Fashion's Night Out descended upon the city again last night, and celebrities ran wild with shoppers while the champagne flowed. But, for The Cut, this was a learning experience, too! We now know that Heidi Klum's fans will actually punch you, and that Olivia Palermo may or may not be designing her own clothing collection. We already knew Courtney Love's shopping habit waits for nobody, but that never gets old. More bits of wisdom and hearsay ahead.
Heidi Klum’s German teenage fans will cut you to get to her. We waited for two hours among Klum's crazed German teenage fans at Destination Maternity for the maternity designer's anticipated arrival, and at some point those guys started to lose it. “I love Heidi so much I will vomit if she does not come!” one said. As Klum emerged, one of the teens literally punched us in the face to get a better view as she took photos and did interviews with the some 50 crews that showed up. We went to the bathroom to check the damage to our face. Red mark and a little bruise, nothing some M.A.C. couldn’t fix.
Jessica Alba doesn’t appreciate Janelle Monáe, but does appreciate a good bag. By the time singer Janelle Monáe took the stage at Ralph Lauren Soho, all of West Broadway was effectively blocked to traffic due to the crowds. And yet, honored guest Jessica Alba spent the first two songs focused on her Blackberry. Harumph! At least earlier in the day, Alba told us she's not one to give away good fashion, even as the pieces get dated. “I just archive it and save it for my daughter for later,” she said. “My first designer purses, Prada and Chanel bags, and things like that.”
The Ranger’s Henrik Lundqvist wouldn’t mind being a fashion intern like Sean Avery. “I like that side of the business,” he said at Hugo Boss last night. “You get to meet a lot of people, and it’s good because, you know, I have a hockey career for ten or fifteen years, I hope, and then I have to do something else, so it’s good to meet people and make the connect.” He got his first real lesson in fashion photography doing a recent shoot for Vogue. “The tricky part was I had equipment on, so I was pretty big and the girls were pretty short and tiny, so in order to be the right size in the photo, I had to move back and forward a lot.”
Courtney Love will shop for ball gowns whenever she damn well pleases. Halfway through the Valentino poker tournament, Courtney Love crashed the party, said hello to the circle of celebrity players, and then moved with incredible speed to peruse the stock in the store. She looked only at gowns, picking a black, beaded dress. After discussing the price with the salesperson, she said she’d have to think about it and returned to browsing.
Courtney Love will also try to help out a reporter in need. While being stymied in our attempt to chat up Chace Crawford in the VIP area at Dolce & Gabbana, we felt a kind hand on our shoulder. “Do you want me to ask him to come talk to you? You seem nice.” We turned around and it was Courtney Love! Man, we love her.
Michael Kors was almost too intimidated to sing with Idina Menzel. Guests at Michael Kors’s store had been promised a duet between the designer and Idina Menzel, but at first it seemed like he was just going to let Menzel take it solo. Menzel sang “Poker Face” in tribute to her performance of the same song with Lea Michele on Glee. And then about halfway through “Defying Gravity,” Kors finally worked up the nerve to sing along. It wasn’t bad, actually (see video proof here), but Kors assured us this was a one-time-only performance.
We may never know who won the Ping-Pong match between Thom Browne and Olympic fencer Tim Morehouse. While others were running around Bergdorf’s trying to get a glimpse of Victoria Beckham and Sarah Jessica Parker, a Ping-Pong tournament was in full swing at the men’s store across the street. Olympic fencer Tim Morehouse had just told us he’d been practicing all year, because no way would he lose to a designer, when Thom Browne swept into the room and challenged him. So who won? “I beat Thom Browne, I want everyone to know that,” Morehouse said. “I did,” said Browne. “Look, he was dressed nicer than me, but I won the game,” countered Morehouse. Browne shook his head. “I’m just as competitive as an Olympic athlete,” Browne told us. “He didn’t win.” We watched the match, but we also don’t understand Ping-Pong, and therefore will never know the definitive answer.
