TOASTING TILLMAN: “I’ve never had to ring a man up and ask him out to dinner,” said Alex Shulman on Tuesday night, as she discussed her plot to lure the outgoing British Fashion Council chairman Harold Tillman to a surprise party in his honor. The first time she rang, “He rejected me. So I had to swallow my pride and say, ‘Can I have a date? Any date?’” Guests at 34, a restaurant near the U.S. Embassy in Grosvenor Square, included Sir Philip Green, Sarah Burton, Anya Hindmarch, Amanda Wakeley, Joseph Velosa, Joan Burstein, Natalie Massenetwho will replace Tillman as chairman next year — and Frances Corner.

Green, a longtime pal of Tillman’s, praised him for “always being on the phone, asking people for favors” on the BFC’s behalf. “Fashion’s a tough business, a tough game. And there are no free gifts. Well done, Harold,” said Green.

This story first appeared in the November 5, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.