Dear DPC –

Luca Luca’s Fall 2004 show – my first-ever Fashion Week event in the Bryant Park tent. WOW. Walking south on Sixth Avenue from the Subway, I was first greeted by several of New York’s Finest, all done up in full riot gear and toting machine guns. Not sure what kind of fashion emergency they were expecting, keeping the world safe for sequins.

Outside, the tent: stark white – inside, stark black. Immediately inside I spotted Bill Cunningham, in his sensible LL Bean parka. We both admired a young man attired in a black & tan suit with a bold geometric print and a matching hat. I was delighted I’d chosen the same color scheme for the evening.

Luca Luca’s friendly PR crew handed me a bottle of Evian and graciously showed me to a (black) seat in the second row near the end of the runway. Glenda Bailey (in a grey sequined sweater) was across the runway from me, and Frederic Fekkai smiled as he took his seat a few places to my right. I cursed my hairdresser for spending this week in Florida, stranding me and my hideous roots next to Mr. Highlights. Peter Beard (never one to miss an event with models) sat towards the middle of the runway.

Upbeat Brazilian dance music played as everyone filed in – Adelina Wong sat on my right, and to my left was a handsome gent called Karim. At around 8:20 the lights went down, and the tent began to throb with deafening techno music. The whole atmosphere hooked me instantly. Karim couldn’t help noticing as I gasped.

“ Girl, it hasn’t even STARTED yet and your mouth is open,” he teased.

“ I know,” I said. “It’s my first time."

“ Hooray!” he replied, patting my knee.

The models began stalking down the red metal runway in fur-collared coats and narrow cigarette pants, then black and occasionally pink evening gowns trimmed with rhinestones. There was a lot of flesh, and a lot of sparkle – perfect for women who need no underwear.

The metal floor and the 4” stilettos was a precarious combo, even for professional catwalkers. They all glared ferociously at the telephoto lenses stationed at the far end of the runway, clicking shutters seeming in sync with the music. No one stumbled until the final bow – but it was nowhere near Naomi Campbell’s infamous wipeout.

It was over in 15 minutes. The lights came on. My new pal Karim asked if I was going backstage. Like a total hayseed, I incredulously replied “Gosh – can I really?” He gallantly led me through the stylish horde – carefully stepping around the lady in the bustled hot pink coat – through the stage door. Behind the black scrim, chaos reigned: air kisses rampant, glowing praise bestowed in animated Italian and harried waiters valiantly trying not to spill their trays of champagne on the guests or the merchandise.

I managed to shake hands with The Man, Luca Orlandi, clearly enjoying the energy and excitement of the evening almost as much as your wide-eyed correspondent, who can’t wait to go back for more. Until then, I remain yours in charmeuse satin,

— Daphne





Lycée Français de New York Gala, “An Evening in Monte Carlo"
Models Brittany Hill, Abigal, Mia Grettve, and Laura Dever play Craps
The international community celebrated in high style at the Lycée Français de New York Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street with nearly 600 guests turning out for the glamorous event despite a fierce rainstorm, including Karolina Kurkova, Liya Kebede, Gilles Mendel, Bettina Zilkha, Jean-Marie Messier, Antoine Verglas, Mia Grettve and more.

Karolina Kurkova
The evening, which received the high patronage of Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan and raised money for LFNY, kicked off with cocktails and dinner honoring François Bujon de l’Estang, Chairman of Citigroup France and former Ambassador of France to the United States.

After the five-star meal from world renowned chef Daniel Boulud and champagne by Nicolas Feuillatte, Piers Davies of Christie’s conducted a live auction of exceptional vacations and luxury goods. At $16,000, a trip to Cannes for the Film Festival with accommodations on a private yacht was the highest-selling item. Other outstanding items included a Ducati motorcycle with a leather motorcycle jacket worn by Heidi Klum in the fall Victoria’s Secret fashion show; a trip to Paris for Fashion Week with accommodations at Hotel Costes; a tour for 30 people of Peter Max’s private atelier; a stunning Bulgari ring; a Chanel watch; and an incredibly chic J. Mendel fur.

After the fabulous lots were auctioned off, guests danced the night away and “gambled” in the LFNY casino. The evening wrapped up with a raffle for a sporty black Hyundai car. Finally, when revelers left for the evening, they took with them bags of goodies from Guerlain, Givenchy, Occitane, Vertigo, Firmenich, and more.

The 2004 Corporate Sponsors were: Citigroup, Crédit Lyonnais, Fleet Bank, JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, L’Oréal, Société Générale, CDC IXIS, BNP Paribas, Wachovia Securities, Albanese Development, CIC, and others.

