jeudi 10 septembre 2009

A night to remember

Last night, major cities in the US, UK, Italy, China, Brazil, India, Russia, Japan, France, Greece held a global celebration of fashion. Conceived by Vogue's Anna Wintour, in collaboration with the Council of Fashion Designers of America, Fashion's Night Out was designed as a global initiative to promote retail, restore consumer confidence and of course celebrate fashion. Here in Paris, the fancy stores in the golden triangle of Avenue Montaigne, rue Francois I and George V threw their doors wide open for the general public. Champagne flowed freely and in most of the stores a real party atmosphere reigned. People came out to have fun and be frivolous and maybe spot a celebrity or two.

To get in the stores, one needed to have an invitation. Once you had it in hand you pretty much could go everywhere. At least that's what we thought till we reached Montaigne Market where we were told that we need to have the "Montaigne Market" invite! Apparently too many of the hoi-polloi were in their store and they needed to do some crowd control. A bit surprising given the general idea behind the night. Oh well, not a moment more was wasted and we promptly moved towards Chanel where they were much more democratically welcoming the crowd. A flash of the invite and we were in. Lots of beautifully dressed people, all sporting the double C logos of course!

We meandered down to Pucci where we were treated to a mini-runway show. Really mini as there were only two models. It was fun nonetheless and it was nice to see the fall collection up front and personal. I think the Diane von Furstenberg store was the most fun. They had a great DJ playing funky tunes along with some cool musicians. And while there was copious Champagne, they likewise had hookah pipes and lots of sweet things to nibble on.

Pucci models

I'm sure there were a number of famous people swanning about but not being quite up to date with French celebrities, I didn't get to spot anyone. Not until of course we were headed towards the intersection of Avenue Montaigne and Francois I, and who should we see but Sebastian Chabal! Not quite who I was expecting ( I was thinking I would spot Carine Roitfeld!) but it was amazing to see the number of people posing with him. Even my friend had to have her photo with him!

I declined the photo op with Chabal but I couldn't resist the next "star" we saw. Call me groupie but when we spotted Karl Lagerfeld, I had to have my photo op with him! It wasn't my most dignified moment (though I didn't have to push so much to make my way towards him!), but the goal was achieved. And he even signed my Vogue Fashion Night Out invitation. Even though it was 9 in the evening, he still had his trademark dark glasses, and his mane is as snowy white as ever. What surprised me was how gracious he was with the hordes of people flashing their cameras at him and how patient he was with the people asking for his signature. I guess it takes years of practice.

I don't know if we contributed towards the lofty goal of promoting retail but we certain hit the mark in having fun while celebrating fashion!

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