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July 30 2014

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Dinner On The House

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Fashion week presents a particular problem to any scheduler: When? “Fashion week’s so nuts,” designer Waris Ahluwalia admitted. “I didn’t have an open night.” So when he went to host an “intimate” (25—which turned into 45—person) dinner to celebrate his presentation at CIRCA’s Lincoln Center accessories lounge, he decided to bat cleanup, and invite friends to supper after the end of the week. It worked. Last night, CIRCA CEO Chris Del Gatto and Stephanie Winston Wolkoff hosted Johan Lindeberg, Scott Campbell, Veronica Webb, Sophie Théallet, Aaron Young, Terence Koh, Carlos Quirarte, and Ahluwalia’s mother, Darshan (“the guest of honor, always”) piled into Tiny’s in Tribeca for a last-minute dinner toasting House of Waris’ Spring jewelry and scarf collections. “A downtown celebration for an uptown exhibition,” he called it.

The collection being celebrated marks the second time that the House of Waris—known largely for its jewelry—has forayed into scarves. At a follow-up visit at his studio today, the designer explained that the two categories only seem different. They’re both, he reasoned, about keeping craftsmanship alive for a new generation—of craftspeople, as well as of customers. (The Rajastani embroiderers who work on his hand-loomed cashmere scarves now have their hands so full from his business that they’ve stopped working with any other.) This season sees a major uptick in the number of scarf designs offered, with many motifs carrying over from the jewelry collection. They range from the simple—a gorgeous plain taupe cashmere scarf with embroidered border—to the ornate, with chains picked out in contrast thread weaving their way over the whole. They have a richness—and a price tag—consistent with the hours of work they take to complete. But luckily for entry-level fans, batik-dyed cotton-silk scarves start at $300.

Photo: Patrick McMullan

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