TRAVELING TAHARI: Elie Tahari has cut so many ribbons of late it must only be a matter of time before he designs his own pair of scissors. Late last month, the designer opened a store at Fashion Island in Newport Beach, Calif., with a party hosted by Jonathan Adler and Lara Spencer. While there, he engaged in some personal retail therapy by shopping for midcentury furniture and also staged a fashion show at Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills, followed by a Virginia Madsen-hosted dinner at Sunset Tower. “California is like our second home,” Tahari said at Saks. “This is the state where we have the most customers after New York.”
With little time to nurse his jet lag, Tahari hopped to London to check out his new Harrods shop, then headed to Istanbul to fete his first store there earlier this month. He made a stop in his native Israel before coming back to New York for the official opening of his new Saks boutique with co-host Katie Cassidy last Tuesday. Tahari showed no signs of travel fatigue. “I am telling people that my passport is my new fashion accessory,” he said.
CERRUTI SUITOR: Chinese men’s wear giant Trinity Group is working on a deal to acquire Paris-based fashion house Cerruti, WWD has learned. According to market sources, Trinity — which holds the license to distribute Cerruti 1881 men’s wear in Greater China — is in talks to purchase the group from U.S. private equity firm MatlinPatterson.
Asked to comment on the speculation, Sunny Wong, Trinity’s group managing director, replied, “Trinity is always looking for new opportunities and alliances to improve shareholders value.”
Officials at MatlinPatterson did not respond to requests for comment, while a spokeswoman for Cerruti said she could neither confirm nor deny any imminent transaction.
Trinity Group was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in November 2009. It is a member of the Li & Fung Group, which acquired the company in 2006.
KITSON SUES: Kitson is fighting back against Majestic Mills. The retailer has countersued the manufacturer of Nicole Richie’s Winter Kate clothing line, which launched a lawsuit in August claiming Kitson owed $225,000 worth of vests, dresses, cardigans and more.
In documents filed with the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Kitson argues that Majestic Mills’ failure to secure Richie for an appearance at a launch party for Winter Kate clothes and House of Harlow 1960 shoes deprived the retailer of profits in excess of $500,000. Kitson also asserts it was forced to take markdowns on Winter Kate goods when the brand was provided to competitors at cheaper prices.
Perhaps Kitson would have had better luck if Richie did children’s clothes. The retailer, which already has a 7,500-square-foot store in Santa Monica Place, is opening a roughly 2,500-square-foot kids’ store at the recently revamped shopping center on Nov. 15. “The kids’ business is doing better than women’s,” said Kitson owner Fraser Ross. “All these 12-year-olds want to look like Justin Bieber.”
LIVING LARGE: Hollywood is set to hit Rome later this week for the city’s fifth international film festival that kicks off Thursday. As part of the festival, Gucci together with Martin Scorsese and The Film Foundation — a nonprofit organization founded in 1990 by the director dedicated to preserving and restoring classic films — are set to present the world restoration premiere of Federico Fellini’s 1960 classic “La Dolce Vita” on Saturday evening.
After the screening, Gucci creative director Frida Giannini will fete the film’s 50th anniversary with guests expected to include Scorsese, Dante Ferretti, James Franco, Guillaume Canet, Charlotte Casiraghi and Eva Mendes. To date, Gucci has supported the restoration of six classic films and donated a total of $1.5 million to The Film Foundation.
HARVEY NICHOLS SETS HONG KONG FLAGSHIP: Harvey Nichols is building its presence in Hong Kong. In October 2011, the department store group will open an 83,000-square-foot flagship for Asia-Pacific in the Pacific Place development in Hong Kong, Harvey Nichols owner Dickson Concepts said. The Harvey Nichols store will occupy the site where the Hong Kong Seibu store stands, and whose lease expires in June 2011. The store will add to Harvey Nichols’ existing Hong Kong store at the Landmark Center.
The Pacific Place store will be designed by London interior design company Four IV, who have worked on a number of Harvey Nichols stores in the U.K. and Turkey. Outside the U.K., Harvey Nichols has stores in Turkey, Dubai, Saudi Arabia and Indonesia.
WEDDING PARTY: Typically, New York is ahead of the trend, if not setting it. But when it comes to legalizing gay marriage, the state is a little behind — behind five states and the District of Columbia to be exact. So on Wednesday night, Cornelia Guest and André Balazs are putting The Boom Boom Room to good use and hosting a fund-raiser along with New Yorkers for Marriage Equality to benefit HRC Campaign for New York Marriage. And because a little celeb endorsement never hurts, the organization has filmed 20-second spots, available on its Web site, with stars from Kevin Bacon and Mark Ruffalo to David Chang and Tom Colicchio stating, “I am a New Yorker and I support marriage equality.” Let the wedding bells ring.