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“Hi, everybody,” Finneas said upon taking the stage Tuesday on a rooftop hovering above Melrose Avenue, minutes before 8 p.m. “It’s nice to be here. This is the first time I’ve performed on any form of stage in two years for anybody. So, I may bomb and this would be a high-stakes bomb. I’m hoping that I don’t.”
The 24-year-old most certainly did not but the stakes were measured correctly considering he had the honor of, in a way, kicking off the festivities for his collaborators at Cartier as the luxury house hosted an exclusive launch event to celebrate its Clash [Un]limited and Clash de Cartier collections. The intimate affair went down in the heart of West Hollywood inside and on top of a concept space (designed for Cartier by Snarkitecture) that, for the next week, will host the exhibition for the public.
The ground floor showcases an exclusive soundscape produced and created by Finneas that is paired with the limited-edition pieces including a reversible high-jewelry necklace in white gold, onyx and diamonds, a “mitten” watch in rose gold mesh and diamonds, conical onyx rings with diamond inlay and studded bracelets, to name but a few. Guests perused the baubles during a cocktail party before heading upstairs, which hosted Finneas’s performance and the elegant dinner for 60 well-heeled guests.
“I sort of envisioned this as when you’re at a fancy event and there’s somebody on, it sounds kind of nice but you’re talking over them,” joked Finneas, who forgot to mention that he did take the stage at the Grammy Awards earlier this year where he added to his haul by picking up Record of the Year alongside superstar sister Billie Eilish for “Everything I Wanted.” “So, I won’t be mad if any of you do that. It might be the only time you ever hear somebody on stage say that, but I’m saying that. If you guys are in an interesting conversation and I interrupted it, get back to it. I’m going to play a couple songs.”
There was no shortage of conversation topics as guests gushed about the glamorous (and COVID-19 safe) re-entry Cartier delivered to the social scene by mounting such an event. Many in attendance reported that it was their first major night out since the pandemic crushed large-scale events in March 2020. Because of that, there was an electric buzz throughout the evening, enhanced by the jeweler’s expert party planning. For example, press and VIPs were chauffeured from the Waldorf Astoria in Beverly Hills to the event in a fleet of vintage convertibles, complete with a curated playlist of songs for the ride.
The dinner menu was crafted by Michelin-starred celebrity chef Curtis Stone, who made sure to drop by each table with a round of plates with each course taking inspiration from the Clash de Cartier collection. Stone handed off dessert duties to chef Chris Ford who crafted high gloss black chocolate picot domes filled with matte silver mini macarons, also inspired by the collection. But it was more than a sweet treat — the domes provided a bit of a show, too, as guests broke into them using silver mallets that doubled as place settings.
“I hope this evening makes you feel in the spirit of Cartier and our new collection,” said Cartier North America president and CEO Mercedes Abramo in brief remarks. “We know it’s been a long time for all of us. We feel very, very honored that you chose us and we’re happy to have you.”
Abramo made sure to thank a special guest seated at her table, Emmy nominated star Lily Collins who serves as the global ambassador for Clash [Un]limted. A longtime friend of Cartier, Collins spent time mingling with other guests including Dan Levy, Panthère de Cartier global ambassador Ella Balinska, Kathy Hilton and daughter Nicky Hilton Rothschild, super-producer Benny Blanco, recording artists Ashe and Gracie Abrams, Dove Cameron, Renell Medrano, and others.
Back to Finneas. The Cartier collaborator, who attended with girlfriend Claudia Sulewski, delivered a three-song set that was never in danger of being drowned out by party chatter. Everyone was in a trance watching him as he belted out the first-ever live performance of “A Concert Six Months From Now,” the lead single from the producer-songwriter’s upcoming debut album, Optimist. He followed it up with “Break My Heart Again” and closed with “Let’s Fall in Love for the Night.”
The final song seemed a fitting choice for guests smitten by the elements Cartier put together for one of the first major fashion fetes in L.A. in what seemed like forever. Swoon.
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