their bouncing baby fashionista, 10-month-old Maya. The infant has already inspired her father. “I copied her hairstyle,” Wigram said, showing off newly blonde locks cropped to match his daughter’s. Elsewhere, actress Lou Doillon was fashionably late for her new assignment, starring in a series about the music scene for French cable channel Paris Premiere. “I’m working on a show where I travel from capital to capital,” said the globetrotter.