News & Scoops

2009 November 6

Italians Who Lunch

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A Kenneth Jay Lane brooch, $290 A Kenneth Jay Lane brooch, $290
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(NEW YORK) For the time being, Federico Marchetti does not speak English--although one might assume that the Yoox founder and CEO's linguistic skills might come flooding back in the next several weeks. Regardless, the etailing pioneer commandeered the private room at La Grenouille this afternoon to toast collaborator Deanna Farnetti Cera, whose extraordinary private collection of costume jewelry goes on sale at today. Her new tome, Coppola e Toppo: Fashion Jewels, will also be sold on the site. "It was flown straight to New York from the printers in China," she told the très intime group of Mark Holgate, Brooke Magnaghi, Jackie Astier, Horacio Silva, and assorted others.

While conversation was strictly off-the-record, suffice it to say that it was one of the most informed, animated discussions on the current state of Italian fashion that guests has witnessed in recent memory. Armani, Aquilano.Rimondi, Franco Pene, Matteo Marzotto, Marco Zanini...each subject was just as delicious as the endive and pear salad. Even the lemon-doused salmon! The petit madelaines, however, were hard to beat.

Cera discussed her eternal quest to secure more worthy pieces. "Someone important enough here should put together an exhibition called 'American Splendor,'" she declared in the second (or was it third?) toast of the afternoon. "And I say splendor because of the sparkle! America has the best costume jewelry heritage in the world. If you want French pieces, come to America. If you want German or Austrian pieces, come to America." "We don't have any left, because you have it all!" interjected Yoox's vintage director Holly Brubach, laughing. "But we are very grateful."

Those angling to buy back some of Cera's best pieces can find them on Thirty baubles ranging from $200 to $3,000 will be up for grabs, including a Kenneth Jay Lane necklace set of faux faceted rubies and rhinestones as well as a Ugo Correani for Karl Lagerfeld ruffled cuff bangle. Lunch not included.

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