Tamara Beckwith

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About Tamara Beckwith…”…

I am a gallerist, columnist and occasional TV presenter as well as the mother of two gorgeous girls Anouska and Violet.

When I´m not dashing off to some fabulous location on a photoshoot, writing assignment or to attend a friend's event, I am busy juggling work at my photography gallery, The Little Black Gallery in Chelsea, with keeping my Italian husband Giorgio and our three-year-old daughter Violet happy and fed. Writing up the previous evening's adventures is not so easy if I break the cardinal rule of no drinking on a school night!

www.thelittleblackgallery.com

February, 2013

28 February
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The Oscars weekend 2013

Arriving in Los Angeles for the Oscars 2013 weekend is like flying into the eye of a tornado. Novices need not apply! I have covered many Oscars over the years when I lived in LA and so am quite a pro. Even though I am not an actress or involved in the movie business so to speak, everything about the weekend needs military planning – not only organising the dresses and the jewels but also making sure that your name is on endless lists! No name, no entry.

Working hard!

Working hard!

Our first night was mellow as our good friend Richard Sachs, whose houseguest was gallerist Tim Jefferies, had invited us to the brand spanking new Nobu. Everything about it was amazing – the food was superb and our table was right next to a roaring fire. I felt like an excited school girl when I spotted Adele having dinner with her man right next to us. I managed somehow to refrain from going over! Kelsey Grammer and his British blonde were also having a bite – in between lots of cooing…

 

Jared Leto and Terry Richardson ©Billy Farrell

Jared Leto and Terry Richardson at Richard Prince at Gagosian ©BillyFarrell

 

The following night was the opening of the Richard Prince “Cowboy” show at the grand Gagosian Gallery in Beverly Hills. The gallery is enormous (warehouse style) and was absolutely rammed with the bold and the beautiful of LA. Bad boy photographer Terry Richardson, in his trademark flannel shirt, was schmoozing and we said a brief hello to the petite China Chow and actor Jared Leto. Red Hot Chilli Pepper front man Anthony Keidis was seemingly very keen on one of the pieces. We finally found our good friend Giancarlo Giammetti and Tim Jefferies and decided to walk the couple of blocks to the private dinner at Mr Chows. King of the contemporary art world Larry Gagosian is a serious host and had taken over the entire restaurant. It was an amazing group, Mario Testino, Elton John with husband David Furnish and the divine actress Virginia Madsen with our great friend Robert Kass. We squeezed onto the table and met the cool PC Valmorbida (more about him later) and a willowy blonde called Jessica Hart. We ate so many scrumptious dim sum and some nutty noodles! Deciding we couldn’t afford a late night so early in the week, we said our thank yous to Larry and bumped into a very jolly Ronnie Sassoon.

 

Elton John and Terry Richards at Richard Prince at Gagosian ©Billy Farrell

Elton John and Terry Richards at Richard Prince at Gagosian ©Billy Farrell

 

Up bright and early with a touch of jet lag Giorgio and I headed to the beautiful Bel Air hotel where we hiked way up into the hills for a couple of hours! I had promised my great girlfriend, the designer Tracey Ross, that I would swing by her new project as a consultant for “Just One Eye” – the most gorgeous new store in Hollywood. It’s a one-stop store where jewellery and art and serious clothes all mix tantalisingly together. Temptation was everywhere and so I had a quick catch up with LA’s flower genius Eric Butterbaugh who I haven’t seen forever and met the owner of the store Paola Russo. My friend Victoria Hervey was stuck at the decadent desserts and champagne bar or was it the off-the-chart good looking waiters?? Either way, we had to get out fast…

We were being beautifully looked after by team Valentino and their little lunch at Cecconi’s was a chic affair. Normandie Keith has made LA her home and was looking so happy and healthy as she told us she had become a yoga teacher. Alexandra Von Furstenberg also joined us with her fiancé, the dashing Dax Miller. Peggy Segal, the walking who’s who of New York society was in great form as Giancarlo made us make our predictions for the Oscars.

