Talking in Style

Hollywood has a new high-tech accessory from designer Kathrine Baumann Beverly Hills. Going beyond her well-known minaudière line, Baumann tickled the style bone of every L.A. starlet when she introduced her own Swarovski crystal-adorned cell phone line just in time for the Academy Awards.

“The phones were originally conceived to fit perfectly into our minaudières, along with lipstick, a driver’s license, a camera, and a credit card,” says Baumann. Now, the phones are accessories in their own right.

Baumann unveiled the first prototypes of her new KBBH Phone Collection at the TMG Luxury Suites atop Rodeo Drive’s Luxe Hotel for Oscar Week. Within the week, fashionistas like Paris Hilton embraced the idea and sported their new bejeweled phones on the Academy Award party circuit. Women attending the Oscars, like Catherine Zeta Jones, also carried the phones, though they kept them tucked away inside their bags.

The sleek, ergonomic, triband phone prototypes are adorned with classic Baumann patterns inspired directly by her minaudière collection. A removable Swarovski crystal necklace transforms the ensemble into a piece of jewelry to be worn conveniently around the neck instead of being buried inside a bag where important calls might get missed. The KBBH triband phones are hand-adorned with Swarovski crystals and are available in Baumann’s signature colors—Leopard, Stained Glass, Snakeskin, Glamour Girl Pink, Chocolate Sateen, and Granite—along with Safari and Hematite Evening Plaid patterns.

KBBH Triband Phones, featuring the KBBH logo emblazoned on a sapphire blue backlight, feature Short Messaging Service (SMS) capabilities, a bright color screen, silver keys, a 500-name address book, and an Internet browser. Simply insert a SIM card from an everyday T-Mobile, AT&T, or Cingular service, and the phone is ready to use here in the States or around the world.

The collection retails from $1,000 to $1,500 per phone including a matching jeweled necklace.