FAVORITE BAG: Like many teenage girls, Lana Condor wore Longchamp’s Le Pliage bag in high school — “down to destruction,” she said with a laugh.
“I was so devoted to that bag,” she continued. “I wore it forever and ever and ever. To the point where the lining on the inside was like, ‘Give it up!’”
It was also her riding bag.
“I had a horse named Karrot, but with a K for karat gold — because, fashion,” she giggled. She started horseback riding at 6. “I also had a horse named Joe,” she later revealed. “But Joe was the worst. Joe was a bully. We don’t talk about Joe.”
The 25-year-old actress, who rose to fame as Lara Jean Covey in the Netflix rom-com film series “To All the Boys” — after making her debut in “X-Men: Apocalypse” — was the night’s special guest at a dinner hosted by the French house in Los Angeles on Thursday night. “Rendez-Vous Au Sommet” was the theme, inspired by the snowy Alps.
The evening was held to celebrate Longchamp’s newest bag: Box-Trot. A boxy shape coming in various shades and two sizes, it features a medallion in gold-tone metal on the folding snap — the signature horse and rider logo.
“I exercised some Lana go-against-your-impulse,” she said about picking out the style, choosing the mini in green. “I’m a big bag girl forever. I’m someone who wants to know I have all my things in the bag, period. And I don’t have mini bags mainly because I’m like, ‘Well I can’t fit my books in there. I can’t fit my iPad. I can’t fit my massive charger.’ But I said, ‘Lana this mini is so cute.’ And alarmingly, you can fit so much in it. I have a camera — “
“Guys, would you like a madeleine?” a waiter interrupted, presenting his silver platter. The butter cakes, too, were mini.
“No, I’m OK, thank you,” Condor responded, before turning back. “That looks like a pizza pocket,” she said. “If it was a pizza pocket, I would take it.”
She went on, holding the purse, “If you’re looking for a mini bag, but you’re also a big bag girl, this is it. I am shocked. I have a camera, my car holder, a charger, hand sanitizer, my keys. And I think I could put my phone in if I wanted. So, it’s kind of a perfect size if you’re trying to be cute and mini but also practical.”
Condor wore Longchamp head to toe, including a black leather jacket with a white sweater, trousers and boots.
“This jacket, my fiancé tried on as well, so we’re going to be sharing it,” she said of actor Anthony De La Torre. Engaged this year, the two live in Seattle, Washington. “It’s great, but I’m like, it’s mine.”
She gave a cheeky smile before playfully shouting, “Mine!”
Asked about her recent work, she said she wrapped “Valiant One” with Chase Stokes, directed by Steve Barnett. The film is set in North Korea. “It’s no ‘To All the Boys,’ let me tell you. It’s no rom-com.”
The experience was physically demanding, she said. “It was probably the most empowering thing I’ve ever done.”
She’s been choosing projects “that spark joy,” she added. “And same with brands. I’m at this point in my life where I only want to work with people who share the same values as I do and make me feel happy. It’s one of the reasons I’m here tonight. I feel very honored.”
Held in a private residence in the Hollywood Hills, the dinner — prepared by Parisian chef Yann Nury — brought out a slew of young women, actresses Alyah Chanelle Scott, Larsen Thompson, Hannah Zeile and content creators Amanda Steele, Anna Sitar, Emma Brooks, Ellie Zeiler. All accessorized with the Box-Trot.
“Most of our relationships are very organic,” Paul Lorraine, chief executive officer and president of Longchamp North America, said. He cohosted the event with the brand’s managing director Olivier Miller-Cassegrain, great-grandson of Longchamp founder Jean Cassegrain. (It was in 1948 that the entrepreneur launched the company, named after the Paris racecourse, as producer of tobacco pipe coverings before creating leather goods.)
“We don’t really go out chasing or targeting people,” Lorraine said. “It’s the magic of Longchamp. They’ve been doing it for so long. And the relationships, the partnerships are longstanding. You can see tonight, it’s genuine appreciation.…Our challenge on a media perspective is that we’ve been very humble. We don’t shout about the brand, because it’s not our nature. We let our products speak for itself.”
The company is looking to expand in the region, he said: “We’ve got a big business on the East Coast, and we want more on the West Coast. It’s always been an area that we’ve had great support, great engagement, and we just want to do more here.”
What’s in the works for next year?
“We’re growing more of our concession businesses,” Lorraine said. “That’s going to be a big role for us. Our product assortment is expanding on the families, editing our selection down but adding more color. We had a fantastic `22. We had a really good `21. `23, I’m mentally in Q3 already. It’s looking exciting for us. We’ve got great momentum.” — RYMA CHIKHOUNE
HOLIDAY SPIRIT: This holiday season, Bottega Veneta is sharing its platform with 14 small-scale artisanal makers around the world, including a Vermont woodworker, a Brooklyn ceramicist and a Shanghai pasta-maker, all in the name of promoting Italian craftsmanship.
