All Articles Tagged "Vogue"
It seems like Kanye West is running a how-many-times-can-I-put-my-foot-in-my-mouth-in-one-week marathon. Just yesterday we told you that the “Gold Digger” singer admitted to waiting through several of Kim Kardashian’s relationships to marry her. Now, he’s insisting that his reality TV star boo is more fashionably influential than Michelle Obama. His rant began with voiced concerns about Kim having never appeared on the cover of Vogue Magazine.
“There’s no way Kim Kardashian shouldn’t be on the cover of Vogue. She’s like the most intriguing woman right now. She’s got Barbara Walters calling her like everyday,” Kanye said during an interview with Ryan Seacrest.
He went on to say that Kim is more influential in fashion than Mrs. Obama because Mrs. O could never tweet a bikini selfie like his girl, Kim.
“And collectively, we’re the most influential with clothing. No one is looking at what [Barack Obama] is wearing. Michelle Obama cannot Instagram a [bikini] pic like what my girl Instagrammed the other day,” he continued.
“[Former French Vogue editor] CarineRoitfeld supports my girl. That’s a breakthrough,” he explained. “There’s a wall of classism that we are breaking through,” he added.
Oh Kanye, please get a clue.
If you’ve had the pleasure of seeing 12 Years A Slave, you’ve seen Lupita Nyong’o (pronounced lew-PEET-tuh en-YON-go– thanks Slate.) but we doubt you know a bit of her backstory. Luckily, the Kenyan born actress sat down with Vogue to discuss a multitude of topics, including how she came to acting, her documentary about albinism, In My Genes and how she had to learn to see herself as black in America. The woman is physically stunning but her opinions and experiences are interesting and engaging as well. I found myself hanging on her every word in the video. Check out a few excerpts from the video below.
How she fell in love with acting
“I remember wanting to be an actor from the age of like 5. My family was really performative. We used to perform at family gatherings and stuff. But what actually did it for me was watching The Color Purple. When I saw Whoopi Goldberg and she looked like me. And I was like ‘Oh, I could do this.’ I could do this for a living.’ And that’s when I feel it really became a bug.
On her albinism documentary and learning to consider herself black
For my undergrad, I studied film studies and African studies as well. And I wanted to make a documentary because I had never tried to do a thing like that at school. And the subject that I chose was albinism in Kenya because I knew a person with albinism and I didn’t know anything about her experience. And I found myself feeling shame for not understanding someone that I considered to be my friend. And albinism in particular was an interesting subject because they’re the one group of people that unify all races. Having come to the United States was the first time that I really had to consider myself as being black and to learn what my race meant. Because race is such an important part of understanding American society.
Her role in 12 Years A Slave
One of the reasons why I enjoy acting is because it gives me a chance to experience circumstances and lives that I would otherwise not have the opportunity to experience. I enjoy being able to take on different social, economic and cultural backgrounds. So when I was given this opportunity to play this woman, a slave from a time that really is not part of my everyday life, it was such a gift as an actor to be able to lend myself to that kind of story.
Do yourself a favor and go ahead and watch the video. I know Lupita is far more than a pretty face but we would be remiss if we didn’t mention how utterly flawless she looks in this video. The poise and posture, her insight and beauty radiate eloquence and elegance.
Let’s be honest, if Vogue called you today and asked to profile and photograph you in the next issue, chances are most of us would say yes. It’s a highly prestigious publication and hopefully you’ll come out looking flawless, as Yahoo CEO, Marissa Mayer, looks in the photo above. And though no one is doubting that she looks good in the photo, many are taking issue with the pose calling it unprofessional and maybe even anti-feminist.
Before I’d seen the picture, listening to my coworkers talk about the image, I just knew that Marissa was going to be baring her breasts or rocking a thigh-high split. But when I finally saw the picture, I was shocked to see just how much of a non-issue it seemed to be. She’s appropriately dressed but she’s laying down, arguably not a traditional position for a profile of a CEO.
And perhaps this is what people have a problem with. Comments from folks over at CNN seem to suggest that Mayer set women back by posing like this.
“We fight so hard to be where we are and prove that it wasn’t our cute bodies, perky boobs or cute face that got us there. Shame on you Marissa Mayer for playing into stereotypes.” – Anna Nicole Moose on CNN’s Facebook page.
“I can’t think of the last time a men’s magazine chose to profile a CEO by asking him to sprawl out on a couch. When, let’s say, GQ or Esquire is profiling someone on this level, they’re not asking them to unbutton their shirt and pose suggestively with any kinds of props.”
