Monthly Archives: May 2011

It is striking that in the various profiles and news reports that have been written in the past few weeks about Mario Draghi, governor of the Bank of Italy and just-nominated European Central Bank chieftain – at least until he got knocked off the front page by that other head of a three-letter financial institution, Dominique Strauss-Kahn of the IMF – pretty much all of them mention his dress sense and then attribute it to his nationality.

How quickly a garment can turn against us. In the absence of any information other than rumour and old gossip, one of the leading characters in the drama that has been the arrest and arraignment of former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn over the last few days has been…his black overcoat. Silent but symbolically potent, it has proven of great descriptive use, it seems, to the myriad reporters covering the story and charged with spinning it to a voracious public.


In the rapt-making interview that was yesterday’s Oprah-meets-Ralph-Lauren-in-Telluride show one admission stood out a mile: Mr Lauren’s sense that he is “an assistant to Obama.”

And so the Queen has come to Ireland for the first time in almost 60 years — and she has done so in her usual, thought-through finery.


And so the long, drawn-out — what? season? wardrobe filler? money-spinner? — that is cruise (or should we call it resort, or spring, the way brands do?) begins. Oscar de la Renta kicked it all off yesterday with a straightforward, ladies-and-girls-who-lunch show in their unfinished new office digs on 42nd street and Fifth avenue.  

If last week saw creative directors playing musical chairs, with Hannah MacGibbon out at Chloe, to be replaced by Pringle’s ex Clare Waight Keller, and Patrick Robinson dumped by the Gap, today it looks like it’s corporate’s turn. British accessory success story Anya Hindmarch has announced a new CEO, its first outside exec ever, in the form of James McArthur, while at Boucheron PPR says Jean-Christophe Bedos is being replaced by Pierre Bouissou, who left as managing director of rival LVMH’s Berluti last year.

South Korea has a dismal reputation on animal rights. Filthy, unregulated farms where dogs are slaughtered for their meat and black bears are tapped alive for their bile are harrowing yet widely tolerated. 

The Cannes Film Festival has had its first few star-studded days yet it seems to me that the most pressing question thrown up thus far is not which movie will win the Palme d’Or. Nor is it what fabulous series of dresses jury member Uma Thurman is wearing on the red carpet or even how the restored version of A Clockwork Orange is received, but rather: is Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, first lady of France, pregnant?

Watching “L’Amour Fou”, the documentary about Yves Saint Laurent, Pierre Berge, and the $484 million sale of their stuff that opens today in theatres in the US, it’s hard not to think about John Galliano, and his rather spectacular implosion last March. indeed, it’s hard not to think that this film is as much about eulogising an era that is no more — that of the designer as monstre sacre — as a relationship. Or maybe they are one and the same?


St John, the upscale but staid US woman’s brand that specializes in knitwear, has just released the first pictures of British actress Kate Winslet in their autumn/winter ad campaign. They are nice — she looks kind of old-sat glam in an old-style movie theatre — but it’s nevertheless a surprising combination. The question is, when it goes wide, will it be surprising in a good way (wow! Makes me rethink this label!) or a bad one (doesn’t make sense?!).