The Italian word “bottega” translates in English to workshop, and as one of the more visible bottegas, the global luxury brand decided to launch the campaign to spotlight smaller makers last year. The first iteration featured bottegas exclusively from Italy, while this year’s expanded further afield.
On the Bottega Veneta website, in its advertising and store windows, including at Bergdorf Goodman in New York, the campaign features a Rockledge Farm Woodworks’ ice cream scoop, made at the family- owned farm in Reading, Vermont, that’s been making kitchen tools and utensils, furniture and custom pieces since the 1930s.
Also featured are playful and colorful ceramic bowls by Franca NYC, a manufacturer based in Brooklyn, New York, and founded by Jasmin de la Guardia and Sierra Yip-Bannicq, who strive to bring “lingua franca” or common language to each of their pieces.
Other items include a marbled book by book binder Ateliergk Firenze in Florence and a Je&Jo Pasta kit from the Shanghai pasta-maker run by the second generation Yu family, whose parents own the Casa Mia Italian restaurant in the city.
The full selection of giftable items can be seen and linked to on the Bottega Veneta website. — BOOTH MOORE
KANE COLLABORATES: Singer Kane Brown grew up in the rural South wearing Rue21 clothes and has continued to wear the brand on his rise to stardom.
Now the popular genre-bending singer has strengthened his connection with Rue21 by collaborating on a limited-edition collection.
“I came up not really having any money to spend on clothes,” Brown said. “But I had enough that I could afford Rue21, and their clothes were cool.”
The collection, which started selling at Rue21 stores and on rue21.com this week, features a variety of items designed by Brown including screen T-shirts, sweatshirts, joggers, trucker hats, in sizes small through XXL. Available for men and women, prices range from $16.99 to $41.99.
“Kane Brown grew up wearing Rue21, so it has been extremely exciting for our team to work with him on this very personal and exclusive Rue21 collection,” said Bill Brand, chief executive officer of the affordable, youth-oriented fashion retailer. “From a voice as our customer to a leading voice as a collaborator and partner, Kane’s personality and style align perfectly with that of our audience.”
As part of the launch, customers can enter a contest to get the chance to meet Brown and shop the collection at the Opry Mills Mall in Nashville on Jan. 6. To enter, participants must follow the brand on Instagram, post a video or photo on their public feed explaining why they love Brown and Rue21, as well as why they should be the winner. Participants should use the hashtag #rue21xKaneBrown in the caption and tag @rue21 in the post.
“Rue21 x Kane Brown is the answer for the savvy Gen Z person who wants to make a fashion-forward statement,” said Michael Cingolani, Rue21’s chief merchandising officer. “Kane is an award-winning artist with a vast and diverse fan base, so this line is going to be in demand, and we expect it to sell out quickly.”
The singer-songwriter best known for hits like “Heaven,” “Be Like That,” “Grand” and “Like I Love Country Music.” He’s won five American Music Awards, two CMT Music Awards and one ACM Award. — DAVID MOIN
PARTY NIGHT: Retrofete, a New York-based ready-to-wear label, threw a party Thursday night to celebrate its New York City pop-up at 99 Spring Street. Among the 150 guests were Christine Quinn, Camille Kostek, Shea Marie, and Sophia Culpo.
“An in-person shopping experience was a natural next step for the brand,” said Ohad Seroya, creative director and cofounder of Retrofete. “I’ve been eager to have a space that is truly ours — where we can connect with our shoppers face-to-face. Years in the making — we figured what better way to celebrate this major milestone than to throw a party Retrofete style. My vision for this pop-up was to transport the Retrofete state-of-mind into reality. It is something I am honored to share with New York — the city that made me.”
Seroya and Aviad Klin cofounded Retrofete in 2018 and the brand has been worn by such celebrities as Selena Gomez, Gwyneth Paltrow, Taylor Swift, Michelle Obama, Paris Hilton and Jennifer Lopez.
A goal for the brand, which sells at retailers such as Fwrd, Revolve, Intermix, Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus, is to open a permanent retail location in downtown New York in 2023.
Neon-lit motifs decorated the pop-up’s walls, incorporating the brand’s signature logo throughout the store. Large hanging crystal installations created a shimmering backdrop for Retrofete’s sequin dresses. The store is a mix of gowns for galas and more casual styles featuring luxe Italian denim silhouettes. Collections featured in the pop-up are fall, holiday, bridal and accessories, as well as select styles from the new Retrofete x May Mashiah collection. Mashiah, as reported, is an Israeli couture designer who collaborated with Retrofete on a five-piece capsule of dresses that launched in October on retrofete.com followed by Frwd.com in November. — LISA LOCKWOOD