The Things a Guy Does to Get Noticed

COMPILED BY GAILE ROBINSON

Calvin Klein breezed through town on Tuesday for his first visit to the Beverly Hills' Neiman Marcus. In tow was his newest model, 40-year-old Lisa Taylor. She was hauled out of the model mothball fleet by photographer Steven Meisel for Calvin's latest sportswear campaign. Asked if Taylor's age was just a ploy for media attention, Klein said brusquely, "No point in not being noticed." Which brings to mind his 116-page ad volley for his jeans. It seems those sinewy male models were asked to place rolled-up socks between them and their Calvins in order to magnify their manhood. (No point in not being noticed.) "I told them I had enough down there," says model Bruce Wildman. "But the stylists had us put them in" anyway. * HAUTE HARDWARE: If you are one of the lucky 6,000 who received a nut and a bolt in the mail this week, think before you toss. The trinkets are part of the Saturday grand opening of the first Armani A/X shop in this area, at Neiman Marcus, Beverly Hills. The haute hardware is redeemable for Armani merchandise, though the invite declines to name the trade-off items. (For the New York opening, T-shirts were distributed.) This is the budget-friendly Armani--80% of items are less than $100.

* DAZZLING: No, Richard Gere was not making "Pretty Woman Part II" at Fred Joaillier on Monday, while several dozen gawkers peered through the window. It seems the recently married actor was taking advantage of a day off in honor of George Washington's and Abraham Lincoln's birthdays to buy diamond earrings and a diamond tennis bracelet for his bride, model Cindy Crawford. His purchases totaled about $20,000.

* SWIM SIGNS: When it comes to predicting who will sit in the Oval Office come '93, swimwear designer Anne Cole has some ideas. "You can almost tell who's going to be in the White House by the swimwear currently in vogue," she says. There's a "blah" trend that leads her to believe the Republicans will remain in office. "What's selling now is conservative: navel-covering briefs and modest bra-style tops," far tamer than the racy bikinis of the '60s and '70s when Democrats ran the show. Given the performance of ultra-conservative Republican challenger Patrick Buchanan in this week's New Hampshire primary, Cole fears a new trend: drop-seat suits last favored at the turn of the century.

* OAT COW-TURE: Now that New York designers including Marc Jacobs and Isaac Mizrahi have formally lassoed Western chic--from fringed jackets to tooled leather belts--it's not surprising that Giorgio is now a cowpoke outpost. Country-style Grammy nominee Reba McEntire roamed through the South Coast Plaza store and, a store spokesperson says, purchased gussied-up versions of country classics. Among the buys were sterling silver cowboy hat-and-boot earrings, a lizard belt with a sterling buckle and a rugged tapestry vest. That should dazzle the folks back home in Tennessee.

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