Vogue isn’t exactly known for its sensitivity to, um, sensitive issues, and that’s fine. It is, after all, a fashion and society magazine, not The Atlantic. But every once in a while the international publication comes at us with something controversial, something so tone-deaf (see: longtime contributor Joan Juliet Buck’s complimentary portrait of Syrian first lady Asma al-Assad just prior to the Arab Spring) that the public at large just can’t help but take note. As for this Hurricane Sandy-inspired editorial, which was just released today, I can’t decide where I stand: am I cool with it because they’re honoring the first responders and other such “heroes,” or am I outraged because a) they’ve juxtaposed top models in designer dresses with members from the neonatal ICU at Bellevue Hospital who were forced to evacuate their patients when a backup generator gave out or b) people are still suffering from the impact of the storm? Well, I’m not easily offended (I don’t think), and Vogue and the CFDA did in fact raise close to $2 million for relief efforts… So I don’t know. It’s not glaringly irresponsible, it’s just, as one commenter put it, “kinda tasteless.” What do you think? [Fashionista]
“I understand the desire to make a child feel beautiful at any weight. I truly advocate for size acceptance. The culture of body image upsets me and has tortured me personally. I do think we should be able to be different sizes but I draw the line at when it starts affecting her health.”
– Dara-Lynn Weiss, who was ostracized after she published an article in Vogue all about putting her seven-year-old daughter Bea on a diet. Weiss has a new book out, titled The Heavy, which expands upon that article. Here, she attempts to explain why she put her child on a diet. Elsewhere in the NYMag.com interview, Weiss notes that she was afraid of giving her daughter a complex because of her own discomfort with food. But she also painstakingly explains that the Vogue photos were misleading, because they don’t show Bea’s midsection, and how fat she really is. UGH.
If nothing else, this interview — which focuses heavily on Weiss’s own body issues — sheds light on the vicious cycle of body image problems that mothers pass down to children. Will you give The Heavy a read? [NYMag.com]
Vaunted Vogue editor Andre Leon Talley doesn’t suffer fools — either at his magazine job, or as a former judge on ”America’s Next Top Model.” Which is why it’s so sweet to see him shuffle so uncomfortably in his interview with pint-sized “Beasts of the Southern Wild” phenom Quvenzhané Wallis. Talley had the nine-year-old Nicki Minaj fan over to the office to discuss pop music, puppies and the color pink.
Fei Fei Sun, a strikingly beautiful Chinese model who has appeared in campaigns for Calvin Klein and Louis Vuitton, made history this week when she became the first Asian model to appear alone on the cover of Vogue Italia. To Fei Fei, I say “Congratulations!” To Vogue Italia, I say, “About damn time!” Click on the gallery to check out some more photos from Sun’s gorgeous spread, shot by Steven Meisel. [Vogue Italia via People]
There are some things in life that just belong together. For instance: Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup, Chad Kroeger and Avril Lavigne. I’ve only been to Walmart once, when I accompanied my then-boyfriend to purchase a Bear Grylls-brand camping knife, but the politically conservative megastore definitely did not strike me as the sort that would have any feasible tie to liberal-leaning publishing goliath and Anna Wintour employer Condé Nast. And yet! Beauty Scoop, Wal-Mart’s 12-page editorial “shopazine,” exists, and it features original pieces from editors of familiar Condé glossies like Allure, Glamour, and Lucky. Keep reading »
So much has been said about Anna “Nuclear” Wintour, but she doesn’t seem to say much herself. The longtime Vogue editor-in-chief conducts herself just about as privately as it gets, so when rumors flew last summer that she was in the process of writing a memoir, we had our doubts. After all, the woman only gives an interview once in a blue moon (and even then, it’s only in the interest of her magazine), let alone a tell-all book. In a rare move, Wintour took to Telegraph this week to talk everything from her father (the editor of the London Evening Standard newspaper) to her creative director and contemporary Grace Coddington’s new read. But here’s what you really want to know: what does she really look for in a potential hire? The answer might surprise you.
“I look for strong people,” she says of her staff. “I don’t like people who’ll say yes to everything I might bring up. I want people who can argue, and disagree, and have a point of view that’s reflected in the magazine. My dad believed in the cult of personality. He brought great writers and columnists to the Standard. I try to do that here, too.”
More highlights from the interview, after the jump… Keep reading »