Lady Gaga invaded Barney's New York flagship store beginning Monday night and took over the fifth floor. The luxury emporium enabled the pop diva to set up shop and sell merchandise she herself has selected. But this is not just to enrich her already overstuffed coffers--25% of the sales will be donated to the Born This Way Foundation, which Lady Gaga and her mother created to help bullied youth. Even more exciting, the retailer is calling it the "12 Days of GAGA," with a new limited edition product released each day. Keep in mind that all sales are final and there will be no refunds or exchanges permitted.
I'd been told this would be an incredible nexus of fashion and art and was curious to see what it was all about. The grand opening was posted on Barney's website as 11:59 p.m. on Monday. There was no promise that Gaga would be there, but nightlife luminaries like Kenny Kenny, Markus Kelleman, Darian Darling, and Tommy Hotpants would be on hand to look glam. Being a nocturnal creature, I was thrilled that I could venture out late on a Monday night and party at one of the most expensive Manhattan department stores.
As I arrived, one security guard assured me they would be open all night until the following morning at 10. Although I was hassled a bit at the door, as per usual at any nightlife event, I was upstairs within 10 minutes of arrival, a bad sign.
As I stepped off the elevator into Gaga's Workshop, I soon realized that the party was over even though it was only half past midnight. There were a couple of shoppers but no big crowd and even worse, Lady Gaga herself had arrived at 9 and left before 11--before the workshop was even open.
Her entourage had all left about 11 to go downtown to Breedlove's Magic Monday party at the new venue The Casino at Ludlow Manor, owned by Gaga's sometimes boyfriend Luc Carl. Who knows where the Lady herself went. All that was left was the music. They were blasting the Gaga catalogue and snuck a few insipid holiday songs into the mix.
A few die-hard types actually bought items, but when you're talking about a $15 cookie of Gaga's face, a $65 black stiletto stocking, an "Edge of Glory"-themed nail polish set priced at $45, press-on nails for $225, a "tower" of gummy candy for $95 or a Swarovski Teacup for $695, how much is there really to consider?
How about a one-off pair of Gaga shoes for $4,100? Only the most insane Little Monsters are going to drop too much money on these tchotchkes.
Lady Gaga, I love you but I don't have enough money to buy this crap.