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August 20 2014

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Blasblog: Tales From The Couture Cocktail Circuit

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Balmainia is no laughing matter. Last night, the fashion house had planned to host a simple little cocktail party to celebrate the refurbishment of their store on the rue François—but by the time word of the fête reached me, the whole thing had blown into a full-on fashion gala. A few hours before the party, Balmain PR e-mailed to break the news that there would be no red carpet, runway show, or celebrity co-hosts, but there was no shortage of chic ladies in their latest Christophe Decarnin duds. “It’s a Balmain army,” Decades’ Cameron Silver observed, not only for the military influences on many of the large-shouldered jackets, but also for how many of the women here would kill if necessary to get their hands on the goods. In the middle of it all was Decarnin himself, soft-spoken and shy as always. He said that he enjoyed updating the store with antique moldings and gilded paneling, since the store hadn’t been touched up since the 1980′s. I thought he might have liked an eighties vibe—his designs have done more than a little digging in that territory—but he demurred. “The stuff here was not the good eighties.”

A few blocks down the rue François, Loewe was hosting a cocktail party of its own for a new line of leather outerwear classics Stuart Vevers designed for the label, as well as to celebrate their new, Katie Grand-styled campaign. Grand had originally only booked two models, Pixie Geldof and Louis Simonon, the son of the Clash frontman and sometime model, who fronted Prada’s Spring campaign last year. But once the snapping began, she felt that there was one trenchcoat that wasn’t right for Pixie or Louis. “I was walking my dog in the park and Katie called,” Tricia Simonon (above, with Louis, her son), remembered at the party. “She asked me to come on the shoot, but I didn’t want to be the sort of mother who tries to jump in on her son’s campaign. I didn’t want to step on his toes.” She didn’t have the chance, not literally at least: She laughed as she told me that Louis took off before she even arrived.

Photo: Courtesy of Loewe

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