 

 

Alex Von Fursenberg, Valentino, Giancarlo Giammetti and Normandie Keith

Alex Von Furstenberg, Giorgio, Valentino, Giancarlo Giammetti and Normandie Keith at Ceconni’s

One of the most beautiful annual Oscar parties is hosted by producer and media mogul Barry Diller and his wife the designer Diane von Furstenberg. We were taken by team Valentino and luckily for us the sun shone and the legendary BBQ was at its very best. We bumped into many friends and I had a funny chat to Richard Buckley, Tom Ford’s partner, about small children on flights. I deduced their flight over had not been an easy one! Naomi Campbell arrived fresh from her TV show The Face and was saying how great all her girls she is mentoring are. I was rather taken with the beautiful young Australian model Jessica Hart, who turned out to be the squeeze of shipping heir Stavros Niarchos and a Victoria Secret’s model.

Me and Jessica Hart at Barry Diller's picnic

Me and Jessica Hart at Barry Diller’s picnic

Hugh Jackman and his cool wife Debbie were en masse with all their families in tow. He is just so charming and self-effacing, it’s quite incredible. Nona Summers, the legend, was in great form as we chatted about the latest Instagram craziness. British blondes, Laura Bailey and Amanda De Cadenet were enjoying the sun with Livia Firth and I must admit it was quite a treat to see legendary lotharios Warren Beatty and George Hamilton both having fun. Puff Daddy arrived with his bestie Lucas White. The whole afternoon was like a glorious scene out of a movie.

 

Mario Testino and Jessica Hart ©David X Prutting

Mario Testino and Jessica Hart at Prism Gallery ©DavidXPrutting

 

Again we headed home full of fun memories – a quick shower and we were back out for the Mario Testino show at the equally fabulous Prism Gallery. A major shout out to PC Valmorbida and Jared Najjar who own the Gallery. It was brilliant! I have never seen so many gorgeous girls in one room.  Right in the middle, with flashbulbs everywhere, was Mario Testino himself. Supermodels Gisele Bundchen (Mario’s co-host) and Alessandra Ambrosio were zipping around and agent Omar Alberto who is drop dead gorgeous himself was there with LA fixture Todd Gordon and I was just thrilled to see them again. British dandy and fashion editor Hamish Bowles was elegant as ever and my old friend Victoria Brynner was snapping away. Liberty Ross was looking gorgeous and an old favourite Hollywood face of mine, actress Marisa Tomei, was in much demand for private iphone pics. I finally found fellow Brits Victoria Hervey and producer Julia Verdin who had been laden with free tequila! Stavros Niachos and Jessica now in a green lace Valentino jumpsuit were adding some extra sparkle.

 

Amanda de Cadenet and Catrolyn Murphy ©DavidXPrutting

Amanda de Cadenet and Carolyn Murphy at Testino at Prism Gallery ©DavidXPrutting

 

One of my favourite models from the 90’s, Carolyn Murphy, was there and she is breathtakingly beautiful. We bundled Robert Kass into our car and headed to Beverly Hills for the after party. They had taken “Fleur de Lys” (with Equipement and Dom Perignon) the exact replica of Versailles. It’s astonishing and we had been thrown a post-wedding party there by the owner Susanne Sapperstein five years ago. Once inside the party, it was spectacular. Emmanuele Filiberto and his actress wife Clotilde were the first friends we found.

 

Mario Testino, Gisele Bundchen and Tom Brady ©DavidXPrutting

Mario Testino, Gisele Bundchen and Tom Brady at Prism Gallery  ©DavidXPrutting

 

Man-about-town Carlos Souza was flying the Brazilian flag and dancing like crazy. Night club supremo Amy Sacco appeared and we had a laugh about Giorgio’s rather too close for comfort hugging. Singer Miley Cyrus was definitely causing a stir but it was only when Mario took to the dance floor himself with Gisele that the party really took off! When people clocked her football-hero husband Tom Brady, the action near him really heated up. Model Angela Lindvall, another beauty, was trying to shake off some very unwanted attention. Finally for the girls art dealer Vito Schnabel was on hand as was my old friend actor Stephen Dorff. I took one look at my husband who has a slightly innocent crush on the divine model Poppy Delevigne and decided I needed to be firm, or boring as Giorgio refers to it, and head home.

