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Milan by Moon

milanmoon1The stars aligned in Milan. Men’s fashion week is not traditionally the celebrity-studded spectacle its women’s counterpart can be, but the city played host to a select few. The catch seemed to be that they were there to do anything but act. James Franco, the face of Gucci’s new Made to Measure cologne, was in town as a behind-the-scenes type. At Gucci’s garden party to launch the scent, a screening room was booked to debut a documentary he produced about the everyday life of designer Frida Giannini. At Calvin Klein’s postshow dinner, held at a lavish spa, Boardwalk Empire’s Michael Pitt was overheard to say that acting is all well and good but he wants to focus his energies on directing.

Maybe that plan-B spirit was catching. It was all slightly…different somehow. At Calvin, the exclusive models who had walked the show that afternoon had descended from the catwalk to mix among mortals, and dinner was preceded by a short set from the bearded folkie Jack Savoretti, who admitted before beginning, “This isn’t how I usually spend my Sunday nights.”

The unusual was the tone of the week. The stylish Fiat heir Lapo Elkann hosted a separate party with Gucci to launch a new collection of swanky seventies-inflected pieces he designed with Giannini. Footballer Leo Messi was at Dolce & Gabbana’s after-show bash in his capacity as a model—the subject of a monograph by designer-turned-lensman Domenico Dolce—rather than a player.

There was so much creative moonlighting that by the time it rolled around to Monday night, you were grateful for Moncler’s thronged store-opening party on via Montenapoleone. It was a fashion brand using a fashion week to launch a fashion shop. How novel.

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