Pop Stars, Models, and More Fête Michael Kors in Paris
How do you top a backstage serenade at your Fall show from Bette Midler? Or Judy Collins singing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" at your party at the Carlyle in New York? With Mary J. Blige at the American Ambassador's residence in Paris, of course. Your brand only turns 30 once, and Michael Kors is making the most of it this season. Yesterday started with a preview breakfast at his newly opened Rue Saint-Honoré store, his biggest in the world, and ended with a seated dinner for 200—Jennifer Hudson, Zoe Saldana, Carmen Kass, and Natasha Poly included—in a candlelit tented space in the garden of Charles H. Rivkin and his wife Susan M. Tolson's ambassadorial manse in the 8th. The grandeur of the setting notwithstanding, the evening—in true Kors style—was completely unpretentious. At one point, CEO John Idol even jumped behind the bar to help serve guests Champagne.
Blige—who told Style.com she's been wearing Kors for a decade—"ever since I picked up a striped top at Neiman's, and I still have it"—was visibly nervous on stage before suddenly announcing that she's set to play Nina Simone in a movie and launching into an admirable rendition of "Ne Me Quitte Pas." But she'd loosened up considerably by minute eight of "Stairway to Heaven," even pulling a few moves worthy of Robert Plant. Her version of U2's "One" had the exhausted fashion set up on their feet, primed for her own megahit "Family Affair." Afterward, Kors had the superstar in tears. "Mary," he said, "your talent, your strength, and your exuberance, it rips my heart out; you were spectacular." Many in the crowd felt the same way about the night as a whole.