Up and down Seventh Avenue, fashion types have been keeping tabs on who's canceled trips to this week's haute couture collections in Europe, which models won't be there and how many American designers have had samples delayed by U.S. Customs because of heightened wartime security. Conde Nast may have clamped down on overseas travel for its magazine editors, but apparently nothing in fashion is written in stone. Vogue chief Anna Wintour decided to go to the Paris shows after all.

Ronaldus Shamask was supposed to show his fall menswear line tomorrow night in conjunction with the Designers Collective, a seasonal trade show in New York, but his Italian-made samples were held up by Customs because it's taking longer to inspect incoming shipments. At the very least it means Shamask loses some press coverage. Conceivably, though, similar delays may pose problems for other U.S. designers who get fabric and embroideries from Europe or for retailers who depend on timely deliveries from foreign vendors.

Designers are also wondering about the propriety of launching new products now. Bill Blass planned to reassure customers that his appearance this week in Florida stores to promote his new fragrance was scheduled months ago. And some publicists are looking for ways to "soften" such promotions. One proposed a "call for a moment of silence" among customers.

Ah, fashion. Rumors of canceled shows in Paris provoked a spat of gossip in the International Herald Tribune on Tuesday. Pierre Berge, chairman of Yves Saint Laurent, was quoted as saying: "I am not sure that Yves and I will want to show if there are people being killed. It's a question of sensibility." Further on, arch-rival Karl Lagerfeld said: "Life must go on. I am sure Pierre Berge must have his own reasons for wanting to cancel the Saint Laurent show." Meanwhile, Jacques Mouclier, head of the trade association that organizes the French fashion shows, was assuring everyone there would be no cancellations. "These are professional, not social, events," he said.

Well, at least the shows are not without their heights of glory. "Princess Margaret was at Anouska Hempel's show and she had the most elaborate hairdo," reports a Hempel guest from London. "I've never seen it so high."

Chain Reaction

An internist in Bethesda is selling Desert Storm dog tags that she "hopes will appeal to people of all ages with a feeling of national pride." Sandra Gailitis says the idea for imprinting regulation dog tags with the code name of the U.S. mission in Saudi Arabia, as well as the date of the first air assaults, was "a spur of the moment thing." She didn't expect that critics would find them opportunistic. "I thought they would be very inspirational ... more positive than buying gas masks and water purification tablets," she counters. She says she's looking for a war-related charity to which she can donate some of the proceeds. The double tags on a chain, priced around $15, are available at local Dapy and Made in America stores. They can also be ordered by calling 301-229-0867.

Little by Little

Hecht's will host the Washington premiere of Dyan Cannon's new film "The End of Innocence" on Feb. 4 with an appearance by Cannon and her costume designer, Carole Little, better known for her easy sportswear. The 7 p.m. screening will be at the Loew's 8 Theater at Tysons Corner, followed by a reception in the Carole Little department at Hecht's. As it happens, Little's husband, Leonard Rabinowitz, was the executive producer on the film. Tickets are $20 and proceeds go to Second Genesis, a residential drug and alcohol treatment program in Washington. For reservations, call 301-656-1545.

Milan What?

Lost amid the war news were the Italian menswear collections. Did anyone care that aqua is the new blue in Milan? That big plaids are back? Well now you know. Catching up on the fall male news: Nubbier knits and plushier fabrics are popular. The slouchy look of softer-constructed suits, bordering on sloppy last season, has narrowed a bit through the middle. Kalman Ruttenstein, fashion director at Bloomingdale's, notes a penchant for "strange, new mixes of blue, like aqua with teal, perhaps done best at Armani." There's also a rush on winter white, he says.

Anderson McNeill, divisional merchandising manager for Britches, was at the Florence menswear shows and says "they were jammed with buyers, mostly German and Italian." He liked the aquamarine influence but predicts subtler shades of slate for Washington customers. Other trends are more three-button jackets (buttoned high at Romeo Gigli), snowflake ski sweaters, crepe weaves, louder plaids (especially from Gianni Versace) and nut buttons, which McNeill has ordered for clothes manufactured by Britches.

On Ice

Anyone who's seen Vanilla Ice on television lately -- and who hasn't -- probably noticed his expressive leather jackets. They're made by Jeff Hamilton, a Los Angeles designer who has turned such leather missives as "Freedom Without Fear" and "Global Love" into a celebrity-driven business. Aside from Ice, Hamilton makes custom jackets for George Michael, Andrew Dice Clay, Cher, Bobby Brown and New Kids on the Block. "I saw Vanilla Ice at the Beverly Center {mall} and just introduced myself," says Hamilton. "I met the New Kids way before they became famous." The rest is history, right?

Actually, Hamilton tapped into patriotism -- flags, maps and Uncle Sam -- about three years ago, just as Americana was becoming kitsch. Now it makes a political statement. His all-leather jackets, each pieced with images or slogans, are priced from $1,000 to $5,000, and more for special orders. Neiman Marcus, Boogies and Up Against the Wall carry his line, which also includes cheaper denim jackets. A leather-trimmed denim version of his "Freedom Without Fear" jacket will be in stores in about two months, priced at $300.