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2010 July 6

Live from Couture: Raise Your Hand if You're Here!

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Grace Coddington, Anna Wintour Grace Coddington, Anna Wintour
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(PARIS) After this HR-heavy summer, the front row will never look the same. (And the changes are far from finished!) Naturally, Monday's Dior spectacular kicked off the couture season while providing us with a taste of what's to come in September (and beyond).

Stefano Tonchi attended his very first major show as W’s EIC. His deputy Lynn Hirschberg also fled 750 Third Avenue, where the September issue is quietly gearing into ship mode, once again joining Tonchi in Paris this season. (Pauvre Armand, back au bureau!) Because Roger Federer lost to this Berdych dude at the Wimbledon quarterfinals, Anna Wintour didn’t watch a speck of tennis over the weekend. She appeared at Dior front and center, squired by Blake Lively and a battery of Voguettes (and -ets): Grace Coddington, Edward Enninful, newly-promoted Mark Holgate, and Lauren Santo Domingo. Even more indulgingly, Jay Fielden (who used to run a magazine called Men’s Vogue) very actively took notes in row three and sat behind Wintour. Now that's loyalty!

Linda Wells, Glenda Bailey, Cathy Horyn, and Elle’s Alexis Bryan Morgan seemed to be the sole representatives of their titles, while Jessica Diehl also made her front row debut as Vanity Fair’s fashion director. Fascinating: she sat right beside Michael Roberts.

Tommy Ton and Bryan Boy are filling the new-ish "elite blogger" niche at the shows. Tavi and her hats? Nowhere to be seen, to the relief of child labor activists everywhere. Front row step ubiquitor Scott Schuman is also MIA. Another missing person? Anna Dello Russo, fueling even more speculation that she's W-bound (and thus enjoying her blessed August vacation a month early). Russian empress Aliona Doletskaya missed Dior, but she's expected at Armani. Whew!

And speaking of Russia, Evelina Khromchenko, one of most inescapable and ambitious fashion personalities, was fired from the EIC job at L'Officiel Russia this summer (a post that she held since 1999), for apparently being too popular. She authored a book and became a regular on one of country’s most morning popular TV shows while winning the Russki equivalent of a Daytime Emmy in the process—something American editors and their CAA agents strive for these days.  She was replaced by the publisher’s wife, Maria Nevskiy, who made her EIC couture debut at Dior. But don’t worry...Moscow does not believe in tears. Khromchenko was still front row and center in Paris and had a better seat than Nevski. And you thought the Gotham turns of events was dramatic!
VALENTINE UHOVSKI




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