DRESS, AND REPEAT: Carla Bruni-Sarkozy selected a white cashmere cocktail dress by Dior for the official Bastille Day parade in Paris on Tuesday. But a change of dress for the Elysée garden party proved that, rather like another high-profile First Lady, Bruni-Sarkozy is no prisoner of the latest season or wearing the same dress twice. The fashion icon changed into a déjà vu monochrome dress from Chanel’s 2008-’09 cruise collection that she wore to a Hadassah fund-raiser in Paris this March.
TALK TO THE HAND: “You used to go to see Christian Dior in Paris to have a dress made, but now you can go to Roland Mouret in your hand,” said Natalie Massenet, the founder of Net-a-porter.com at the launch of the NET-APP iPhone application at the Apple Store on Regent Street in London on Tuesday. “I thought Natalie was crazy when she first came to speak to me about Net-a-porter and now I realize that I was the crazy one,” said Mouret during a discussion with Massenet about the evolution of fashion and technology. Their conversation will be available to download from net-a-porter.com next week. The NET-APP is updated with new products and content every Monday and Wednesday, and allows customers to buy from the site without having to reenter their payment details. “This is taking multitasking to the next level. Women can now shop anywhere on the fly,” said Massenet.
TOLEDO GETS FOLKSY: Isabel Toledo’s crackerjack year is still gaining momentum. Michelle Obama’s go-to designer for the inaugural will be celebrated by The American Folk Art Museum at a July 22 benefit at trustee Stephen Corelli’s TriBeCa pad. Meanwhile, “Isabel Toledo: Fashion From the Inside Out” has been reeling in the crowds even on Saturdays and Tuesday afternoons, which are not exactly prime time for museum outings in the summer. Many are in search of the showstopper — the First Lady’s lemongrass-hued ensemble that Toledo designed. “It’s like Mecca. Everyone wants to see it,” said the museum’s deputy director Patricia Mears.
TAKE A HIKE: Oscar de la Renta’s pitchman Paul O’Regan will be tackling something far more daunting than any fashion editor this month — Mount Kilimanjaro. O’Regan and friends Anton Kaszubowski and Semjon von Doenhoff will be making the trek in Tanzania to raise awareness and money for Charity: Water, which builds freshwater wells. Their goal is to raise $1 for every foot of Kilimanjaro, which is 19,340 feet. In doing so, they would be able to provide 2,000 people with clean drinking water for 20 years, O’Regan said via e-mail. Well aware that any good executive is never truly out of touch, O’Regan journey will be chronicled at charitywater.org/pages/climbingkilimanjaro.
HERRERA LANDS IN LONDON: Carolina Herrera is the latest fashion label to launch on Mount Street. In early September, the brand plans to open a 1,900-square-foot store at 120 Mount Street that will carry all of the collections. The Mayfair street is already home to brands including Lanvin, Marc Jacobs, Annick Goutal, Christian Louboutin, and Stephen Webster, who cut the ribbon on his store earlier this week. Goyard, meanwhile, will open its first stand-alone unit outside Paris on Mount Street later this summer.
INDIAN SUMMER: Jewelry designer Marie-Hélène de Taillac will pay homage to Jaipur — her base in India for the past 12 years — in an upcoming exhibition at Paris’ Le Bon Marché department store. For “Love from Jaipur,” running Nov. 14 to Dec. 31, de Taillac has gathered a range of stylish items by contemporary Indian designers, including glitter coats by Namrata Joshipura; jewel-embroidered tops by Rabani & Rakha, frocks by Varun Sardana and a dress and matching bags by Manish Arora. A selection of India-themed goodies by de Taillac will also be available, such as cashmere boleros, monogram travel bags and stationery.
GOOD DAY SUNSHINE: The weather gods smiled upon David Yurman Tuesday night as the designer hosted his annual summer rooftop soiree at the firm’s TriBeCa offices. Fans of the brand mingled in the setting sun along with the Yurmans, whose latest addition, granddaughter Cody, was the subject of much cooing from guests. When asked how he was enjoying his summer, the jewelry designer laughed and pointed to the east side. “Summer is that way,” he said, gesturing towards his new home on Long Island. “We just have to figure out how to air condition it. Other than that, I’m just chasing my horses around as usual.”
ERDEM DRESSES SMYTHSON: Following a successful collaboration with Giles Deacon earlier this year, Smythson has called on Erdem Moralioglu, who designs under the label Erdem, to create a collection of notebooks and diaries for the fall. The Turkish-British designer, known for his whimsical watercolor prints, has covered Smythson’s leather-bound notebooks in abstract floral prints taken from his 2010 resort collection. The books feature orchids, poinsettias and geraniums in a palette of cornelian, white and midnight blue. “The collection is about Japonism, but a kind of Japonism décontracté,” said Moralioglu. “It was before a trip I took to Japan so I was kind of channeling something of what I dreamed it would be like.” The collection, which goes on sale in November, will also include the 2010 Panama and Soho diaries bound in cream leather with an illustrated look from the designer’s fall collection on the cover. Prices are yet to be confirmed.
BRITS MARCH ON PARIS: The largest-ever group of British fashion houses will stage exhibitions during the Paris ready-to-wear collections as part of the Carrousel de la Mode — and they’re even getting their own Web site. UK Fashion Exports, the trade association that offers practical help to exporters, has set up a dedicated Web site, ukfashionexports.com/britsinparis, for international retailers and press interested in buying British. The site will go live at the end of July and carry images of the 150 collections on show as well as a map illustrating the locations of the British designers’ stands. Labels including Rupert Sanderson, Avsh Alom Gur, The Jacksons and La Petite Salope are among the 150 companies exhibiting in September.
COS LANDS IN SPAIN: COS, the high-end clothing and accessories line from Hennes & Mauritz, will open a 6,460-square-foot, two-story store on Barcelona’s Paseo de Gracia in October, the brand’s first location in Spain. Paseo de Gracia is known for its luxury boutiques, and labels including Chanel, Jimmy Choo and Burberry all have stores on the street.
“Spain and Barcelona mark a noteworthy step in our expansion and…complement our current stores and markets,” said Pernilla Wohlfahrt, brand director at COS. COS, which is known for its spare, simple designs, has 16 stores in countries including the U.K., Germany, France and Denmark. The label, which launched in 2007 with a store on Regent Street in London, also is expected to open four stores in existing markets in the fall.