Me and Carlos Souza at Testino dinner ©DavidXPrutting

Me and Carlos Souza at Testino dinner ©DavidXPrutting

All this and we haven’t even got to Oscar night! Exhausted and needing a rejuvenating facial or something, I did my make up one more time. I was wearing an exquisite, beaded Valentino evening gown. I felt a million dollars as we headed to Elton John’s famous Oscar Party. We had only been down the white carpet for a second when I found the legendary make-up artist to girls like Gwen Stefani, Gregory Arlt.  He is a miracle man!

 

Me with Robert Kass and Virginia Madsen at Testino dinner

Me with Robert Kass and Virginia Madsen at Testino dinner

 

Elton and David Furnish have the art of throwing off-the-chart parties down to a fine tee. The whole party was washed over with pink lighting and I was incredibly excited to see Steve Tyler of Aerosmith. Aussie singer Natalie Imbruglia was at producer Diana Jenkins table and there in the middle of all these gorgeous girls was singer Chris Brown. Hollywood screen goddess Sharon Stone looked stunning with her new younger beau. Newly-weds Nick Candy and Holly Valance were in great spirits and she looked really Oscar-special in a Ralph & Russo silver number. I caught sight of Britney Spears and a newly blonde Rose McGowan. By far my favourite introduction was to the amazing photographer Ellen Von Unwerth. She is a classy cool blonde! The entertainment was by Scottish singer Emeli Sandé and she really did rock the room. It was of course supermodel Heidi Klum who stole the body show – four children have come from that tummy and it is perfect. She does Red Carpet glamour incredibly!

 

Me in Valentino with Amanda Eliasch at Elton John's party

Me in Valentino with Amanda Eliasch at Elton John’s party

 

Lastly we were swept off to the afterparty of all afterparties – Madonna‘s. The fabulous Souza boys, Sean and Anthony had been flown in to start the music and we were so excited to see them up on the DJ deck. I was dying to take their photo but was swiftly informed “zero camera tolerance”! The house was beautiful and lit with a thousand twinkling tea lights. The dancing was like I have never seen before. It was wonderfully surreal and as for the rest, my lips are tightly sealed!

Over-the-top spoiling as the whole week has been, I can’t wait to get back to London – my favourite city in the world -and climb into my own bed…

 

18 February
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Ponies, new dinner friends and cool art

Having recovered sufficiently from all of the costume stuff it was with a spring in my step that I hit the Smythson’s tea party – hosted by the somewhat elusive Samantha Cameron and the uber chic and achingly stylish Calgary Avansino. Smythson’s has now opened what I would describe as a mini department store on Sloane Street. The blustery rain didn’t deter the invitees and the poor photographers outside braved the elements and even seemed pretty cheery.  Inside, Samantha Cameron was the perfect hostess, while I spent my whole time sipping amazing green juices. The waiters were definitely all part-time models and were offering  old fashioned treats such as cucumber sandwiches!  Calgary was in a jazzy purple pant suit by Emilia Wickstead – certainly not a onesie for this style icon and former Editor-at-large of Vogue.

 

 

 

Mary Greenwell and Yasmin Mills at Smythson

Mary Greenwell and Yasmin Mills at Smythson

I bumped into Jeans guru Donna Ida (one of our brilliant clients at the gallery) and I had a quick girlie catch up with the divine make-up queen Mary Greenwell and Yasmin Mills. Alice Naylor Leyland and her sidekick Astrid Harbord, both naughty girls about town, kept me busy and tried hard to stop me going on a shopping frenzy!  Alex Shah from Premier was escorting the lovely Francesca Versace, who was showing off her new line of handbags. I left having fallen in love with so many little leather goodies and so was thrilled to be handed one of their famous sky blue bags with a wonderful set of notes as a gift.

