“We all have the Ali MacGraw 1970s shoes!” exclaimed Lucy Sykes Rellie, the children’s clothing designer and socialite. “Aren’t they superb?” Ms. Rellie motioned toward her brown, strappy wedge sandals, which were also adorning the feet of several other women at the Spring Street flagship of the leather-goods brand Hogan on Thursday, April 24: makeup artist Gucci Westman, Marie Claire fashion director Tracy Taylor and underage platinum-blond soap star Leven Rambin (who wore them in purple with a matching leather jacket).
Ms. Rellie, Ms. Westman and Ms. Taylor were the co-hostesses of a shopping event attended by model Molly Sims, former model Kelly Bensimon and America’s Most Smartest Model hostess Mary Alice Stephenson, benefiting Surfrider Foundation, an ocean-saving nonprofit founded by surfers. Rag & Bone designers Marcus Wainwright and David Neville were also among those sipping “Surf-tinis” (lemonade spiked with vodka, revealed a server) and munching Thai lettuce wraps while pawing through items such as massive silver leather handbags ($1,100), tiny, leather-trimmed infant sneakers ($150-$200), and, of course, the sandals adorning the feet of the event’s hosts: the Hogan Block Wedges ($425). “We let them choose a shoe, and they all chose the same one!” said a publicist for the company with a shrug.
Ms. Rellie’s hedge-fund manager husband, Euan, bounced around the room in Hogan leather bowling shoes and a blue jacket (“I hosted an event for Hogan and all I got was this lousy jacket!” he cried). “I love their stuff, even on my hubby,” said Ms. Rellie. She wore white, cropped Made in Heaven skinny jeans and a royal blue Diane Von Furstenberg blouse. “I like things that you can wear out to dinner or you can wear in the day,” she added. “So you can wear ballet flats for day or put the wedge on for evening. Then I think it’s all about dresses. Pretty, pretty dresses. Short.”
Nearby, Ms. Westman was milling about in a green Rag & Bone frock, drinking a Heineken. She is married to Mr. Neville, who had just left to get Chinese food. “He’s usually very patient when I go shopping.” She had the thoroughbred look of a former prep-school student. “Lucy Sykes asked if I wanted to host the event, and I saw the collection and I was like, ‘Damn right!’”
Ms. Westman, the former Lancôme international artistic director, was atwitter with excitement over her new position as global artistic director of Revlon. “I didn’t really want to travel as much anymore, so it was perfect how it worked out,” she gushed. “I had my baby, and I want to have another one, and I don’t want to spend so much time away. …”
As for Ms. Rambin, she was wearing the most Hogan ensemble of all (aside from the purple shoes and jacket, there was a yellow Rock Bag) and explained her presence thusly: “I’m great friends with the Rellies. I have to show some love to my New York family!”
Meanwhile, Hogan’s new CEO, Marco Giacometti, a recent transplant from the City of Lights, looked a bit bewildered as he surveyed the room. “Paris is much more about understatement; it’s much more quiet,” he said. “New York is crazy. In Paris, it’s not easy to put together this kind of audience. Because maybe it doesn’t exist.”