TRADING IN THEIR SNEAKERS: Fresh from the track in Athens, U.S. Olympians Anthony Famiglietti and Derrick Peterson, both members of the U.S. track and field team, are set to be on the sidelines in Bryant Park for Kenneth Cole’s show today. The show should be a well-deserved rest for the athletes if they can manage some time away from the photographers’ flashbulbs. In Athens, Famiglietti placed eighth in the opening round of the steeplechase event, while Peterson came up with fourth in the opening round of the men’s 800-meter competition.

Other expected celebrity guests thus far include Tara Reid, Carmen Electra and Rufus Wainwright at Custo Barcelona on Friday; Vanessa Carlton at Alice Roi on Friday and Mischa Barton, Heidi Klum, Gretchen Mol, Eva Mendes plus Venus and Serena Williams at Luca Luca on Sunday.

GET ‘EM WHILE THEY’RE YOUNG: People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is taking its case to fashion designers in training. A spokesman for the antifur group said Tuesday that PETA plans to play nice with the designer crowd throughout the duration of Olympus Fashion Week, instead focusing its activities on the next generation by sponsoring a senior class project at Parsons School of Design, beginning with a 1:30 p.m. lecture to the new senior class by PETA vice president Dan Mathews.

Timothy M. Gunn, chairman of the fashion department at Parsons, confirmed Mathews will address the class, even though another senior project is sponsored by Saga Furs, a Scandinavian company that provides pelts to major designers around the world. He and Mathews were introduced by Peter Arnold, executive director of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, Gunn said, adding that at first he was nervous about allowing PETA on campus.

“I did hide the fox furs in my office,” Gunn said. “But I found Dan to be open to the fact that we work with Saga and Italian leather manufacturers. I felt it was important to give students both sides of the story and let them be aware of both sides of the issue.”

This story first appeared in the September 8, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Throughout the school year, students will design clothing using, in the words of the PETA spokesman, “faux fur, mock croc and fake snake.” While PETA did not ask for those looks to be included alongside the Saga pieces in the students’ important graduation show, Gunn said he would not be opposed to the idea, adding, “As far as i’m concerned it should be on the runway.”

SPARKLE SHOW: Designers aren’t the only ones getting ready for this week’s shows. With luxury all the rage, diamond companies are lining up, too, and carting their wares to the tents. Lockes Diamantaires is bejeweling models in more than 1,000 carats of diamonds at Halston and Tracy Reese today. The company is also gearing up for the opening of its first boutique in New York’s Time Warner Center. The 650-square-foot space opens at the end of this month and its design will follow the same grand aesthetic as its new neighbors, which are known as much for their interiors as their over-the-top meals — Thomas Keller’s restaurant Per Se, Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s V Steakhouse, and Masa Takayama’s Masa. At Lockes Diamantaires, walls will be dusted with diamonds and gold, and silver-leaf skylights will poke out of quilted ceilings. Privacy-seeking clients will be able to hole up in salon rooms to view the jewelry, as well as rough and polished loose diamonds, in peace.