BREAKING BREAD: Talk about a photo op. In the latest chapter of the warming relations between Bernard Arnault and François Pinault, the once-warring luxury titans and their spouses are cohosting a charity dinner. It’s slated for Jan. 25, the first day of couture week in Paris, with a classical concert starring violin virtuoso Anne-Sophie Mutter and pianist Lambert Orkis, followed by a seated dinner sponsored by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton. The event is under the patronage of former French President Jacques Chirac and his wife Bernadette, and in aid of Maison de Solenn, which helps troubled adolescents. The Arnaults, Pinaults and Chiracs are to mingle and share hosting duties at two tables of honor.
Meanwhile, LVMH had no comment Tuesday on widening speculation that former British Prime Minister Tony Blair would soon be appointed an adviser to the world’s largest luxury group.
TO THE TENTS: For a few seasons, Elie Tahari unveiled his collections with a cocktail party and runway presentation at his company’s headquarters on 42nd Street adjacent to Bryant Park. This coming fashion week, however, Tahari has decided it’s time for a change by moving across the street and into the park. On Feb. 16, Tahari will show his women’s and men’s fall collection at The Salon at Bryant Park venue, as part of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. “We decided to show in the tents this season because they will always be the heartbeat of American fashion and I wanted to celebrate their history in Bryant Park, as well as their future at Lincoln Center,” the designer said. Tahari is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., with a repeating runway presentation.
STELLA IN WONDERLAND: Hot on the tail of her children’s collection for Gap, Stella McCartney has joined with another all-American megabrand: Disney. WWD has learned the designer has created a limited edition costume jewelry necklace and bracelet in anticipation of the March release of Tim Burton’s 3-D film “Alice in Wonderland.” The jewelry, handmade in Italy, features Plexiglas and Swarovski crystal charms, including a rabbit, the Mad Hatter’s hat, a pearl, and spade, club, heart and diamond shapes. The color palette is black, sheer pink and brown; the chains are brass with a light gold finish. The necklace and bracelet, which cost $425 and $395, respectively, will be sold at Stella McCartney stores worldwide beginning next month. Disney plans to make an announcement today.
HAT IN THE RING: Guess co-founder Georges Marciano isn’t the only retail personality with his eyes on political office. Developer Rick Caruso said this week he’s actively contemplating a 2013 run for mayor of Los Angeles in the race to succeed Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who will have termed out of office. Caruso’s real estate holdings include The Grove, Americana at Brand, the long-delayed Miramar Hotel project in Santa Barbara, Calif., and a handful of other Southern California retail developments. Political analysts said the conservative mall developer fits the profile of a political novice who’s found success in business, and would need to throw big money behind the bid to increase his name recognition and cast himself as a liberal Republican to resonate with Los Angeles voters. But California has never had a dearth of rich and famous political candidates — think current Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, former Carmel Mayor Clint Eastwood and the late Congressman Sonny Bono. Both Caruso and Marciano are well-known Los Angeles multimillionaires, though that could be among their only political similarities. Marciano is seeking the governor’s seat in Sacramento as an independent. Caruso, a Republican and Catholic, has crossed party lines to back Democratic candidate Jerry Brown for governor. Caruso has said he will make a decision this year on any potential bid for the office.