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Hats Off

Prince Andrew braved London’s chilly breezes at the Serpentine Gallery’s summer benefit party Tuesday evening, and being a proper Englishman, what was he talking about? The weather, of course."It’s certainly worth facing the...

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Prince Andrew braved London’s chilly breezes at the Serpentine Gallery’s summer benefit party Tuesday evening, and being a proper Englishman, what was he talking about? The weather, of course.

"It’s certainly worth facing the cold for a charitable event such as this," he said. "The ladies seem to be doing extremely well, very brave indeed."

Guests including Iman and David Bowie, Dustin Hoffman, Elle Macpherson, Tracey Emin, Jade Jagger, Patrick Cox, Jemima Khan, Jessica de Rothschild and Saffron Aldridge all weathered the outdoor event. Of course, Sophie Dahl found a clever way to stay warm, grabbing the ever-eligible Tim Jefferies for a slow dance late in the evening — though the two left separately.

But a clever collaboration of a different sort had guests buzzing at London’s Design Museum last week.

"Issy never says: ‘You’ve gone too far,’ " said Philip Treacy of his friend and muse, British fashion stylist Isabella Blow. "She always says: ‘You haven’t gone far enough.’ "

An exhibition of Treacy’s crazy head gear, including a piece that resembles an 18th-century French ship, a pink damask papal hat and others with lacquered ostrich feathers and black satin horns, lured Lady Gabriella Windsor, Manolo Blahnik, Mario Testino, Kay Saatchi and Bryan Ferry, many suited up in their wildest best. But Blow’s pink plastic hat trumped all.

"People are trying to kiss her with that on, and they’re all wondering how to get behind the disc," laughed Nadja Swarovski.

A few days earlier, Isabel Goldsmith made a major design statement of her own at a party Zoe Appleyard hosted for her charity, The Life Neurological Research Trust. Goldsmith outbid guests like Boris Becker, Kim and Rob Herzov and Jemma Kidd, paying $48,000 for a navy blue Jaguar designed by Sir Paul Smith.

"I got rather carried away," she said. "I’ve never had a sexy car in my life."