ATTENDING Paris Fashion Week is a little like stepping into a parallel universe.
While in this parallel universe I only have two Twilight moments per day during which my real world and this rather surreal one collide.
One is early morning from about 3am and entails frantic emails to and from work. The second is a call to the kids on my way home from a show or dinner at about 10pm when they are readying themselves for school in Australia the following day.
But this time was different. My phone went into meltdown when family, some friends (interestingly those who rarely ask me anything about fashion), and colleagues texted and messaged me to talk about the Zoolander moment at the Valentino show.
In case you missed it — which means you mustn’t have Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TV or a radio, and this must be the first newspaper you have read this week — Owen Wilson and Ben Stiller pulled a stunt while filming the Zoolander sequel in Paris.
The movie is to be released next February, which thanks to this moment of marketing gold everyone now knows. It’s testament to the talents of Valentino designers, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli, that they were able to show a stunning collection which managed to hold its own and bask in the actors’ limelight.
The show had finished and we were awaiting the finale during which the models do one last walk in a line before the designers take their bows. Suddenly the music changed dramatically to The Human League’s Don’t You Want Me and Wilson was standing doing Blue Steel a few metres away, dressed in pyjamas and an overcoat.
It took a while to register what was going on.
I was seated in the perfect position to video Stiller as he strutted along the runway and grabbed an iPhone belonging to social media star and I suspect plant, Jerome Jarre. Stiller filmed a selfie Vine video with it that has had more than 15 million loops (or views) to date. His kiss with Anna Wintour backstage has had two million plus.
But other things did happen in Paris. Chanel turned the Grand Palais into ‘Brasserie Gabrielle’, complete with mosaic floors, cafe table and chairs, bar and staffed with waiters.
Next to the stunning new Foundation Louis Vuitton designed by Frank Gehry, Louis Vuitton built geodesic domes in which Nicolas Ghesquiere showed his best collection for the house yet.
And the Australian Fashion Chamber hosted its inaugural Australian Designers Abroad event at the Australian Embassy in Paris. Six of our best, Ellery, Tome, Dion Lee, Strateas Carlucci, Michael Lo Sordo and Camilla & Marc, showed their latest collections before some of the most important critics, buyers and Vogue editors. Australians showing off their best in a parallel universe.