The Lycée Français de New York (LFNY) is a not-for-profit, coeducational independent school founded in 1935 by a group of French and American individuals. It is unique in that it is chartered by the New York State Board of Regents and accredited by the French Ministry of National Education. It currently enrolls 1,050 students representing 44 nationalities and does not receive any subsidies from the French or US governments. 20% of the Lycée students receive scholarships to cover tuition which is the lowest of New York State private schools.
Mia Grettve
Shari Piré
Jody Raida
Liya Kebede
François Bujon de l’Estang, Elsa Berry, and Ezra Zilka
Ezra Zilka, Marcel Simoneau, and François Bujon de l’Estang
Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne and Fabienne Bousquet-Chavanne
Abigal, Antoine Verglas, Brittany Hill, and Mia Grettve
Catherine Moriani, Claude Audi, Jean-Marie Messier, and Antoinette Messier
Gilles Mendel and Karolina Kurkova help with the live auction
Antoine Verglas and Christiane Celle
François Bujon de l’Estang, Anne Bujon de l’Estang, and Isabelle Geday
Karolina Kurkova
Brittany Hill with Heidi Klum’s motorcycle jacket
Jean-Marie Messier



A Weekend Lost to Fashion

This year I was swept into fashion week to see a show by the curiously named design team: Guido. What piqued my interest was the level of irony being attached to such a moniker. I also got to see what the alternative MAO space over on 38th Street is like.

Pierre Carrilero and Eric Damon

Carson Kressly from Queer Eye for the Straight Guy was there. He told my friend Richard that he looked fantastic (Richard was wearing penny loafers with green checked pants). It was a discriminating compliment that I’m sure Richard will cherish forever.

Saturday afternoon I went over to see the Pierrot show. The show was great fun. The designer Pierre Carrilero himself was standing at the runway entrance, emceeing the show. He played his French charms to the hilt, cracking jokes that perfectly complimented the playful knitwear collection that featured pieces with names like We are Siamese and Lady and the Tramp. Even the photographers in the flashbulb phalanx at the end of the runway seemed to relax and enjoy it.

I also attended the
sass & bide show, which was more of a traditional affair right down to the celebrity (R&B star Mya) in the front row.

Between the two shows I spent two hours at the tents. Everyone was talking about the Jeremy Scott show coming up at Crobar. The invitations to this event were the size of a poster.

Karen Levitt and Jeremy Scott

Unfortunately, I took my time getting to his show and walked in just as it was ending.

The central dance floor at Crobar had been transformed into a cheerleading stage where teenage cheerleaders performed in Jeremy Scott cheerleading outfits. Backstage, Scott was distributing hugs as the dressing room rapidly transformed into the Crobar VIP room.

The Scott after party was at The Tribeca Grand — full of familiar faces from my day at the shows. Harmonie Korine breezed by a few times. Jeremy Scott showed up after midnight. The party was festive but every one, myself included, seemed wiped out from the long day of fashion.

— Alec




Escada, Bal Harbour hosts 2004 Spring/Summer trunk show and luncheon
Barbara Becker and Daisy Olivera
The luncheon table
The German design house, Escada hosted an invitation-only luncheon featuring the 2004 Spring/Summer Ready to Wear Collection Thursday at the Indian Creek home of prominent Miami socialite Gillian Dinnerstein.

Models in Escada Spring/Summer Collection
Guests enjoyed a sit down luncheon prepared by caterer Acquolina from New York and informal modeling of the collection. Escada employees including the Bal Harbour Director, Lynn Neldberg, were on hand to take orders for the Spring/Summer Collection.

The event also honored the Jackson Memorial Foundation Gala Committee 2004 who raised over $800,000 at their Bal Masque event. Guests found luxurious beach towels embazoned with the Escada name on their chairs and $150 gift certificates tucked into their napkins to be used for shopping. One lucky guest, Beth Tosca, found a $1,500 gift certificate at her place setting.

In the crowd: Fana Holtz, Silvia Fortun, Tita Puopolo, Marlen Pernetti, Jeannie Etter, Jacqueline Silverman, Barbara Becker, Veronica Cuerva, Andria Holtz, Beatriz Clancy, Monica Heftler, Claudine Smurfit, Anne Rubino, Phyllis Meyers, Zaedy Pozo, Elizabeth Taylor, Caty Jiminez, Larissa Pozo, Diana Ares, Linda McEnamy, Joan Bender, Martha LaGarde, Odalys Garcia and Rosa Mora.
Beth Tosca and Melani Stasinopoulos
Sonia "Tita" Puopolo and Veronica Cervera
Marysol Patton and Carol Bell
Gillian Dinnerstein and Jacqueline Silverman
Silvia Fortun and Mari Alarcon
Lynn Neldberg and Katy Jimenez
Marlen Pernetti and Gilda Espin
Pupi Perez - Abreu and Joan Carosella
Odalys Garcia, Zurami Martinez, and Andrea Schwartz
The Indian Creek Island Home of Gillian Dinnerstein
The guests enjoying lunch on a beautiful day

Photographs by David Heischrek





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© 2006 David Patrick Columbia & Jeffrey Hirsch/NewYorkSocialDiary.com