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NOTABLE ABSENCE: Just where in the world was Adam Lippes Wednesday night? The designer was scheduled to be at Saks Fifth Avenue to speak on the Business of Fashion panel hosted by Saks Fifth Avenue and MasterCard with the Council of Fashion Designers of America (see story, page 15). But it was rumored that night that Lippes pulled out in a snit after Saks dropped his line. Not so, said a Lippes spokesman. “We have pulled the brand from Saks because they were never able to follow through on their word,” the spokesman said. “Now is the right time to focus on our strongest wholesale partnerships.” Saks declined to comment Thursday.