Erin Wasson: supermodel. Part-time stylist. Art promoter? After hosting a little party on Friday for Whitney Biennial featured artist Drew Heitzler, she can now add another job title to her business card. The venue was her own East Village pad, and the revelers at the teatime affair—it went from 4 to 6 p.m.—included Shamim Momin, the co-curator of the Biennial; David Quadrini, owner of the Angstrom galleries in Los Angeles and Dallas; and artists Walead Beshty, Maynard Monroe, and Michael Phalen. Wasson even had a DJ: artist Spencer Sweeney. “David Quadrini opened my eyes to so many cool artists,” she told us. “I feel lucky to have the opportunity to be part of the community.” And though Wasson has been a center of attention in magazines and on runways for almost a decade now, she tried to make sure eyes weren’t on her at this fête. “Drew’s work is amazing. I just wanted to help celebrate his accomplishment—this party has nothing to do with me and everything to do with him.”
Designers paying models in clothing is an age-old practice, as is models helping themselves to an accessory or two at the end of a show—whether they’re invited to or not. Such was the case with one sticky-fingered girl backstage at YSL last week, who gave herself away when we spotted a very familiar-looking black patent-leather platform Mary Jane on the end of her very familiar leg last night. We’re too polite to name names, but if Stefano Pilati is reading this, we’d be happy to lead him to his missing footwear.
What do models eat? Despite frequent avowals that they live on burgers and fries, it seems they like a guilt-free treat as much as the rest of us. According to the owner of My Berry, an NYC-style smoothie joint that recently opened on Rue Vieille du Temple, there have been a lot of “very tall, very pretty girls” coming by of late. Although we’d like to think it’s the vitamins in the fruit they’re hunting down, we have a feeling it may be the fat-free frozen yogurt that’s the draw. According to one visitor, “it’s so good it tastes like ice cream.”
Soaking wet one minute, burnt to a crisp the next. Tied up tight, scrubbed mercilessly, and teased endlessly. The life of a model during show season is hectic—and that’s just her hair. For a better look into what modeling the collections is really like, we had Derek Blasberg spend the day with Coco Rocha in Paris. Multiple vente lattes and numerous fittings later, here’s what he sent us.
Although Coco depends on her agent, Micki, for her schedule and her mother, Juanita, for her sanity (the two form her entourage), according to the supermodel herself, “I don’t think I could do this without my driver, Phillip.” Not just an expert at navigating the streets of he French capital and the first person Coco sees every morning (here they are at Starbucks, despite Coco’s attempts at caffeine cutbacks), Phillip was trained in the army, worked as a bodyguard, and honed his fashion teeth driving Daria in seasons previous. “I had to fight to get him,” Coco says.
In addition to her show schedule, Coco has other commitments this week—one is filming a reel for future film gigs, like fashion commercials and beauty contracts. She has, in fact, thought about making the jump to films. “I like old movies,” Coco says. “So if I were to do a movie, I would want it to be like that. Or a musical—I don’t like to sing, but I love to dance.” In fact, that’s how she was discovered: jigging at an Irish dance competition in her native Vancouver.
“It’s hard to find time to come and visit my Coco,” Juanita, the model’s mother, told us. “Except during the fashion weeks, when I know where she’ll be.” Turns out, though, that Juanita has a bigger task at hand than catching up with her daughter—while she was in Milan, Coco’s New York apartment was flooded. (“Now I have a pool,” Coco deadpans.) So after Paris, Juanita, a flight attendant for Air Canada, will be hightailing it to the Big Apple to assess the damage. But first she posed with her daughter in front of one of her Yves Saint Laurent billboards. “What can I say?” Juanita said. “I’m a proud Mommy.”
“Sometimes a go-see turns into a fitting,” says Coco outside of the Sonia Rykiel offices. “Which is a good thing, ’cause it means I don’t have to come back!” Depending on the clients, each show requires at least one fitting. (And with some designers, fittings can happen at all hours of the night.)
In addition to the perk of sharing the same oxygen as a fashion icon, one plus Coco lists about working with Karl Lagerfeld is that she also gets to work with Odile Gilbert, whom she caught up with backstage at Christian Lacroix, another show that the coiffeuse does. “She’s always up for a good time,” Coco says. “And she can make all this backstage mayhem seem like fun.”
The backstage mayhem that Coco is referring to has a lot to do with the backstage photographers, seen here capturing the makeup looks at Lacroix. A life in front of the cameras wasn’t exactly Coco’s plan. “I was serious about dancing,” she says. “But an agent in Vancouver kept pressing me to model, so one day I said I would. After doing some stuff in Asia and coming to New York, I was booked by Steven Meisel. And that will do it.”
At yet another fitting (this one for Yves Saint Laurent), Coco catches up with the house’s designer, Stefano Pilati. How is he doing at this point? “Not that good,” he says. “It’s the night before the showat this point, I always hate it all!” But what about Coco? “Oh, I always love her.”
Although Juanita had some concerns about what exactly the material was that gave Coco’s hair the wet look at Hussein Chalayan (apparently, one season it was lip gloss, which isn’t exactly easy to wash out), after her last show, Coco’s spirits were up. “Finally, I get to see a bit of Paris,” she said outside the Chalayan venue, which had a pretty good view of the Eiffel Tower. “But not for long.” After this photo was taken, Coco had dinner with her French agents and then headed to bed—in just a few hours she’d have to be up for her Hermès and Chanel fittings. For more online Coco entertainment, check out her Web site: www.coco-rocha.com.
According to many (including Stefano Pilati, Riccardo Tisci, and Karl Lagerfeld), Mariacarla Boscono is the most photogenic face to come out of Italy since Sophia Loren. And now, having been in front of the camera for nearly a decade, she’s starting to branch out into other forms of expression. For the past few years, she’s studied acting (she starred in a production of “The Maids,” with Margherita Missoni, at the Lee Strasberg studio in New York last year), and last night at the Givenchy party, she was testing out her newest passion: photography. Paparazzi photography, she joked as she snapped pics of pals like Lily Donaldson, Liya Kebede, and Jefferson Hack. “I figured people had gotten tired of pictures of me,” she said. “But maybe they wouldn’t mind pictures from me.” We’ll find out soon enough: Her pics from last night will be in an upcoming issue of Italian Vanity Fair.