 

 

Vivi riding in Richmond Park

Vivi riding in Richmond Park ©TamaraBeckwith

The weekend ahead I had planned as a family affair and was very excited at the thought. My sister had smartly booked all the girls a riding lesson at the fabulous Stag Lodge stables in Richmond Park.  Violet and her cousins Amber and Tatum were totally oblivious to the swamp-like conditions the ponies were trekking through.  To warm us all up afterwards, we had a good hearty pub lunch at The Fox and Grapes on Wimbledon Common – just what the doctor ordered.

 

 

One of the pictures from the Privatus Warhol show

One of the pictures from the Privatus Warhol show

Straight back to all things of an arty persuasion – a dinner held at the very smart and discreet Privatus (co-owned by Mark Brooke) in Mayfair for the hugely collectable Andy Warhol polaroid show.  I felt a huge dose of flu coming on but I hate cancelling a sit-down dinner after midday – it’s one of my little rules.  The show of Warhol photographs was everything I could have hoped for and Dean and Dan (the designer twins for their brand D Squared) had already chosen a couple for their own collection.  I particularly liked a self portrait of Warhol eating a banana – I’ll leave that to your imagination!

Me with Yasmin Mills, Heather Kerzner, Melissa Odabash and Loree Rodkin

Me with Yasmin Mills, Heather Kerzner, Melissa Odabash and Loree Rodkin

Swimwear aficionado Melissa Odabash was there in one of her little black creations, and my old friend jewellery rockstar Loree Rodkin was showing off her hand of precious knuckleduster diamond scattered rings.  She and Daphne Guinness must be some of the only girls I know who can really carry off one on each finger.  I was so thrilled to have not one, but two fabulous previously unmet dinner companions – that really is a result!  One being the huge British movie producer Jeremy Thomas (The Last Emperor, The Dreamers, Crash) who was enchanting and I could have happily been left alone with him for hours, such was his knack with an anecdote.

Warhol's picture of Valentino

Warhol’s picture of Valentino

 

To my right I was lucky enough to have the musician and film scorer Christopher Taylor – we found an immediate bond, us both having four-year-old treasured daughters.  Schlepping to a dinner alone can sometimes be a travesty but, in this case, my night was a triumph.  I also managed to only consume one glass of wine, as I knew I would otherwise get carried away and buy myself the Valentino polaroid which hung dangerously close in front of me!

 

 

Grace, Belgravia

Grace, Belgravia

The next day, having joined the most outrageous new all-women health and beauty club called Grace in Belgravia, I finally found my way to their Matt Roberts gym.  Duncan, my assigned personal trainer, was exactly what I needed from a gym motivator – all sinewy muscle, he certainly looks as though he practises what he preaches. I am a tad jaded by trainers as I have never been a keen, or willing, gym bunny, however, the hour whizzed by.  On questioning why there were no clocks in the gym, I was told that it’s against Matt Roberts’ ethos to not have their clients clock-watching – maybe they’re onto something!  I skipped out feeling pretty well-stretched and clasping a green concoction with promise of a new healthy Tamara.

 

 

Me with Tyler Urdell (centre) and his boyfriend Cole (left)

Me with Tyler Udall (centre) and his boyfriend Cole (left)

To finish off my week I had the very talented Tyler Udall’s opening show at my gallery. My business partner Ghislain Pascal and I were so thrilled to have got him in the first place – he is a well-respected member of the cool gang as ex-fashion editor of Dazed & Confused and Another Man. He is so removed from Chelsea it’s not funny.  He arrived with his agent, Peter Halpert Hay, and very handsome boyfriend Cole.  The gallery had never had so many new and unfamiliar faces, Tyler’s photography is very stark and, dare I say it, bares a slight nod to the hardcore photographer Juergen Teller.

 

The easy-on-the-eye gentleman at Tyler Udall's event

The easy-on-the-eye gentleman at Tyler Udall’s event

 

The opening caused much amusement to our guests and neighbours as we had two rather gorgeous hunks in our window – making it feel more like an Abercrombie & Fitch party than an art opening! Rob Van Helden and hubbie Sebastian Barbareal arrived and we were keen to discuss the upcoming Oscars week where I am heading next week.

