Microwaved cat or faddish flowers?

You be the judge. Plus: Everybody loves Christian.

By Carina Chocano
Published April 3, 2001 12:30AM (EDT)

That thing squirming on Sigourney Weaver's shoulder at the Academy Awards was not a microwaved cat fighting for survival, but a faddish flower accessory flapping in the air-conditioned breeze. Minnie Driver wears a similar bouquet by Kayatone Adeli in a slightly less alarming yellow in this month's Vogue. The magazine credits the floral revival to Yves Saint Laurent's Tom Ford, who decked his models with fresh orchids before sending them down the runway this spring. Lately, they're everywhere. It's a bloomin' trend.

More reasons to love the Bush family: Sixteen-year-old first niece/Elite model Lauren Bush carries a Christian Dior handbag and recently "fell in love with" a $9,000 Oscar de la Renta gown. Bush is the daughter of Neil Bush, whose bumbling of the Silverado Savings and Loan debacle cost the taxpayers $1 billion in 1992.

"I love Dior," chirped a giddy Bush in this month's Vogue. "Dior is the best!" Bush also loves Michael Kors and Carolina Herrera. Is couture a tad excessive for one so young and compassionate? Well, as her Uncle George says, "We must put more money in the hands of consumers." Maybe she's just doing her part to restore optimism.

And, as for the rest of us, let us wear Gap.

Independent filmmaking is so 1990. Nowadays, anybody whose parents are anybody is designing a collection. Denise and Marc Rich's daughter Ilona debuted her eccentric designs last week at a studio space in New York's West Chelsea. According to Fashion Wire Daily, the space was decked in sculptures of striped fluorescent poodles and rotating elephant heads. Party-parasites Paris and Nicky Hilton modeled, as did Molly Gallagher, a trapeze artist. The clothes included flared pants, a lime green jumpsuit and "Little House on the Prairie"-inspired bonnets. Models wore solid, hard wigs and striped spherical headpieces on their heads and cut-out jello circles on their cheeks.

"I love Betsey Johnson and Christian Dior," Rich told Fashion Wire Daily, "but I am coming at this from an art angle, so I put a different spin on everything."

That included herself. Rich was duded out in asymmetrical hair-buns, a gold lamé scarf, a purple blazer over a floral dress and Pippi Longstocking makeup complete with rosy-red cheek circles, smeared fuchsia lipstick and eyeliner-drawn freckles.

One designer called it "Bill Blass on acid." We're thinking Holly Hobby on crack.

Gaaah! "Bridget Jones's Diary," the movie, opens this month nationwide, so Renée Zellweger is working overtime to erase that common-girl image from your mind before it even forms there. The actress, who graces the cover of this month's Vogue, has already lost the 20 pounds she gained for the role. She recently spent some time sandwiched between social X-rays Deeda Blair and Patricia Altschul at Balmain's spring show in Paris, looking gaunt and ropey; less "everywoman" and more "no one you know."

"Bridget Jones" may have spoken to millions of chocolate-obsessed, gym-avoiding chardonnay drinkers, but Ms. Zellweger, who is now officially a movie star, would like to remind us that she enjoys egg whites and spinach, and hates ice cream, cookies and sweets.

"I don't like them!" she tells Vogue, reportedly "screaming with laughter."

Funny, that's how we reacted.

Carina Chocano

Carina Chocano writes about TV for Salon. She is the author of "Do You Love Me or Am I Just Paranoid?" (Villard).

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