In an interview, Mayer herself seemed to be embarrassed by questions concerning the photo shoot. She said the pose was “unplanned” and “out of necessity.” She admitted that she had her reservations about the pose but the photographer, Mikael Jansson, assured her it would look good. His assignment was to capture an unconventional CEO in an unconventional pose and he certainly did that.
While a part of me understands their concerns and Marissa’s reservations, a bigger part of me finds it to be counterproductive to the whole feminist agenda. Does Marissa look sexay in this shoot? Sure. But does that mean she relied on her physical appearance to become the CEO of Yahoo? I doubt it. Please ask about Marissa. A quick Wikipedia scan will show you she graduated with honors from Stanford University, went on to become Google’s first female engineer and as President and CEO of Yahoo, she’s managed to acquire Tumblr and report a rise in profits compared to last year. And then to top it all off, the stock prices for the company doubled since her appointment. I highly doubt she was able to pull all of this off because of her looks. But furthermore, why can’t a person, a woman, be attractive, smart and accomplished at the same damn time? Being pretty doesn’t negate your intelligence.
And this is a huge glitch in the whole feminism thing for me. Sure I agree that women and men should be treated equally. But can we please stop pretending that men and women are the same? We’re not. Mayer is a woman, she has breasts, shapely legs and curves. Should she cover them in an ill fitted pant suit and sit behind a desk like every other male CEO just to prove she’s as qualified as a man? Uhh no. She’s a woman and perhaps her experience as one allows her to bring atypical and apparently effective strategies to running Yahoo.
So is it wrong that she be lounging in the pages of Vogue in a blue Michael Kors dress? I don’t think so. As one of my coworkers noted, if I were voted one of the most powerful businesswomen by Fortune Magazine, were in the process of turning Yahoo’s outdated image around and had defied misogyny to climb the corporate ladder, I’d be lounging like a bawse as well.
André Leon Talley Says Russell Simmons Shouldn’t Have Been Front Row At NYFW After His Harriet Tubman Sex Tape
Around this time last month, Russell Simmons was catching hell for his new YouTube channel “All Def Digital” and the decision they made to put out the “Harriet Tubman Sex Tape.” The clip tried to imply as a joke that Harriet Tubman had sex with her master and taped it in order to blackmail him so that she could be able to start the Underground Railroad. That didn’t go over well whatsoever, and in the end, Russell Simmons apologized for the channel’s decision to post the video, though he claimed that he initially thought the video was funny…
As the man who once brought the world Phat Farm (and in turn, Baby Phat), Simmons can often be seen at New York Fashion Week shows rubbing elbows with other famous folks, and he was at a few shows this past week. But since he’s done that Harriet Tubman skit, some people weren’t too happy to see him at NYFW this time around, including André Leon Talley, the former editor-at-large for Vogue. In fact, he felt that Simmons should have been banned because of the poor taste of that Harriet Tubman clip. Here’s what he told TheGrio:
“I think anyone that is a person of achievement on the front row that has achieved a great deal be they black or white is a good thing.
I don’t think Russell Simmons should be seated on anybody’s front row this week after having done that disgusting Harriet Tubman sex tape. He is a man of great achievement. He is a great philanthropist….why would he think it would be an honorable thing to do? He said he thought it was funny. That is not funny it is outrageously disrespectful to the legacy and history of Harriet Tubman and to the struggle.”
I think we can all agree that it was in poor taste, but should he not be allowed to sit front row with all the other big things Simmons has done philanthropically? Let us know what you think.
Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week arrived in all of its well-heeled, perfectly-accessorized splendor last week and with it, a flurry of blog posts, tweets and even New York Times articles. But for the first time in four years, the first Thursday of fall Fashion Week passed without a Fashion’s Night Out in New York. The brainchild of Anna Wintour, FNO launched during the 2009 recession in NYC, and “had expanded to stores in over 500 cities nationwide and 30 cities around the globe,” according to WWD.
Last year, the “powers that be” (Vogue, the CFDA and NYC & Co., that is) all decided to pull the plug on FNO. According to Steve Kolb, the chief executive officer of the CFDA, “[After each FNO] we would always return to what was our original mission and purpose and that was to reinvigorate the shopping experience and the consumers’ engagement in stores. After this last one, we felt we had really created this renewed presence at retail that really brought added value and a fun experience back to shopping.”
Goodbye to free cocktails, dance parties with DJs and celebrity appearances by everyone from Victoria Beckham and Nicole Richie, to Pharrell and Kanye West.
Notice that I wrote “goodbye” — not “adios,” “sayonara,” or even “ciao” (which would be much more apropos in the fashion world).