12 February
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Pirates, Diamonds and Warhol

My 4-year-old’s pirate party consumed most of the week as I wanted it to be entirely over-the-top, crazy fun. I had invited her whole class (big mistake) and various good friends’ children. PR queen Jenny Halpern Prince’s twin girls are great pals of Vivi’s as is Tim Jefferies little Swedish doll, Coco.  I had decided to utilise our dear Priest Father Ronald’s good nature and hired out Brompton Oratory’s St Joseph Hall.  A wonderful, slightly tired room with double height ceilings. No chance of any of us feeling cramped!  Party entertainer George came as a wicked slightly scary pirate and had the kids hiding in parachutes and screaming for mercy in no time. Violet had decided she wanted a pirate party rather than a princess theme… not sure what that spells for the future. Little Amadeus Becker came in a beautiful costume and was more intrigued with the helium balloons than anything else. Oh and my rather random inflatable palm tree complete with parrot. My father came with his lovely girlfriend Vivien and my sister Clare’s beautiful girls were dressed as wonderful Peter-Pan-style Lost Boys. Poor Father Ronald popped in for a tea and I think was quite happy to see the hall so full of happy, crazy little pirates. Vivi’s Dragon Chocolate cake – made by the one and only Armine at The Chelsea Cake was gobbled up so fast I think I only got a spoonful. Clearing up when all the kids had been picked up was quite another story but I can hand on heart say the hall was certainly left in far more sparkling form than when I found it.

 

 

Dressing up at Vivi's party!

Dressing up at Vivi’s party! ©TamaraBeckwith

 

The party certainly set a precedent for dressing up, as on the Tuesday night Giorgio and I had to be Pop Art characters for our dear friend Giancarlo Giammetti’s Birthday. He is one of the best dressed men ever so there is no hope of getting away with a mere token gesture. It requires full on revelry and he and Valentino were hardly going to not notice a lack of effort! My great girlfriend Emma Gold, Event Director of GSP had been given a lightning two weeks to whip up a party to be really talked about. Giancarlo and his crew are sticklers for detail and they adore a party. The night was rainy and we were all a bit glum until we entered the immaculate reincarnation of 60’s Warhol.

 

giancarlo-tamara-beckwith

Giancarlo Giammetti and me (with Les Mis star Eddie Redmayne in the background)

 

Amazing Warholesque pink, blue and green flower stickers were casually clustered on the marble floor. A pink hue washed the fabulous walls of Giancarlo’s home. Warhol images blown up full size were just the detail for us all to feel like a time machine had whizzed us back to the 60’s. Pretty waiters and waitresses were in fabulous themed costumes and a couple of cheeky girls were in super skimpy numbers with old school cigarette trays filled with extra party favours: sequinned masks, fruit-flavoured faux cigarettes…the mind boggled at the attention to detail.

Giancarlo Giammetti with friends

Princess Maria-Olympia of Greece with Giancarlo Giammetti and friends

Our Birthday boy was cool as ever with a Lichtenstein eye design and a raspberry moire evening jacket by Tom Ford, simply adorned with a POW! Hands down newlyweds Anne Hathaway and her husband Adam won the competition for the most outrageous but brilliant outfit, as matching bananas… Anne had to explain to me it was a nod to the Velvet Underground album cover! She is one of their most treasured girls and she was on bubbling form. Fresh from all the excitement of copious nominations in the heady awards season she had flown in from LA just that day.

Adam Shulman, Valentino and Anne Hathaway

Adam Shulman, Valentino and Anne Hathaway

Fashionista and Spanish aristo, Naty Abascal, was just in heaven in vintage Oscar de la Renta couture frock from 1967. Her hair was bouffed to perfection and her eyelashes practically required scaffolding. The actress Andrea Riseborough was also on tip-top form and I was dying to hear who had designed her dress for her win the night before at the Evening Standard Awards. It was a knockout Jenny Packham - just dreamy. Tom Ford arrived with his darling partner Richard in head-to-toe black, holding a can of Campbell soup. I think that could be cheating a little…

Anne Hathaway and Valentino

Anne Hathaway and Giancarlo Giammetti


Princess Marie Chantal
was a dead ringer for a blonde Jackie Kennedy and her beautiful daughter Princess Maria-Olympia was fretting about homework and a play the following day at school. Charlotte Dellal (of Charlotte Olympia shoe fame) looked totally at ease with her perfect blonde waves. She has a natural period look about her. The whole party was verging on naughty as the porn-star cocktails and coloured flutes of champagne began to work their mischief. Fashion guru Suzy Menkes was in her element and she too seemed to fit rather well into the theme.

