RICHIE’S MANY HATS: Nicole Richie, previewing her new Winter Kate apparel line at the Michigan Avenue Nordstrom in Chicago, said she wants to create a lifestyle brand with a retail component. “I love being challenged,” said Richie, who has a daughter, Harlow, two, and a son, Sparrow, turning one in September. “I wear a lot of different hats in my life.” She is expanding her line, House of Harlow 1960, which launched last year with jewelry, to include footwear and eyewear this year and handbags next year. Richie said the Winter Kate spring collection was inspired by the music, art and fashion of the late Sixties and Seventies, and she tried to make it “affordable and accessible.” Her fall collection evokes a darker, sleeker mood with its bustier, cigarette pants, vests, blouses and blazers.
PACINO’S DOLCE VITA: Dolce & Gabbana turned out to be something of an unofficial sponsor of the premiere of HBO’s Jack Kevorkian biopic “You Don’t Know Jack” on Wednesday night. Susan Sarandon, who plays a Kevorkian advocate, went for a strapless black cocktail dress. (Her new accessories — crutches and an orthopedic boot after a spill during a visit to Haiti — were not by the Italian designers.) Al Pacino, who plays Kevorkian, chose a black Dolce & Gabbana suit and shirt, and his girlfriend, Lucila Solá, wore a va-va-voom strapless black gown from the house. Pacino credits his paramour for improving his style. “She got me into Dolce & Gabbana,” said the actor as he held court during the after party at the Four Seasons restaurant. “I, well, I sort of don’t know, you know, so she got me into it, and it was good.” It turns out Pacino’s pretty easy to please. Asked what he likes about the suit, he said: “Well, I tell you, it fits. And it sort of looks OK, doesn’t it? I hope it does.”
CAN’T DO CANNES: Are stars afraid of the Cannes film festival? The jury lineup, revealed Thursday, boasts precious few Hollywood celebrities, with Kate Beckinsale and Benicio Del Toro the only big-name thesps on board. Under jury president Tim Burton, they will judge a lineup consisting mainly of unknown actors, with the notable exception of Sean Penn and Naomi Watts, in competition with director Doug Liman’s “Fair Game.” Woody Allen turned down the offer to compete for the coveted Palme d’Or award, according to festival director Thierry Frémaux. His latest feature, “You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger” — featuring a cast including Watts, Anthony Hopkins, Josh Brolin, Antonio Banderas and Freida Pinto — will show out of competition. Michael Douglas, returning to Cannes after an 18-year absence, won’t be competing for the best actor award since Oliver Stone also has opted to show his sequel to “Wall Street” on the sidelines of the official selection.
GOING DUTCH: The ongoing dispute between Joseph Abboud and JA Apparel now is officially a split decision. When a federal judge in January ruled on the specific ways Joseph Abboud could use his name following his split from JA Apparel Corp., both sides were quick to claim the decision as a victory. JA Apparel, which bought the Joseph Abboud trademarks in 2000, felt so strongly it filed a bill of costs with the court for $60,593.96 on the assumption it was the “prevailing party” in the case. On Tuesday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Theodore Katz begged to differ. “The judgment was ‘mixed’ with Abboud prevailing on the issue most seriously in contention, and JA Apparel prevailing on other issues,” the judge wrote in the explanatory order this week. He added: “Each party shall bear its own costs.”
BLOWN AWAY: Adding another path to the current desire for heritage, Donatella Versace once again has teamed up with Venini to produce an exclusive collection of hand-blown glass vases. “I’m so proud because with this new collaboration, we re-created some historical vases that Gianni had designed, obviously re-edited and streamlined,” she said at Wednesday’s presentation of the new Versace Casa collection in Milan.
The first Venini collaboration ran from 1997 to 2004.
The colorful and graphic vases, numbered and initialed, also include iconic pieces from the Nineties. They will be available starting in the fall at Versace boutiques and other select retailers throughout the world.
EASY BEING GREEN: Louis Vuitton will donate 10 percent of all sales on its U.S. Web site on April 22 to Global Green USA to mark the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. The donation will support the charity’s Green Schools Initiative for kindergarten through 12th grade in cities such as New Orleans and Los Angeles. The luxury fashion house has asked celebrities and tastemakers, including Zoe Saldana, André Balazs and André Leon Talley, to tweet to raise environmental awareness on Vuitton’s Twitter account and Web site starting today. “Louis Vuitton is actively committed to promoting environmental responsibility and sustainable development,” said Daniel Lalonde, President and chief executive officer of Louis Vuitton North America.