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TALKING JAMES: The Costume Institute's "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" exhibition has been open since May 8. Now, the Metropolitan Museum of Art is providing another insight into the designer's life and work. Today, it is launching the special online audio feature "Recalling Charles James." Alina Cho interviewed Elsa Peretti, Christophe de Menil, R. Couri Hay, Paul Caranicas, Mary Ellen Hecht, Elizabeth Strong-Cuevas, as well as James' last assistant Homer Lane for the audio feature, which is filled with anecdotes that provide many new facets to the designer. "He was pretty dictatorial," de Menil recalled. "He would tear apart whatever was there…and do it again on the spot.
Hecht, meanwhile, also pointed to James' perfectionism. "If you’re talking about personality, Charlie could be really very difficult to be with," she said. "He was a pain in the bottom. If the pin is a quarter of a centimeter not where he wanted, all of the pins in that line came out and were replaced."