MIXING WITH ARMANI: Nobody has ever accused Samuel L. Jackson of being too conventional. The star of "Pulp Fiction" and the "Star Wars" prequels is a dedicated fan of Armani, and likes the fabrics from the women's collection enough that he's playfully encouraging their use for men's wear. "The funny thing is, Sam is trying to get us to use the materials in the women's collection for the men's — ever since he wore the opalescent purple velvet jacket at Cannes," joked Barry Frediani, senior director of entertainment industry relations for Armani. "I'm trying to get them to use different things," laughed Jackson, who attended an Armani Collezioni event at Neiman Marcus in Beverly Hills on Tuesday evening. "I like brocade, I'm thinking of trying to get them to experiment with a beaded fabric."
Jackson's relationship with the brand started when he wore a white Armani dinner jacket to the "Star Wars: Episode 1 — The Phantom Menace" premiere in 1999. "I wore the sample and loved it, so I kept requesting it again and again. I wanted to keep it; they said they would send the jacket to me at the end of the season, but I still didn't get it," said the actor. (Unfortunately for Jackson, the sample went missing after a photo shoot, Armani reps said.) "The next thing I knew, I had an awesome relationship with them."
MALL AWEARNESS: To celebrate Kenneth Cole New York's Awearness Campaign, the designer held an event last Thursday — at Kenneth Cole New York's Beverly Center mall location in Los Angeles. Celebrities including Gabrielle Union (who came straight from the set of "Ugly Betty," where she, like Cole last year, was a guest star), Audrina Patridge from "The Hills," Kate Mara from "We Are Marshall," Emily VanCamp and Dave Annable from "Brothers & Sisters," Dominic Monaghan from "Lost" and Stacy Keibler shopped (a portion of proceeds go to Kenneth Cole's Awearness fund) and listened to a live acoustic set from crooner Josh Kelley, who wore an Awearness T-shirt .