That is because the FNO party train only stopped in the U.S. this year. Here in the States, tweets like those of attorney and TV commentator Midwin Charles proliferated my timeline: “Dearest fashionistas: what the hell happened to Fashion Night Out???????? #FNO #RIP #NYFW”.
Elsewhere though, the #FNO hoopla was in full effect. Christian Louboutin posted a pic of its latest shoe, the camo Keny. There were pictures and commentary from attendees at FNO parties thrown by Vogue Germany and Vogue India and even Vogue Australia. Additional tweets indicated FNO festivities in France, Brasil, Hong Kong and South Africa.
Contrary to popular belief, it would seem that Fashion’s Night Out is alive and thriving. In fact, Nicky Eaton of Condé Nast International confirmed to WWD that “19 countries will be participating in 2013. Thailand and Ukraine will be hosting FNO for the first time.” But nothing in the United States?
The cause of FNO’s stateside demise may have been fiscally-based – at least in part. Started during the recession, FNO’s goal of stimulating revenue was apparently not met. There were no discounts in conjunction with the event so those who found Louis Vuitton prices exorbitant on any other day did not have a change of heart just because it was FNO. Additionally, the ubiquitous champagne flutes — which initially may have been introduced as a way to loosen purse strings — soon became synonymous with the best places to party for free at FNO.
Year after year, the event became less retail and more social. Crowds grew and began spilling into the streets. When boutiques closed, crowds did not dissipate. Instead, they grew restless looking for food, entertainment and of course, more drinks. Last year, the copious amounts of free alcohol and the sizable crowds led to a small riot in Soho. “I guess that’s what happens when you gather an enormous crowd, get them drunk… and then remind them that they can’t afford any of the pretty things that you’re waving in their faces,” says blogger Beth Hammarlund.
Kolb and others can sugarcoat it, but bad behavior appears to be the real reason that Fashion’s Night Out was cancelled indefinitely here in the U.S. A free party in the name of fashion was not the original intent of the FNO sponsors. Here in the States though, that is what it became. The fact that FNO went on as scheduled in some countries, and even made its debut in others, indicates that the event is still worthwhile in the eyes of its creators. But like a party guest who overstays their welcome, as Americans, our party privileges have simply been revoked.
Karen J. Francis is a freelance writer and media attorney living in New York City. Please follow her on Twitter @karebelle.
“Look at all of these rumors surroundin’ me every day.” That, ladies was a warning, a disclaimer if you will, that the following information is speculative. But judging by the off-ness that is Kimye, I personally, wouldn’t be surprised if it were true.
So, the story goes that Kanye wants to reveal the first public baby photos of little North West on the cover of Vogue. If you’ve followed Kanye’s career, you know that Kanye is big on fashion and particularly Anna Wintour. The two have been photographed chatting it up on several occasions and he’s even shouted her out in his song “Way Too Cold”:
Dinner with Anna Wintour, racing with Anja Rubik
I told you ma’f**kers it was more than the music
In the projects one day, to Project Runway
We done heard all that loud-A$$ talking, we’re used to it
I’m from where shorties f**ked up, double-cupped up
Might even kill somebody and YouTube it
To whoever think their words affect me is too stupid
And if you can do it better than me, then you do it!
But I digress. A source told RadarOnline that “It’s also pretty well known that Anna is no fan of Kim, or any reality star appearing in the pages of the magazine.”
Kanye wants North to be photographed by a professional photographer and featured on the cover of the magazine than be captured by the paparazzi and plastered all over the blogs. And even many speculate that the couple will release the first pictures of North via Twitter, Kanye is not trying to hear the word “no,” even though Anna has already sent a “less than enthusiastic response.”
He’s not giving up though. Instead, Kanye has been collecting fashion magazine statistics to show that featuring reality stars on the cover can significantly increase sales. (And if this is indeed the case, he wouldn’t be wrong. The April issue of Cosmopolitan, featuring Kim Kardashian, was the magazine’s best selling at 1.2 million copies being snatched from newsstands.
Still it’ll be a hard sell. Perhaps, Kanye is forgetting–or maybe he didn’t know– how Vogue editors conveniently cropped Kim Kardashian out of the Met Ball’s Best Dressed gallery. (They were featuring West but didn’t want to include Kim.)
Alas, all of this could be heresy considering a Vogue spokesperson said “There have been no discussions of putting baby North in Vogue.”
I guess we won’t ever know the truth about this one unless Kanye snags the cover; and since Anna Wintour doesn’t seem the type to compromise, I doubt it’ll happen.
