YOU may think fur needs all the good publicity it can get but the organisers of the Hong Kong International Fur Gala 1998 were obviously of a different opinion. While PR company Occasions hyped the February 28 event as 'a dazzling fashion show', an attached form contained a set of dire warnings for the media: 'All members of the press will be restricted to the press area during the fashion show ... located at the back of the hall, which is about 50 feet away from the stage. Cameras with long distance lens will be needed.' Also, while other guests would be served 'a table', the media would be given a buffet dinner in a separate area. Perhaps not the best way to ensure a good press for a questionable fashion trend. beauty spots SISLEY is to skincare what London label Voyage is to fashion: expensive, elitist and sought after by those in the know. The French brand, created more than 20 years ago by Count and Countess d'Ornano, has become the top-selling skincare range at the Neiman Marcus store in Beverly Hills, out-performing even cult favourite Erno Lazlo. Now the brand is poised to raise its profile here with this week's visit by its Paris-based beauty consultant, Rachel Royo. She will be courting converts at Sisley counters in Sogo and the Pacific Place branches of Lane Crawford and Seibu from tomorrow until March 16. (Call 2838-6163 for an appointment.) But Sisley does not come cheap. The botanical brand prides itself on such exotic ingredients as top-of-the-range ginseng (which costs up to HK$254,000 per kilo) and Siberian tomato (leaves are plucked two days before they are frozen, for some esoteric reason). Expect to pay $220 for rose lip gloss and up to $1,750 for 10 vials of intensive complexion treatment. Users swear by it, and retailers everywhere, apparently, are begging to carry it. skin food 'DELICIOUSLY lightweight ... fresh, apricot-coloured ... a delicate citrus fragrance ...' It may sound good enough to eat but this is not a description of fruit salad, it's SkinBreakfast, a new product from French brand Method Jeanne Piaubert. Packed with vitamins, magnesium, zinc and amino acids, the cream is described as 'a cocktail of vitamins and energy for your skin'. The people behind the brand will extol the merits of SkinBreakfast at an event - breakfast, naturally - at the Peninsula hotel on Wednesday. they came, they saw, they bought THE Swank Shop's recent in-store show not only pulled in the crowds, it also made some handsome sales. Roberto Cavalli's sweet spring dresses virtually flew out the store, as did many of the bold Christian Lacroix numbers. And the top-priced dress at the show, a $65,000 Gianfranco Ferre evening gown, was snapped up almost as soon as the model peeled it off her back. The buyer? A Hong Kong jeweller. Ferre is becoming so popular locally that Swank is to devote an entire trunk show to the brand. Scheduled for April 30 at the Grand Hyatt, the lunch and tea shows will showcase the Italian designer's well-received spring/summer line. wooden tops IF THERE is such a thing as trendy wood then huanghuali is it. Furniture made of the deep brown tropical rosewood, which comes from Thailand and Hainan province in China, now graces the most fashionable homes in Europe and the US. Collectors are mad for it: Christie's recently sold a Chinese marble-inlaid huanghuali screen for a cool US$1.1 million (HK$8.5 million). Much more affordable is the capsule collection up for grabs in an exhibition at funky Hollywood Road store China Art Central. The show starts on Thursday and continues for a week. it's show time NO DOUBT the usual socialites and 'celebrities' will be out in force at the forthcoming luncheon show of Hong Kong designer Leo Fan's spring/summer collection. The invitation-only event will take place at the Conrad ballroom on March 24. But a more unusual event at the Hong Kong International School on March 28 is open to anyone. The Tai Tam school is holding a fashion show, Allure '98, using students as models for new collections from chain-store brands like U2, G2000 and Gavin. Tickets are just $100, $80 for students, with proceeds going to A Better Tomorrow Children's Fund, which raises money to provide surgery for orphans in China. Tickets are available from the school; call Jana Cheung on 2899-1299.