Simon Doonan went to Slate so he wouldn’t wind up an old toothless man still working at the Observer. “I'd been at the Observer for ten years, I've been at Barney's for 25 years — I'm such a creature of habit. You know, I thought, ‘If I don't try something new, I'll be here until my teeth fall out,’ he said at Barneys. “It was like, ‘Alright already, give someone else a chance at that magazine to do a style/culture beat.’” He does, however, want to stay at Barneys another 25 years, till when “I’ll be 150.” He continued, “I love retail. Retail's very exciting. I always tell young kids who want to be fashion designers. ‘Don't become a fashion designer.’ Get a career in retail like me and Julie Gilhart. We have fabulous, fun, interesting jobs. Becoming a successful fashion designer is like a lottery win. Only one in every billion people can actually pull it off. But any schmegeggy can work in retail and pull it off and having a stimulating career, à la moi.”
Bee Shaffer may be Ricky Van Veen’s assistant, but she’s not his slave. “No, I don’t get coffee,” she said of her job at the website, Notional, during a brief visit to the Balenciaga store. “It’s a mixture of things. There’s typical-assistant scheduling work, and Notional is a really small company — there’s only ten of us full-time — so they ask my opinion about a lot of things.” As for fashion shows, she’s only going to three a day, if that this year. “I’m not in school anymore. “I don’t only have two hours of classes a day.” As for survival tips, she says she doesn’t have any. “My mother has ten shows a day. That’s when you have survival tips.”
The Cobrasnake is going to be really smelly at the end of every day during Fashion Week. When we saw ubiquitous photographer Mark “the Cobrasnake” Hunter outside Helmut Lang, where the store was hosting a raucous dance party in the street, he said that even though he’s attending more shows than ever this year, he won’t be changing outfits between them. “I think people embrace me more for my photography and less for my personal style, so I can get away with that.” Instead, he goes for practicality. “I’m constantly hot and sweaty, so I like to wear shirts and T-shirts and performance shoes from Adidas. I could run a marathon right now.”
Sarah Jessica Parker gives Cynthia Nixon sartorial advice. Sort of. “You know what Sarah Jessica Parker always says when someone compliments what she’s wearing?" Nixon asked us at Calvin Klein last night. "‘Thank you, I made it myself,’ because after a while, you feel really self-conscious. What did I do? I just put it on."
Harley Viera-Newton gets nightmares about deejaying. When we saw Newton at Helmut Lang’s outdoor dance party, she said, of deejaying: “You’re sort of the one making the party, so if you screw up, that’s it.” She also had nightmares about walking in the upcoming Betsey Johnson show. She’d never done it (“I’m not tall enough,”) but had agreed to do it this one time and was kind of glad it fell through.
Pharrell Williams thinks Julian Casablancas should do a fashion line. “He’s got good taste. He can dress,” the rapper said of the Stroke at Billionaire Boys Club, where fans had to buy a T-shirt to hug the man and take a picture. The T-shirt-buying policy was meant to avoid the fate of last year’s FNO event, which the police had to shut down due to uncontrollable crowds. Pharrell left us with a free concert on West Broadway, and a parting style tip for men. "You gotta think about how you feel in the morning, and what you're doing and what the weather is like," he said about how he chooses what to wear every day. So what did he think about this morning when he got dressed? "I can't tell you. Cause it's dirty."
Jessica Szohr totally gets the irony of Vanessa’s wardrobe.
“They always put her in a lot of layers and different patterns and colors and all that kind of stuff. And she’s kind of like, as the seasons have gone on, she’s grown up a little bit more and is more sophisticated, so it’s not the crazy hi-tops with the bright yellow leggings," Szohr said of her Gossip Girl character at Saks. "I like a lot of the sweaters she’s been wearing, and it’s funny because a lot of the stuff that she wears is like Diane Von Furstenberg and Marc Jacobs, but she plays this character who, like couldn’t afford it.”
Lily Donaldson cares about the little people. The model wore a cone-shaped Chinese farmer's hat while hawking pineapple buns for $1 at Alexander Wang's booth in Opening Ceremony's Parisian flea market in the Ace Hotel. As Wang started shooting off his $100 T-shirts via one of those guns used at baseball stadiums and the crowd ducked for cover, a concerned Donaldson cautioned, "Watch your eyes!" Thanks to her brave efforts, no FNOers were harmed.
Olivia Palermo is designing something, but she wouldn’t call it a collection.
“That was a little exaggerated. There’s nothing specific. There’s nothing definite,” she said when we saw her at Henri Bendel. But in theory, if she were to design clothes, as it seems like she might be but will not confirm, what would they be like? “In designing a collection, it needs to be consistent. I would definitely go for, kind of, an elegant, glamorous feel.” Oh, we give up.