It’s been a busy decade for Michael J. Fox and wife Tracy Pollan. Since the actor was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 1991, the two have raised $230 million for the Michael J. Fox Foundation, whose mission is to fund scientific research on the disease. “He knows them all,” Pollan said of the scientific terms Fox has picked up along the way. “I’m smart enough to surround myself with people that are smarter than me,” her husband explained.
To celebrate Parkinson’s Awareness Month, Pollan and Fox hosted a charity shopping fête at Ralph Lauren’s Madison Avenue men’s store last night. On the fashion connection, Pollan called it “unbelievable timing.” “We were shopping at the Ralph Lauren store in the Hamptons, because our son Sam is a big fan, and we were talking about an idea that Tracy’s had for years,” Fox explained. “It was to do this dog tag necklace for Parkinson’s—they connote service, we have total respect for the military, and in a way it’s honoring them. It just so happened that Jerry Lauren was there and overheard.”
Ralph’s brother eventually brought the fashion company and the foundation together, and the silver dog tags finally made their debut. Priced at $98, all proceeds from each tag went to the foundation. Ralph and Ricky Lauren and Tom Selleck stopped in early before guests such as Barbara Walters, Christine Baranski, and Matt Bomer packed the quarters. Partway through, David Lauren hopped on the mic to say a few words. “I grew up watching your shows,” he said to Fox. “I thought, ‘Oh God, he is the coolest guy.’ ” Nearby, Dylan Lauren told Style.com, “Family Ties was my favorite. I still watch the reruns. The funny thing is that I recently befriended Justine Bateman. It’s like completing the circle.”
Photo: Billy Farrell Agency / Courtesy of Ralph Lauren
Like uncle, like nephew? The sartorial eye seems to run, no surprise, in the Lauren family. At Greg Lauren’s art installation Counter Couture at the French Institute, the L.A.-based designer and artist has mocked up a sort of combination workroom-showroom probably not too different from his famous uncle Ralph’s—the key difference being that all the clothes here are made out of Japanese paper.
“From a young age, I’ve noticed the way a pocket flap fades, or wrinkles when it’s washed,” Lauren explained of his meticulous creations (pictured). “I’d been introduced to certain icons of style through clothing,” whether that was army uniforms, the perfect suit, or nautical gear, he continued. “I was taught to love all these different male archetypes. And at a certain point, I wanted to understand why that was, as opposed to trying to aspire to be someone else,” he added. Hence his art, not to mention his designs, which (like the frayed, oversized black cardigan he was wearing at the opening) are more bohemian than most of what’s come out of the RL workshop.
Speaking of, where was that paterfamilias? “I think he was going to the theater tonight,” shrugged Dylan Lauren, who came by to greet her cousin (and his wife, actress Elizabeth Berkley) before heading downtown to meet brother David at a Haiti fundraiser at their dad’s Soho store. Ralph’s brother, Jerry Lauren, couldn’t be persuaded to join them. “That one’s for the kids only,” he winked.