CRYSTAL CLEAR: Angelenos, refreshed from a summer-long break at the beach, kicked off fall at the Beverly Hills opening of Maison Martin Margiela, which drew a mix of artsy and industry folk. "I was in dread mode," said Crystal Lourd of having to resume the party circuit after a summer off, "but it was such a cool party, with different people." To wit, there was nary a movie star to be seen. "It certainly doesn't feel like L.A.," said Shiva Rose McDermott over the beat of the African drummers. Guests also donned edgy gear in black and white, but, in keeping with the maison's white and silver decor, only clear liquids were served.
BLASS BLAST: Robert D'Loren, chief executive officer of NexCen Brands Inc., which owns the Bill Blass brand, said at the Blass presentation event Thursday that he's been busy logging miles from store to store talking to everyone and anyone regarding Blass. On the agenda are new Blass licensees for handbags and accessories, as well as a Blass men's line, all of which are expected to come to fruition in 90 days, D'Loren said. Arnold Simon, who has the Blass denim license, also is keeping a hectic schedule: He's gearing up to launch his Members Only label, which is set to hit high-end specialty stores such as Fred Segal and Scoop in fall 2008. According to Simon, the label will feature both men's and women's offerings, with outerwear starting at $300.
OHHHMMMM: Fashion week is far from relaxing for most retail buyers. Not so for the folks from Saks Fifth Avenue. Midday Wednesday, the entire accessories team began a pilgrimage from the tents to the Shambhala Meditation Center of New York. A three-hour session, called "The Power of the Positive Question," provided a reflective calm, but, according to fashion director of accessories Beth Kante, the biggest question on everybody's mind was what outfit could take the crew from runway to relaxation and back again.