Franca Sozzani excels at many things. She is the long-standing editor-in-chief of Vogue Italia and, in 1994, she was even made the editor-in-chief of Condé Nast Italia in its entirety. She is acknowledged as a contemporary and collaborator to, among others, Steven Meisel, Bruce Weber, Peter Lindbergh, and Paolo Roversi, unarguably the most influential fashion photographers of the past two decades. She is credited as the driving force, alongside Meisel, behind the groundbreaking “supermodel” movement in the ’90s. Last year, she launched Vogue Curvy, a branch of the magazine’s Italian edition geared towards plus-sized women. Sozzani has accomplished a great variety of things, but despite her apparent devotion to targeting her publication towards a medley of body shapes and sizes, she herself champions thinness. It’s a true study in contradiction: she encourages others to appropriate acceptance of all body types, but at the bottom line, the girls that land the coveted cover of her magazine — not to mention Sozzani herself — are built like greyhounds.
Which brings me to my point: Vogue Italia has a history, more so than any other Vogue publication, of promoting the emaciated look, so why, in the name of all that is good and holy (which is nothing, these days), did Franca Sozzani, notorious for her use of strikingly thin models, give a speech about anorexia, obesity, and body image at Harvard?
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The gods of fashion have spoken: André Leon Talley, the former Vogue editor-at-large more recently recognized for his position on the judging panel of “America’s Next Top Model,” will be receiving his very own reality show on Bravo. Finally! ALT, without a doubt one of the most endearingly excellent personalities in fashion, will be the subject of a series tentatively titled “Fashion Stories” of NYC in which he acts a “mentor” to four enterprising fashion design teams as they “produce the defining collection of their careers” while striving to “create, show, and sell,” with the ultimate goal of building and maintaining a legitimate business in New York City. As NY Mag rightfully pointed out, the premise of the show does sound like an amalgamation of many fashion reality shows we’ve already seen… but man, who cares about that when André’s at the helm? I would happily watch a show in which he sat chair-bound for 30 minutes. For now, let’s just hope some of his industry pals make a cameo — like, say, Grace Coddington? Hey, just a suggestion. [The Cut]
By now, many of you may have read Vogue’s annual “Shape” issue and had some reaction to the story of Bea, a seven-year-old girl whose mother was intent on curing her “obesity,” which was, in reality, 16 extra pounds of baby fat.
“One day Bea came home from school in tears, confessing that a boy at school had called her fat. The incident crushed me, but it was a wake-up call. Being overweight is not a private struggle. Everyone can see it,” said Bea’s mother, Dara-Lynn Weiss.
Weiss immediately put Bea on a Weight Watchers-type diet designed for children. Reading this, I felt a familiar pang in my gut. I was also an overweight child who came home from school and complaining about being teased. It was fifth grade, and I was the new kid in school. I didn’t know I was overweight until one of the popular boys spit on my new pair of Vans and called me “fat ass.” The girls were even worse. They attacked me in the bathroom with a barrage of spitballs. I spent most of the school year alone, writing in my journal. There’s one heartbreaking entry I’ll never forget: Dear Diary, Please let me be popular. Please let me not be fat anymore.
Although I’ve moved on and healed from these experiences, which happened more than 20 years ago, it still hurts to write about them. They’re a reminder of how cruel people can be, perhaps without even meaning to. What’s more painful for me, though, is remembering how my mother reacted to these incidents. Keep reading »
Last week, Anna Wintour attended a luncheon at the State Department in honor of Prime Minister David Cameron, and like any visitor to a prestigious event at a serious government building, she rocked a pair of dark shades inside. I’m a little surprised she wasn’t arrested for such a blatant display of fierceness, but I’m sure even the guards were like, “Damn, girl. Do your thing.”
A couple of weeks ago, we showed you the GIFs Steven Meisel created as a teaser for this spread, which will be featured in Vogue Italia’s April issue. The usual cover girls are in some distinctly unusual ensembles, poses, and situations, and it seems to have stirred up a bit of controversy. The publication alleges that the shoot was inspired by drag queens, but others, like Vibe, are calling racism. I would say questionable taste, yes, but not racism, especially after reading the accompanying description. What’s your opinion? Mine is that both photographer Steven Meisel and makeup artist Pat McGrath, who did the faces, are complete criminal geniuses. This editorial is all kinds of progressive. [Fashionista]
Never thought you’d see a supermodel with the track of her weave showing, did you? Famed photographer and (in my opinion) total creative genius Steven Meisel is already known for his exceptionally provocative work (see: his fantastic “Supermodels Enter Rehab” editorial), but he’s taken it a step further with a preview for Vogue Italia‘s spring fashion issue called “Haute Mess,” a series of insane, hypnotizing, and vaguely nauseating GIFs. Read more — and see the GIFs — after the jump… Keep reading »
Tobias Fünke, take note: Nicki Minaj has gone and gotten herself thoroughly blued. She’s a touch more greenish than Tobias, so I don’t suppose she’ll be much of a threat to his very important role in the Blue Man Group. I actually think it looks nice on Nicki, especially with her pastel pink hair, but no word yet on the reason behind this skin color switch … aside from Vogue, of course. She’s really doing her best to pass Gaga on the road to Crazytown, huh? [Refinery29]
Will we ever hear the end of Lana del Rey? She’s been suspiciously absent from Fashion Week, and I thought for sure that her “Saturday Night Live” performance would finish the singer off for good, but the past few weeks have proven me wrong: not only has she landed a Vogue UK cover, but there’s reason to believe that LDR may be about to officially hit the scene as a fashion darling. Lana, who’s notedly less “gangster Nancy Sinatra” and more “I went to boarding school in upstate Connecticut” (she actually did) birth name is Elizabeth Woolridge Grant, will be escorted by this year’s CFDA/Vogue Fashion fund winner, Joseph Altuzarra, to the Met Gala. Um, yeah, kind of a big deal. I can’t hate only because I really love the sartorial statements Lana/her team have made in the past — luxe fur coats + glittering gowns + Mulberry bags = my kind of girl. Hey, as long as she leaves her ridiculous diamond tooth cap at home, things will go over just fine. [Fashionista]
“I love a bit of drama. That’s a bad thing. I can flip really quickly. I am not bipolar, but I go from ‘Oh, my God, I love you’ to ‘Get the fuck out of my house!’ really quickly. And I never sit there and talk about it. I give them the silent treatment. They’re like, ‘Tell me what I’ve done so I can say sorry!’ What else? It used to be that I loved a drink a bit too much. But I don’t drink no more. The good things: I am attentive. I will do anything for my man. I am a good cook. I’m funny. Always want to have sex.”
Further proof Adele is a girl after our own heart. (As if we needed it.) She also pronounces with the word “f**k” as “fack,” insists she is “wifey material,” and says she will never write another breakup album again because “I’m done with being a bitter witch.” LOVE. HER. [Vogue]
Hot off her sweep at the Grammy Awards last night, Adele’s Vogue cover and photo shoot has hit the web and, my god, is it glorious. While I’m sure there will be plenty of talk about whether the mag “slimmed” the plus-size chanteuse, I think, for all intents and purposes, she looks wonderfully like herself. Click through a bunch of the photos shot by Mert Alas an Marcus Piggoti in this slideshow. [Vogue]