First published 2012. Words by Livia Firth
Colin and Livia Firth host with Anna Zegna and Vanity Fair an incredilble dinner at Chateau Marmont.
On Wednesday night in LA Colin and I along with Anna Zegna, fourth generation of fashion house Ermenegildo Zegna hosted a dinner. Guests including Emily Blunt, John Kravinski, Mia Wasakoswa, Cameron Diaz, Kirstin Davis, Kenneth Branah, Gary Oldman, Emile Hirsch, Djimon Hounsou and Kimora Lee Simmons all sat around a long table at Chateau’s Bungalow to share tales of Oxfam trips and Oscar predictions.
When Annie Lennox asked me to launch an Italian chapter of The Circle with Marie Claire Italia, Anna Zegna was immediately up for getting involved. We speak the same language on two levels! Her family’s fashion brand has become a beacon of sustainability and ethical innovation, particularly focusing on traceability. She also runs the Fondazione Zegna, which works to progress fair trade and sustainability education.
I was (understandably I think!) a little nervous when it was my turn to stand up and speak to the assembled guests about Oxfam and my trips. But there was a real appetite for more information about Oxfam’s work worldwide. Many guests also asked about the Green Carpet Challenge and fashion was embedded into the conversation. We talked of fashion as one of the greatest of communication tools we have that can be beautiful and inspiring but is also a vital part of the fight for social and ecological equity. My favourite quote comes from Ali Hewson (aka Mrs Bono), “We carry the story of the people who make our clothes around with us. For example, if the industry was to source cotton from ‘fair’ sources there would be potential to lift 10 million African families, dependent on cotton farming, out of poverty”.
We had evidently invited thirty of LA’s most passionate talkers. Well into the night we discussed plans and ideas as to how to make social and environmental justice a reality. I expect to bump into some of our guests on the GCC pathway and perhaps some Oxfam trips in the future. Onwards and upwards! We raised a glass in tribute to Marie Colvin, award winning foreign correspondent for the Sunday Times, killed that day in Syria. Marie was a much admired friend of Oxfam and The Circle, a passionate and courageous journalist who heroically reported the plight of women and children in wartime and made the world listen.
Words cannot express how much she will be missed.
Photos by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for VF