How interesting of La Bruni, a fashion icon herself to pronounce our own Sam Cam as ‘Some kind of icon’, with a ‘maverick’ sense of style.
That’s generous praise indeed coming from the oh so soignée, Dior-loving Madame Sarkozy. For knowing Carla as I do, I’ve interviewed her twice for The Times, she is very much a man’s woman, and possesses an arch, feline personality she applies to devastating effect.
If you want Carla to melt, the way to her heart is to talk about cats. Carla is mad about them, and last time we met, she talked devotedly about her two treasured felines as if they were lovers, who at the time mostly lived in her rambling house in Monte Carlo. Talk to Carla about a subject close to her heart and she becomes adorable and incredibly generous. She once invited me on holiday; and yes, I have yet to take up her delightful offer, though I am free for the whole of August.
Most of the time it is hard to break through the famously brittle exterior, Carla can be as chilly as the arctic, especially with women; but perhaps she has found a kindred spirit in the coolly elegant Creative Director of Smythson, and rather admires her quirky, confident, English Eccentric style. What French woman would ever think of wearing a T-shirt day dress? Ingenious!
Like Carla, Samantha grew up in a gilded world awash with lovely things and exciting opportunities as an English Baronet’s daughter. Both women also share an interest and killer understanding of the tricky politics of fashion and how to get dressed for the world’s press without leading to the cruel barbs reserved for Cheri Blair or Sarah Brown.
Ultimately, both Carla and Sam possess an innate capacity to dazzle and captivate; naturally, the celebrated upper class confidence simmers beneath the surface allure, and the spectacle is thus very much on their terms, not ours.
So maybe this is just the start of a beautiful friendship forged out of a mutual interest in fashion, good breeding and sexy, very powerful men.