July 14th 2011, London: Pixie Lott is wearing a white lace gown and sipping her drink with friends, David Gandy is talking to Yuri, I am distracted by my bow tie on my iphone's face-to-face, I am not sure about it, but Simona, the head of PR at Dolce&Gabbana reassures me: "You look hot".
This bow-tie made me nervous
Yuri Ahn wants me to wear a bow tie "Our boss has an extra one, blue with white polka-dots, it will look great with your suit". "How about my sneakers? Too much?" "You're crazy, I love you". We are sitting in her lovely hotel room in Gloucester - it smells like cigarettes, I light one up and try to decide on a lipstick for her. "I think I prefer lip gloss" she says while I am zipping the back of her foulard print corset. Yuri is wearing heels that are at least seven inches, I really don't know how she keeps her balance on those things, there is no time, the phone rings, the car is down waiting for us. I check myself in the mirror and think that I don't look so bad after all, in any case everyone else would be much better looking at the event.
The middle-aged British driver is nosy, he keeps asking stuff: "Are you going to something important?" "Actually, yes - explains Yuri - there is a party for the launch of Dolce&Gabbana on Mr Porter and Net-a-Porter".
"You are going to a show!"
"No sir, it's a party, Net-a-Porter and Mr Porter are online shops, you know on the internet"
"Hmm, I don't know much about those things, my children..."
I look out and London is magnicent and luminous, people are crowding the pubs and the streets holding their beers. It's almost dawn, about 8 pm.
Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce with Natalie Massenet, Queen Latifah and Naomi Campbell
Standing on top of the escalator that takes us from the first floor of Westfield's shopping center to the party, I can see huge star lights, I think in honour of Dolce&Gabbana's last show that Natalie Massenet, the founder of Net-a-porter, will be selling in her boutique. Tony Ward is here obviously, looking his scruffy best. I decide to ignore him, actually he does that himself. I immediately click with the bubbly Jeremy Langmead, Mr Porter's editor and our host.
Benedetta, Dolce&Gabbana's pr, looks amazing in sequin pants and ipertech accessories, a sort of walkie talkie like the one from Lara Croft, walking her way from the atrium to the party. There are two bars and a dozen waiters carrying Italian canapés, gallons of champagne, I grab myself a flute immediately and chat with some Milanese friends. Giula, the digital pr, is freaking hot, in Italian "una gran gnocca" as some of my friends would say.
The music is still low, you can see the office desks on the back: it makes me wonder a bit but after all I have to admit it's pretty original to have the party in their offices, obviously done for the occasion and somewhat a metaphor of the fashion system: you never know where your job ends and your private life begins. Bernadette, bleached hair, a man's suit, black wayfarer sunglasses with hints of purple, lace around her collar, works for our digital marketing team: she looks like the Matrix, love it.
Pixie Lott in Dolce&Gabbana
Pixie Lott is wearing a white lace gown and sipping her drink with friends, David Gandy is talking to Yuri, I am distracted by my bow tie on my iphone's face-to-face, I am not sure about it, but Simona, the head of PR at Dolce&Gabbana reassures me: "You look hot". I decide it must be true or at least I decide to believe it is.
The Ferry Brothers
That girl must be Kelly Osbourne, a blonde coming out of the Italian photocall: two 60s Vespas parked in front of a panoramic view, a fan blowing away the clothes (and hairdos) of the guests going for the picture in sets of two, the night's keepsake. Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana arrive, the party is very crowded and everyone is very curious: it's full of bloggers tweetting or putting up posts on their pages. Colin McDowell is chatting with Valentina who just interviewed her for Swide. Mr McDowell curated an exhibit on Italian stylde just recently in London.
Kelly Osbourne in Dolce&Gabbana and Douglas Booth
"I need to smoke" I think while I totally pretend to be interested in a conversation two guys are having in very tight English, impossible for me to follow. I grab Dennis, my boss - who fortunately is just nearby. He is pointing at Pixie Geldof wearing micro leopard, (she is so cool), and hanging out with Peaches covered in sequin. "Dennis, I need to go for a smoke, save me from these two".
Alexandra Burke and Jamie Winestone in Dolce&Gabbana
You can smoke on the terrace, that's exactly what I decide to do non-stop. It's not dark yet, the sun is not coming down in East London. I think Dennis should be more aware of his sex appeal, I tell him that. "He has nothing on you": Toby Kebbel's long beard and recognizable laugh is right next to us, followed obviously by a herd of women totally falling under his spell. The second vodka tonic was a bit rough (I did enjoy the lime though), I think it better not to drink more. Dennis definitely forgives me and looks at me as if I am a bit drunk: I get the message.
David Gandy suited and booted with Yuri Ahn
Finally the music is on, Yuri is talking with bloggers, I see Prince Cassius' funky-chic hair above the crowd: I hug my Facebook friend. I am not sure about Jaime Winstone's shoes, I like her best with dark hair, not sure I want to tell her that though: I might get her crochet clutch straight on my face. I decide on a conversation with Camille Adomakoh from Style Karma, she is a genius contributor for Swide, she tells me loads on what's going on in London : "Giuliano you must come back to London without these serious clothes on, I need to take you out". "Sure, Camille, you are totally right, but see I kept my Nike Dunks on".
David Gandy stealing the show (my colleague Giulia shines brightly)
I see Sebastian Sauve from a distance, he is everywhere - he must have twin brothers spread around the world - he is as tall as I am, so not difficult to get each other's attention. He points at Naomi Campbell talking with Domenico and Stefano, then the photographers get to her. I tell her "bacio-ciao-amore-ciao" and feed myself with crumpets, I feel like I am starving, must be from all the alcohol. Patrick Grant, he is so stylish: both photographers and bloggers can't help but take tons of pictures of him. The Venetian lamps of Net-a-porter's office look very Dolce&Gabbana, I get close to Chandni and Ruth, our pr in London, they are tonight's queen bees.
I am a bit envious of their ability to take charge at social events, I share this with Dennis "I am totally incapable of control in these situations". Dennis gives me a pat and abandons me. Very Brit Celebrities: Alexandra Burke and Douglas Booth are here, I just realize. I might try to forgive myself for it.
Sebastian Sauve with Yuri Ahn Scooting off into the sunset.
I catch Yuri who is still looking fantastic on her heels, she even manages couple of dance moves, she is talking with Stefano Gabbana, I peruse the room for Domenico and find him talking with two enthusiastic beauties, obviously flustered to meet such a great designer in person. The music turns 70s, everything looks like part of a same wave, people dancing, chatting, doing pr. I smile at our hosts Natalie Massenet and Jeremy Langmead, they look so perfect and confident.
I think I catch a glimpse of Isaac Ferry but I am not sure it's actually him. I grab another vodka tonic and start planning on my mini-Tesco sandwich stop right down by my hotel at Gloucester. God save the Queen, London, and Net-a-porter.
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Written by Giuliano Federico