Do you believe this rumor? Do you think it would be a good idea for Vogue to feature baby North and Kim by proxy on the cover?
September magazine issues are always huge, but this year Condé Nast is celebrating with its biggest September issue of Vogue in five years, which could be a sign the print magazine industry is coming back.
Last year, the fashion bible weighed in last year at 658 ad pages; this year, publisher Susan Plagemann added one percentage point for a total of 665 total ad pages, reports Ad Age. And it’s not just the September issue that has grown. Four issues in a row have gotten larger and September 2013 is Vogue’s third largest issue ever. The record-breaker was 2007 with 725 ad pages, followed by 2008, which had 674. Both totals, however, included the now-discontinued Fashion Rocks supplement. Jennifer Lawrence will be on the cover this year.
Vogue isn’t the only magazine on the upswing. Time Inc.’s InStyle, which historically is a close second to Vogue, has 455 pages. Publisher Karin Tracy, who came on board from Entertainment Weekly in May, tweeted that the September issue was its largest-ever. Sister title People StyleWatch, up three percent with 190 ad pages, had its largest issue ever.
Across the board, Condé Nast is reporting its strongest September in five years. “Glamour reversed course from September 2012 with a sizable 18 percent gain, closing this year’s issue with 224 total ad pages. W and Teen Vogue will have their best September issues in five years, with 288 ad pages (up 17 percent) and 162 ad pages (up 12 percent), respectively,” reports the magazine. Allure was also up 12 percent to 147.
For other publications, it was a mixed bag. Bon Appétit increased an incredible 49 percent to 91 pages. Details gained six percent, to 148 pages. Lucky, which had a change in editors, increased just one percent for a total of 137 pages. GQ also only saw a one percent increase, with 205 ad pages.
Though this is all great news for the media industry the lack of people of color on the September issues is glaring. There seems to be no attempt to attract African-American consumers.
Putting this blatant omission aside, readers are also turning to the Web. Vogue Web traffic has increased. “In the second quarter of 2013, page views on Vogue.com were up 21 percent year over year (85 percent of that audience is people who aren’t regular Vogue readers, per MRI), while revenue is up 32 percent year to date,” reports Ad Age.
Summer is on the cusp of its sweltering climax which means one thing: September issues are around the corner. If you work in publishing you already know what a big deal September is. Those issues aren’t hefty for no reason. September is a fresh start. A new season complete with new fashions that need to be rolled out to the public. This equals more ads and more revenue for magazines. It’s a lucrative time for the industry. Naturally, they want to show advertisers that the issue they invest the most in reaps the rewards of high readership. Perhaps it’s this performance anxiety that encourages the publishing industry to cling to old values when fall comes around.
Women’s Wear Daily has a round up of what we’ll see on the newsstands next month. “For fall, fashion titles are banking on reliable bestsellers with all-American sex appeal and relatability, and TV starlets — and almost everyone is playing catch-up with those celebrities who have already done the other cover rounds,” it reads. Movie stars (Jennifer Lawrence for Vogue), supermodels (Kate Upton for Elle), and television darlings (Zooey Deschanel for Marie Claire) are all accounted for. But for all-American sex appeal to be the theme, a significant portion of the country goes unrepresented. Where are the women of color?
Historically, the publishing industry has viewed women of color as risky cover girls. Publishers are internally vocal that Middle Americans won’t buy magazines that don’t feature White women. In 2002 the New York Times treated Halle Berry’s cover of the December issue of Cosmopolitan magazine as a miracle. David Carr wrote “in many broad-circulation magazines, the unspoken but routinely observed practice of not using nonwhite cover subjects — for fear they will depress newsstand sales — remains largely in effect.”
But the industry wouldn’t hold on to this dated thinking in 2013, would they? Publishers can’t really think Americans are more comfortable checking a Black person’s name on their voting ballot than seeing their face on their coffee table, can they?
Politics aside, women of color are among the top influencers in pop culture. Forbes‘ 2013 Celebrity 100, a list that gauges fame based on media mentions, Internet presence, and celebrities are viewed by American consumers, features four women of color in the top 20 slots. Oprah Winfrey tops the list, Beyonce comes in at number four, and Jennifer Lopez and Rihanna rank 12th and 13th respectively.
You wouldn’t know women of color were banking this kind of social currency based on 2013′s September issues.
Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of fashion bible Vogue magazine, was just given a big promotion — named the artistic director for all of Conde Nast, the publishing company behind that and many other notable magazines. According to The New York Times, the position was created for her as a way to keep her at the company and to fulfill the duties that are slowly being relinquished by the company’s 85-year-old head, S.I. Newhouse Jr. She told the Times that she views the new position as “almost like being a one-person consulting firm,” giving her the ability to work with other editors outside of Vogue and Teen Vogue.
