Stella McCartney Monkeys Around

With Deborah Schoeneman

Photo: AP/Wideworld

Stella McCartney’s monkey business got a little out of hand recently. When the designer was honored last month in Beverly Hills by Saks Fifth Avenue and Cedars-Sinai, she wanted to pick out the tablecloths for the gala. An insider tells us, however, that the organizers went ape when they saw her pattern, which featured monkeys fornicating with human skeletons, some of the monkeys holding guns to their heads. “Maybe for the younger crowd this could have worked,” our insider muses. “But the planning committee includes a lot of people from Hollywood’s older generation, like Kirk Douglas’s wife, Anne.” It was decided that McCartney’s pattern was inappropriate for a cancer benefit (not to mention that there’s a war going on). Instead, the tables were covered in light pink and white.

Anna Wintour’s 16-year-old daughter, Bee Shaffer, has been listed as a contributor on Teen Vogue’s masthead since the fashion-bible offshoot launched a couple of years ago. This summer, Bee will be in the office more than usual, but do not call her an intern. “You have to be in college to be an intern at Condé Nast,” editor-in-chief Amy Astley told us. “She’s an unpaid contributing editor. She has working papers through her school to come and help out.” Meanwhile, Wintour’s goddess-themed gala benefit for the Met’s Costume Institute, which she’s co-chairing with Tom Ford and Nicole Kidman on April 28, is coming along quite nicely. Several actresses have been asked to lend some of their more famous dresses for the accompanying exhibit. Susan Sarandon went the extra mile—literally. She not only donated the Dolce & Gabbana dress, shoes, and bag she wore the night she won the Oscar for Dead Man Walking to the Institute’s permanent collection, but—without being asked—personally delivered the ensemble.

She may be the new face of Louis Vuitton, but Jennifer Lopez hasn’t stopped promoting her own brand name. A source tells us that J.Lo will launch another fragrance this fall. (Her first perfume, Glow by J.Lo, has become the No. 1 seller in the world.) She’s decided to go a bit more upmarket this time around. Rather than appear naked—as she did in her campaign for Glow—Lopez wears elegant frocks and evening gowns in the new ads. So what’s the name of the new perfume? J.Lo’s entourage is trying to keep it under wraps until a launch party in Los Angeles in June. For now, those involved are allowed to refer to it only as JL II. They could call it Afterglow . . .

Paul Theroux’s new book, Dark Star Safari: Overland From Cairo to Cape Town, wasn’t all he was working on while trekking across Africa. The curmudgeonly travel writer says he needed to do something at night to keep his mind off what was happening on the streets. “To restrain myself—because the place is full of prostitutes and opportunities—I kept busy writing a short erotic novel,” he told us last week at the Explorers Club. “It’s very erotic.” The novel, The Stranger at the Palazzo D’oro & Other Stories, revolves around the affair between a young man and an older woman; it will hit England this summer, and will be published in the U.S. next year. Hollywood has already come calling. Robert Evans has expressed interest in the film rights.

Model of the moment Karolina Kurkova’s mug may be all over the place in ads and catalogues for Tommy Hilfiger, Victoria’s Secret, and Express, but the bouncers at Joe’s Pub didn’t seem to recognize her when she showed up to hear her friends, indie glam-rock band Elefant, perform. The bouncer insisted that the club had hit maximum capacity—even though others were allowed in and it was not that crowded inside—and told the Czech catwalker to get in line like a civilian. After about five minutes of foot-tapping, she headed across the street to Indochine to cool her heels. Forty-five minutes later, she came back, only to be rejected again. “I’m going to tell all the magazines!” Kurkova screeched, furiously pecking at her cell phone. At that point, she and her mini-entourage stormed away.

KITCHEN CONFIDENTIAL: Competition for space in Tribeca’s Worth Building (next door to Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s eatery 66) is heating up between chef Geoffrey Zakarian of Town and Don Pintabona, formerly of Tribeca Grill… . And on the East End, NV will reopen as the Resort during Memorial Day weekend after undergoing a $500,000 renovation.

What: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Gala, hosted byTom Ford, Nicole Kidman and Anna Wintour. It’s the hottest ticket of thespring and also celebrates the opening of the Institute’s Goddess exhibit.Where: At the museum (of course!)When: Monday, April 28Performances by: Diana Ross for dinner and Ashanti at the after-party.More Info: Go to or call (212) 570-3948

Stella McCartney Monkeys Around