Models in berets and Eiffel Tower-printed dresses mingled while waiters served macarons and Champagne and a mini-orchestra played smooth French melodies.
The lady of the hour, designer Catherine Malandrino, was the one responsible for turning a little piece of Manhattan into Paris Thursday afternoon, and she will do the same at Kohl's stores nationwide this fall.
Malandrino is the next high-end designer to collaborate with DesigNation at Kohl's, following an Istanbul-inspired collection by Narciso Rodriguez and a Rio de Janeiro-inspired collection by Derek Lam.
Dressed in a white quilted leather jacket, a printed black skirt and red pointy-toed stilettos, Malandrino embodied the fierce femininity of her designs while previewing her line for reporters.
"Everything in Paris inspires me," she told Newsday in her effortlessly chic French accent, "from the streets to the people to the history to the lovers."
The collection has fun with a literal translation of the theme at times, with "Paris" scrawled across sweaters, "Je T'aime Paris" printed on tees and a black-beaded Eiffel Tower placed upon a sheer-backed dress. On other pieces the inspiration is infused more organically, with a black and white palette, elegantly done cut-outs and layering, figure-flattering dresses, sophisticated button-downs and pops of deep maroon.
The 80-piece collection will cost between $36 and $130 and will be available for a limited time at Kohl's stores and kohls.com this fall.