The fashion dinner circuit is back up and running: on Wednesday evening, buzzy Manhattan restaurant Saint Theo’s in the West Village, was full of a particularly glamorous crowd. The occasion this time was a celebration thrown by Kering and Phaidon for the publication of “Woman Made: Great Women Designers,” a new tome celebrating the work of women furniture, textile, product and lighting designers throughout history and in the present.
“People are dying over this place!” Jill Kargman said at the front door as she made her way in. Guests queued outside while awaiting COVID-19 test results, which were done in the outdoor seating area, before heading inside the busy joint once cleared. Several designers featured in the book were in attendance, including Stephanie Beamer, Bec Brittain, Rachel Bullock, Carol Catalano, Crystal Ellis, Felicia Ferrone, Ania Jaworska, Merve Kahraman, Anne Krohn Graham, Monling Lee, Rosie Li, Sophie Lou Jacobsen, Dina Nur Satti and Sarita Posada. Other guests included Kimberly Drew, Sandy Brant, Ivy Getty, Jon Neidich, Claire Olshan and Noor Tagouri.
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“It felt really exciting because we’ve always tried to be champions of diversity and women and design,” Crystal Ellis, one-third of the furniture design group Egg Collective, said of being included in the book.
“And as students of design and architecture, [Phaidon] has been a publishing house that has been iconic in how we have taken in information in the world of design, so it’s just such a happy marriage to be able to be part of this project,” Beamer, her codesigner, said.
The trio, which also comprises Hillary Petrie, only got a first look at the book upon arrival, but they were thrilled to see the pieces their page was across from.
“On the page opposite us, I recognized the chair — it’s a chair and an ottoman that I thought was an amazing design, but I’d had no idea who designed it, I just had seen it. And I found out tonight that it was designed by a woman,” Ellis said. “It is interesting, we need to get educated. A lot of these women, their names are not top of mind on lists of ‘great designers,’ past and present. And I think publications like this serve to broaden the conversation.”
Launch Gallery: Kering x Phaidon WOMAN MADE: Great Women Designers dinner