Fendi celebrates its famous “Baguette” in New York

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NEW YORK (AP) — You would have thought this was a movie premiere, with the hype converging outside the Hammerstein Ballroom in midtown Manhattan. But inside, despite the presence of celebrities, the real star was a handbag.

Not just any handbag, but the “Baguette” – the ubiquitous Fendi bag created 25 years ago and named for the long French loaf of bread and the way it’s also carried under the arm of the discerning shopper. . Friday night’s Fendi show was a big anniversary celebration for the bag and its enduring claim to pop culture fame.

But why New York, when Fendi usually parades in Italy? The bag had early success and resonance in pop culture in New York, memorably immortalized in an episode of “Sex and the City” in 2000, when an attacker had the temerity to try to take it. one to Carrie Bradshaw when he apparently didn’t know. what was it called.

“Give me your bag,” asked the thug in the alley. “It’s a wand!” Carrie tipped him off as he walked away with her glowing purple version.

It’s safe to say everyone knew their bags from their baguettes on Friday night, when around 600 people gathered in the ballroom – some on the ground floor and some on high seats on the balcony – to celebrate the bag and its many iterations over the years.

The evening marked a three-way collaboration. Fendi womenswear designer Kim Jones had enlisted her friend and former boss, Marc Jacobs – the quintessential New York designer – to lend her signature romantic streetwear vibe to a series of around 10 ensembles featuring, of course , the baguette. (“I’m never one to shy away from an iconic bag,” Jacobs said on a theater-style show.) And jeweler Tiffany & Co. introduced its own chopsticks in signature robin’s egg blue.

In the front row sat Kim Kardashian, in blonde locks and a sheer, sequined bodycon dress, but chopsticks were center stage. There were big wands, small wands, nano wands. Shiny baguettes, fluffy baguettes, shimmering and creamy baguettes.

There were banana chopsticks and sometimes double chopsticks – two sizes stacked together. The pockets have been reinvented in chopsticks. There were tiny satin rods fashioned on tube socks – a perfect place to put small gadgets – or if you wanted them closer to your head, attached to a satin baseball cap. The mood was a mix of fancy and casual, sequins and sweatshirts.

At the start of the show, a huge drape on the wall fell to the floor to reveal a giant mirror, suddenly allowing the entire room, balconies and all, to see each other. The models were meandering on the floor, but when they were done, the mirror suddenly disappeared and the models were standing in a huge display window, like in a store.

Linda Evangelista, wearing a huge cape and a Tiffany blue dress, walked out with the designers for a final salute. They cheered her on, in what was a very public moment for the 90s model, now 57, after her recent ordeal with what she described as a disastrous body sculpting procedure that left her disfigured.

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