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Paris Fashion Week: U.S. Ambassador Charles Rivkin hosts Michael Kors anniversary bash

March 7, 2011 |  5:43 pm

U.S. Ambassador to France Charles Rivkin and wife Susan Tolson's Paris residence, with that spectacular portrait of George Washington. Long, candlelit tables stretching as far as the eye can see. Glitterati including Zoe Saldana, Jennifer Hudson, Claudia Schiffer, Carmen Kass,  Karolina Kurkova and Mary J. Blige, who took the stage to sing Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven," of all things.
Does Michael Kors know how to celebrate a 30th anniversary, or what?

The American designer was France's adopted son Monday night when the global fashion industry gathered in his honor, nibbling on foie gras and sipping Champagne, before sitting down to a  quintessentially American dinner of shrimp cocktail, filet of beef and chocolate cake.
Michael's mom Joan was in from Los Angeles for the occasion and shared that she and Tolson first met  at a trunk show a few years ago in L.A. (Joan is her son's L.A. ambassador, and Tolson and Rivkin lived in Santa Monica before moving to France in 2009. Tolson is an investment banker, and Rivkin the former chief executive of the Jim Henson Co. and animation production company WildBrain. He was the California finance co-chair of Barack Obama's presidential campaign.)
Rivkin welcomed Kors heartily, saying, "His journey represents the essence of the American dream," and "May this ride never end." And Blige -- clad in a sequined Michael Kors catsuit -- belted out Led Zeppelin like a champ, before launching into U2's "One," which got everyone dancing. (She also took advantage of her moment in the French spotlight to announce she will be starring in a Nina Simone biopic.)
When Kors took the mike to thank everyone for coming, the fashion-obsessed crowd advised him that his necktie was flipped backward. "It's Hermes, so it's OK," he said, referring to the quintessentially French brand with his usual good humor. While acknowledging all of his model friends in the crowd, Kors also said how much he enjoyed seeing his clothes on "the norms," in other words, those in the crowd who do not have zero percent body fat.
And that, of course, is his genius.
--Booth Moore in Paris

PHOTOS: U.S. Embassy in Paris throws a dinner in honor of Michael Kors

Photos: At top, from left Joan Kors, Michael Kors and Lance LePere outside the U.S. Embassy in Paris (Credit: Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images). Celebrity attendees at the 20th anniversary party hosted by U.S. Ambassador Cahrles Rivkin included (from left) Karolina Kurkova (Credit: Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images), Jennifer Hudson, Mary J. Blige and Claudia Schiffer. Credit: Joel Ryan / Associated Press