How many people does it take to a light a cigarette? If you were on the stone steps outside Cipriani Wall Street during the first half of the Fashion Group International's annual Night of Stars last Thursday, then at least 172.
By the time 500 people wolfed down lobster salad, lamb chops, mushroom risotto, and asparagus, only one of what seemed like too-many-to-be-important awards had been presented. It was time for a collective smoke.
Michael Kors was lingering outside, telling a gaggle of smokers about the first time he quit. He recalled there was a group and a doctor, and each person had to write down the time when he or she would light up. "The doctor would say, 'You smoke when you read the paper', or 'You smoke when you drink coffee.' Then he came to me and said, 'You smoke when you're awake.'"
Ba-dump-bump. Self-entertainment is key when attending one of these gratuitously grand, kind of wonky, self-congratulatory events. But then again it's been a tough 12 months for fashion. Sales have fallen so precipitously, it's like the world's shoppers went on a global boycott. A pick-me-up was in order.
Holding court on one end of the great ballroom was Oscar de la Renta (the Super Star award) and Frida Giannini, who had not one but two people—James Franco and Mary J. Blige—present her an award. Diesel's Renzo Rosso and Kenneth Cole held down the other side, and sprinkled among the dozens of tables were fashion's muses: Dita Von Teese, Gwen Stefani, and Jon Bon Jovi, who had all the women in the room panting. (It's gotta be the hair).
Iman, who presented an award to Michael Kors, was happy to poke fun at her age. As she put on a pair of borrowed glasses to read her speech she deadpanned, "Getting old is a bitch." We should all be so bitchy.