Cameron Diaz and Giorgio

Cameron Diaz and Giorgio

Valentino, as always, had tweaked the theme to suit his own personal style of deadpan chic. It was left to Carlos Souza to whip us all onto the dance floor and dance like dervishes. Actress and comedienne Chelsea Handler seemed to require very little encouragement with her beau Hotelier Andre Balzas. My Giorgio fell in love at first sight with the blonde bombshell Cameron Diaz who,I must grudgingly admit, in the flesh is just as gorgeous as on the screen! To report everything that took place would take too long and spill too many beans but it was truly a night to remember. Due to the strength of the cocktails all I have to say is thank goodness for photos!!

 

Holly Candy, Lisa Snowdon and Mark Foster at The Little Black Gallery

Holly Candy, Lisa Snowdon and Mark Foster at The Little Black Gallery

 

Finally, my week drew to a close with the delicious Lisa Snowdon hosting a wonderful, if slightly raucous, soiree at my gallery, The Little Black Gallery, with Laurie Wickwire of The Berkley Diamond Group. It coincided with our closing of the very successful Bruno Bisang show. Us girls were all lucky enough to be adorned in their fabulous jewels which of course were cruelly removed from our wrist’s, lobes and necks before we headed off into the night. Designers Melissa Odabash and Julien MacDonald were back which was a lovely surprise and the handsome swimmer Mark Foster came and decided to keep his black trench coat firmly on. He was a huge hit with all the females and was in much demand for pictures.

 

tam-mcdonald-obedash

Me, Julien Macdonald and Melissa Odabash at The Little Black Gallery

 

Singer Laura Wright treated us to a magical performance. Whilst the Beckers, Boris and his lovely wife Lilly swooped by on the way to his eldest son Noah’s DJ spot at The W Hotel much later that night. I had every intention of trying to make it but a whole night of meeting and greeting finally gets to you and I was on my merry way home by a conservative 10pm… So much for when the husbands away the wife will play!! I think a quiet weekend beckons…

04 February
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A Valentino paradise in Paris!

If there has been one treat I have been privy to, it’s being invited to the Haute Couture shows in Paris. For those women who don’t care about the frivolous world of fashion, I get it. But for those of us who drool and gasp as each creation wafts down the catwalk, I can think of no greater indulgence. As soon as the stiffest of the stiff Invitations are hand delivered you get a childish excitement in sheer anticipation. This year I was off to see the genius pair Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli at Valentino with my beautiful daughter Anouska who lives, works and breathes Paris. It is one of our shared guilty pleasures. I had to fly to Orly which was a super pleasant experience as I normally get to Paris via Eurostar. With only my hand luggage and a bag full of late Christmas presents for Noushy, I was in and out of the airport in record time.

 

Me, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli

Me, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli

 

I soon arrived at the Valentino HQ – a small slice of paradise in itself – and was whisked off to play with rail upon rail of chiffon, georgette, silk and embroidered delights, all of which you must fit into. This is the only incentive I have to stay somewhat in shape.  World Brand Ambassador, Carlos Souza – one of the most handsome and chic men on the planet – has been one of my pin-ups for the last 14 years and he is of course bonkers naughty. We have had so much fun over the years that he seems like family. He is always brutally truthful about what suits you or not, and as I squished my Christmas-bottom into various ensembles, I caught on fast that I was not going to be an exception to this rule! So many bags and shoes, it was like a girl’s dream come true! He chose a beautiful pared-down, nude ensemble for Anouska and I was off again.

