Glamour and sparkle overtook Madison Avenue on Friday night as huge names in fashion and entertainment celebrated the opening of Fendi’s new flagship New York store on 57th Street. Headliner Rihanna, who arrived toward the end of the event — looking dazzling in a pink fur and shiny brown dress, toting her two signature baguette designs — was one of the five leading designers behind Fendi’s 3Baguette Bag charity campaign.
The other four women chosen to spearhead the project were Sarah Jessica Parker, who was auctioning off the purple striped baguette she designed to support the Brain Trauma foundation; British model Jourdan Dunn, whose sleek and simple beige bag that she designed to be “fun” was an homage to her Jamaican heritage, with proceeds supporting sickle-cell disease; blogger Leandra Medine, who designed a colorful and indigenous-feeling bag; and artist Rachel Feinstein, who was not only wearing a vintage green Fendi dress, but her baguette creation, which was inspired by classic works of art.
Parker said that her relationship with Fendi can be traced in a straight line back to when Fendi allowed her crew to borrow a baguette for “Sex and the City.”
“No one up to that point had really felt comfortable loaning us anything, and we were working with very little money and mostly shopping at thrift stores,” she said. “So for the House of Fendi to turn over a chalice like that was such a huge deal and was a gateway for other people to do the same. It was like bona fides for us.”
On the packed red carpet, celebs traded secrets for Fashion Week survival — which included everything from “get plenty of sleep,” according to Dunn (“even if it’s just in the chair while you’re getting your makeup done,” she added) to “drink lots of water and get there on time,” from Rosario Dawson. Others discussed Oscar predictions — “I’m rooting for ‘Boyhood,'” Feinstein told Variety — and reminisced about their first Fendi pieces.
Dawson noted how the first Fendi bag she bought rewarded years of working. “I was taking care of my family, and I started really young when I was 15, so those kind of purchases weren’t on my mind — it was more about my mortgage,” she recalled. “But I remember the first bag I got was one of those ‘just because’ kind of gifts. I’ve always been obsessed with that patten, that F pattern. It’s just so beautiful.”
“The Fendi spy bag, the baguette… I feel like Fendi was the start of that it-bag movement for me,” said fashion maven Rachel Zoe. Today, however, she’s coveting the coats. “Fendi coats just make me swoon,” she confessed.
Martha Stewart arrived wearing a fur Fendi coat of her own, which she said was the first Fendi piece she ever purchased 16 years ago in Aspen.
Other attendees at the flashy event included Fendi creative director Karl Lagerfeld and Naomi Campbell, who greeted each other with several air kisses; model Coco Rocha; DJ Erykah Badu, who sported a fantastic hat and headphones; actress Hailee Steinfeld, who looked charming in a brightly colored orange and purple jacket; Hailey Baldwin, wearing an olive-colored strapless mini dress; Olivia Palermo; June Ambrose, who stunned in an oversized furry hat that she designed herself; Zoë Kravitz; and Sofia Coppola, who mingled with Parker inside the sprawling new space prior to a VIP dinner.