In his role, the paper says, Si Newhouse would look over the covers of some of the company’s magazines, including Vanity Fair and Glamour. And Wintour says the role is one that will be much like one she fills now, talking with people in the broader industry about their ideas. If you’ve seen The September Issue, you’ve probably marveled at the level of influence that she has on top designers and retailers. The specifics of the new position haven’t been mapped out, but the position does make her “one of the most powerful women in publishing.”
So congratulations Anna! Except, people are already buzzing with “concern.”
“We have a lot of autonomy as editors … No one wants to see that go away. People need a little more clarity,” an unnamed source tells WWD. (via NYMag.com) Another says that the competition between the magazines could get in the way.
The way it’s framed in the Times article, having someone look over their work should be something that the editors at Conde are used to. So a part of me wonders if Wintour’s reputation is getting ahead of her. People are already “worried,” but she’s not even a day into the position? And given her success with Vogue magazine and the problems in the media industry, wouldn’t you welcome the chance for a little counsel from a woman who’s at the top of her game? Who’s hanging out with the President and First Lady and a leader of one of the biggest nights in New York society, the Met Museum’s Costume Institute Gala?
A part of me feels like this is a reaction to a powerful woman being given a little more power. What do you think?
WORK! Michelle Obama Covers Vogue And President Obama Speaks On How Loving Her Made Him A Better Man
Michelle…you better work!
The First Lady of the United States is looking regal and fabulous on the April issue of Vogue, her second cover to commemorate another four years of the fierce fashionista that is Michelle Obama. On the cover of the mag, you can see her in a gorgeous Reed Krakoff dress and diamond-drop earrings, sitting on a table with her bangin’ bangs and bright smile. As for inside the issue, Michelle and President Obama open up about their family, their relationship and their critics. The latter including people who like to claim that the First Family is more antisocial than those of past, not extending invitations to kick it at the White House to those with opposing ideas in office in Washington, but Michelle makes it clear that while they don’t mind rubbing elbows with who they need to, that’s definitely one of their main priorities:
“Our job is, first and foremost, to make sure our family is whole. You know, we have small kids; they’re growing every day. But I think we were both pretty straightforward when we said, ‘Our number-one priority is making sure that our family is whole.’
“The stresses and the pressures of this job are so real that when you get a minute, you want to give that extra energy to your fourteen- and eleven-year-old. . . .”
Michelle also talks about the man her husband is, and why he’s so damn cool–aka, relatable for many people:
“I’ve tried to explain this guy to people over the years, but there is a calmness to him that is just . . . it has been a consistent part of his character. Which is why I think he is uniquely suited for this challenge—because there is a steadiness. And maybe it’s because of his Hawaiian upbringing—you go to Hawaii and it’s Chillsville; maybe it was because his life growing up was a little less steady, so he had to create that steadiness for himself . . . but he is that person, in all situations, over the course of these last four years, from watching the highs and lows of health-care reform to dealing with two very contentious, challenging elections. . . . The most you get from him is ‘You know, that is gonna be tough. . . .’ There are a lot of times I can’t tell how his day went. Unless I really dig down. Because when he walks through that door, he can let go of it all. And it just doesn’t penetrate his soul. And that’s the beautiful thing for me to see as his wife. That was one of the things I was worried about: How would politics affect this very decent, genuine, noble individual? And there is just something about his spirit that allows all that stuff to stay on the outside.”
I also love the back and forth between these two, as they talk in the interview about the early struggles in their marriage of getting adjusted to each other’s personalities, but how years together have made them better people. And funny people too:
POTUS: “There’s no doubt I’m a better man having spent time with Michelle. I would never say that Michelle’s a better woman, but I will say she’s a little more patient.”
FLOTUS: “I would say I’m a better woman. You couldn’t say it.”
POTUS: “I couldn’t say it,” he says.
FLOTUS: The First Lady looks at me: “It’s good that he learned not to say that.” And then turns and looks at him and smiles. “Don’t say that.”
*Sigh* I just think they’re amazing. And the article about the couple in April’s Vogue is pretty amazing too, as it gives a behind-the-scenes look at what goes on in the White House and how they as a couple keep their heads with the spotlight constantly on their every move. They already came off as very human and relatable, but the article make you appreciate their down-to-earth personalities even more. Pick up the new issue when it hits newsstands on March 26.
Photos courtesy of Vogue by Annie Leibovitz