 

A beautiful Valentino shoe

Beautiful Valentino shoes

 

My girlfriend, Sara Colombo, was out shopping and finding treasures for her sensational home store in Miami called Nest. She used to live in Paris as a model and so hits the city by foot and is happy finding new little places. She was, however, off-course and ended up in Lanvin on Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honore. This was not a good place for us to meet. I knew it was a dangerous idea and sure enough within 20 minutes the two of us had bought a few goodies each that the genius sales assistant Dorian Mezzasoma had packaged up and snuck our credit cards away for. Just like that. We then headed to a little frou frou French café for tea and macaroons.

 

Anouska and Gigi in her Paris apartment

Anouska and Gigi in her Paris apartment

 

 

I was staying at Anouska’s apartment and so collected all my bits and headed to Le Marais where she lives with her little pooch Gigi. It was so lovely to be treated as a mummy and be made fresh herbal tea and looked after like a guest. Anouska, on the whole, leads a very Parisian-style life and avoids all the obvious fashiony places like the plague, so she had been in charge of booking dinner. A Japanese place called Yen apparently was our destination. I am not a hardcore sushi fan so in all fairness the incredible menu was a bit lost on me, but delicious it definitely was. Sara and I seemed to have got a bit lost with our French translations and ended up with rather gargantuan amounts of tempura but we had a delicious supper and had a few sneaky glasses of sake. Looking at the watch, I decided against joining Anouska’s group and headed on home.

 

More Valentino treasures!

More Valentino treasures!

 

Wandering around the galleries in Paris is one of my favourite hobbies as it helps with fresh ideas for my own Gallery. I took off to find a slip to wear under my divine cream Valentino dress coat which Carlos had instructed me to find and Noushy had work to do. So off I went, only, of course, to get a little lost and then four hours later be in a terrible flap to be ready for the show at 6pm. We emerged from her apartment looking and feeling prepped and ready for some high octane glamour. Our blacked-out car gave the impression we had a car-full but it was just to be the two of us. We arrived to a scrum of photographers all jostling outside the iron gates of Hotel Salomon de Rothschild. The building was just so beautiful and the candles lit the red carpet perfectly. Once inside we were kissed carefully by Carlos and then photos duly followed. Inside the gilded rooms with the most beautifully painted ceilings, we found the real King of Couture, Valentino Garavani himself, flanked as always by the equally suave Giancarlo Giammetti. I was thrilled to see them as we had not seen each other since before Christmas. Just being in their presence makes you stand properly, hold your tummy in and smile slightly more sweetly!

 

Hamish Bowles looking dapper

Hamish Bowles looking dapper

 

Livia Firth was already on her prized front row seat with Franca Sozzani of Italian Vogue right beside her. British model Tallulah Harlech and Greek-American It girl Eugenie Niarchos were flying the younger generations flag. More interestingly, we were almost diagonally across form the fierce glare of Anna Wintour which was a treat in itself. Hamish Bowles just is fashion… A glamourous Italian Movie star arrived in the new apple green lace for Spring/Summer 2013 and I must say it was fabulous. Natalia Vodianova (the world’s favourite model) snuck in, looking her usual nonchalant chic self in a tapestry inspired evening coat.  The show was a hit and even Valentino applauded a few of his favourite dresses. I could go on about how thin and lank the girls were but that’s just how it is. Model of the moment Cara Delevigne was perky and pretty and I marvelled at the lack of calves any of these little creatures have!

 

Suzy Menkes, Giancarlo Giammetti and Franca Sozzani

Suzy Menkes, Giancarlo Giammetti and Franca Sozzani

 

We had to wriggle backstage as I was dying to congratulate Maria and Pierpaolo and we did quite a speedy job of it! We left and headed straight for the Plaza Athenee where we were met with a glass of champagne with crushed strawberry. We had an hour to kill before we headed back to Giancarlo’s private after-show dinner. You know never to eat before one of his suppers as the food is sooo naughty and totally unavoidable! Sitting looking over the River Seine view with Suzy Menkes (the other important lady in fashion!) was just heaven. Valentino was in high spirits, as was boy-about-town Derek Blasberg who entertained everyone with his personal Americana wit. Another hard night with the Valentino crew!!

 

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