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Mercedes Bass and Oscar de la Renta.

Soap Opera

Everybody loves a juicy little feud. In September New York’s Metropolitan Opera angered longtime supporter Oscar de la Renta by choosing Christian Lacroix, Karl Lagerfeld and John Galliano to create Renée Fleming’s costumes for opening night. In response to the snub, de la Renta said he planned to skip the event for the first time in 20 years and withdraw his annual donation. “I have to defend the talent in this country,” he told WWD, referencing the fact that not a single American was among the designers selected. In the end, however, a call from gala cochair Mercedes Bass convinced him to change his mind. He came and sat next to Bass, who happened to be wearing a custom de la Renta gown. And ever the gracious gentleman, the designer also sent his check.

  • Bass and de la Renta: Steve Eichner