Today's Women's Wear Daily features an impressively-long article about Celebutantes, the story of "26-year-old Lola Santisi, daughter of an Oscar-winning director and a former model, who's working as a brand ambassador for an up-and-coming designer vying to dress a celebrity for the Oscars." Written by Daughters-of-Hollywood Amanda Goldberg and Ruthanna Hopper and based, no doubt, on the lives of the ladies they know and lunch with, the book is being sold as the ultimate insider's guide to Tinseltown's foibles (Hopper is daughter to Dennis; Goldberg is daughter to Charlie's Angels producer Leonard). The two are also featured prominently in a 3-page "Personal Style" spread in the new issue of Harper's Bazaar, in which they recommend $2,200 Hayward Dowel purses and $3,795 Missoni dresses (ugh).
Listen, I'm not hating on these women for using their considerable connections to accomplish their creative goals, but why is it that of all the "chick lit" books that hit the shelves every month, those written by or about socialites and urging conspicuous consumption the only ones that get any press?
Earlier this year, NYC society doyenne Holly Peterson, daughter of the chairman of the Blackstone group wrote an aggressively mediocre book called The Manny, made a YouTube video with her rich friends to accompany it, all followed by mentions in the New York Times Sunday Styles, and the New Yorker.
What's curious also is that in the Bazaar profile, Goldberg and Harper choose a Jenni Kayne dress as one of their fashion picks. Kayne, a rising designer, was the subject of the Bazaar "Personal Style" feature just two months ago. She is also the daughter of the wealthy LA elite, and counts Rachel Zoe and the Olsen twins as members of her inner circle. Kayne told the L.A. Times last year, "My dad happens to be really good at what he does, and he has been successful (her father is a high profile investment banker). But my parents are not socialites, and I'm not a socialite. I've found articles online where they compare me to Nikki Hilton. I think she's a really nice girl, but that's not me." Tell it to Tory Burch, sister.
There are so many excellent books written and clothes by women who don't happen to have access to multi-million dollar fortunes, Phillip Lim dresses, or media reporters. Can't book publicists and magazine editors give those women some love, too? Though maybe Ruthanna Hopper deserves all the breaks she can get, because when she was a kid, her batshit papa tried to stab Rip Torn, drank thirty beers and did three grams of coke a day, and subsequently has given large sums of money to the Republican party. It's hard out there for a celebutante!
Earlier: The Problem With Chick Lit