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12-02-2011
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American Vogue - Passť?
It's New York Fashion Week once again and as I observe the collections, the fashionistas, photographers, models, editors, stylists etc I couldn't help thinking of the business of fashion and where the industry is now as compared to that era of the "supers." I also thought about the power players in the industry and the so-called fashion magazines especially in light of what just happened to Vogue Paris editor-in-chief Carine Roitfeld. We all know that Anna Wintour is one of the most powerful players in the fashion industry, but I can't help but ask myself why? Sure we have to give credit when due and we all know that she played an instrumental role in the magazine when she just came in but years later, Vogue US has become one of the stalest magazines on the stands. The constant celebrity covers and content about them has made the magazine synanymous with the trashiness that is Star Magazine. How much fashion talk is incorporated into each issue? How is it that she doesn't see the need to showcase fashion from other parts of the world - middle-eastern, asian, caribbean etc? The fashion industry has a fundamental impact on the economy and vice versa, fashion is also a form of art, yet Vogue with it's cheesy and uninspired editorials cannot find a way to marry that into an editorial that is both educational to people and beautiful to look at.

Why then was Carine Roitfeld fired for one bad issue, which by the way still managed to put Vogue US to shame and why is it that Wintour is still around after many absolutely terrible issues that was lacking and left much to be desired? I hope for a true fashion magazine which highlights fashion in various forms and fashion from around the world. A magazine with inspired editorials, beautiful pictures, real models, newsworthy content that are educational etc. Until then, like my fellow friends, i'm canceling my Vogue US subscription and will continue reading Vogue Italia because unlike Ms. Wintour, Franca Sozzani continues to do a wonderful job as editor-in-chief of Vogue Italia. The only magazine damn near close enough to being called a true fashion magazine.

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12-02-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Modelo View Post
why is it that Wintour is still around after many absolutely terrible issues that was lacking and left much to be desired?
I don't know. I really think people overstate how bad Vogue US is and for the last year it's been improving. It's still better than most other editions of Vogue out there. Also, it has a different audience than Vogue Paris and Vogue Italia.

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How is it that she doesn't see the need to showcase fashion from other parts of the world - middle-eastern, asian, caribbean etc?
Neither Vogue Paris and Italia do this as well.


Last edited by blueorchid; 12-02-2011 at 02:15 PM.
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12-02-2011
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The magazine has improved very slightly over the years, but given all the hype surrounding teh magazine it should have been much better. Also, while Vogue italia and paris does not showcase fashion from other parts of the world, neither editors have the power that Anna Wintour has.

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12-02-2011
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What hype surrounding the magazine?

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12-02-2011
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umm that it is VOGUE?!! That it can make or break a person's career in fashion whether it is the model, designer, photographer etc... That it is THE magazine to be featured in, and i can go on and on...

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12-02-2011
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But that's not "hype" that's just the reputation of the magazine.

I think people expect too much from Vogue US. They expect it to be everything for everyone when that's really not the goal of it.

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12-02-2011
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I don't know, Vogue Paris started going bad when US Vogue started getting better... I think the latter has been so much better for some time now. The continuing US Vogue-sucks crowd must not have cracked open the magazine the past year or two. The layout is fresh, the styling and editorials have become less stiff and conservative, and the models are more varied than VP. This mindset must still exist because US Vogue continues to often has bland and/or bad covers with bland, boring actresses. In every US Vogue thread with an actress cover, there are many who can't grasp that model covers don't sell.

If this was 2005 the argument would have standing - look at the difference between a 2005 and 2010/2011 issue. It's incredible. Excellent job, Wintour and staff, also please put Eniko in your magazine.

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12-02-2011
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US Vogue has had the freshest content and most diverse mix of celebs and models of all the Vogues lately. Now I can never guess who's going to be on the cover when in the past you could tell by who had a movie out that month. The editorials feature such a diverse range of models of varying races not to mention star models alongside many newcomers.

It's popular to hate US Vogue but I'm increasingly finding the criticism to be unwarranted.

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13-02-2011
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Apart from Vogue Italia, China and maybe Nippon, the American edition is the best one as of the moment. Remember that magazines have to sell and US Vogue still rely on the readership of their conservative housewife sector I suppose (although that doesn't excuse the photoshop messes we sometimes see) which is why Gwyneth and Jennifer Aniston are regular features.

However we should not judge something based solely on its cover alone. After a stale period a couple of years ago Anna seems to have opened her grip on the controlled, waspy aesthetic that used to rule the magazine; the stylists and photographers are able to convey their ideas much more clearly and some of Meisel's, Klein's and Sims' best work now comes out in US Vogue. What I particularly love is that Anna has non-Caucasian models in nearly every issue now and is not letting the staid runway castings dictate who appears in the publication (Michelle Lee and Interview is possibly the one other casting director doing a decent job but still not touching what Anna and co does)...who else is promoting amazing girls like Mia Aminata Niara and Bonnie Chen ATM? No one.

VP has become so repetitive; it's overly austere and predictably sexual, a magazine where a black girl comes appears fleetingly every six months or so (not to mention Asian models). Since stylists like Sauve and Templer have left the magazine has truly revealed just how limited it is in being able to fulfil a simple task like indulging the reader in exciting, different types of vouyerism that they expect from a publication of its calibre.

If Anna would let other photographers aside from Testino shoot the cover, tone it down with the text overload and lay off the socialite features than the mag would literally be perfect. I think that this cynicism will always exist because people need something to bitch and moan about and because the American viewpoint will always be less liberal than the European one, something that some of the US members in particular seem to not be able to accept.


Last edited by Fiercification; 13-02-2011 at 07:09 PM.
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16-02-2011
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I agree that US Vogue has come a long way in the past year. The content has improved significantly, and I really like where it seems to be heading...regardless of the fact that I have wanted to replace Anna for years, it seems she is finally starting to shake things up a bit so I can't complain.

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28-02-2011
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I think the problem is symptomatic of the competitive nature of fashion publishing jobs. If one gets to an influential position (whether as editor, stylist, photographer or designer) there is a natural temptation to want to maintain that position. In publishing this often translates into adopting a "safe" approach which can result in lacklustre publications.

Just my opinion.

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28-02-2011
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Addmittedly I don't read other versions of Vogue often, but I agree that US Vogue is rather boring . . . although I'm not the target audience. The only cover I even liked in the last year was the Marion C. one. Just looking at the Natalie Portman or Halle covers made me snooze . . . so much beige and shades of pink and red. I really wish they would put models on the cover just once a year or something. I always find the spreads with professional models to be so much less bland than those with celebrities.

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28-02-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Modelo View Post
Why then was Carine Roitfeld fired for one bad issue
Which issue is that? I know she left, etc just didn't realize it was over one single bad issue.

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01-03-2011
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^ It was the one with the editorial Cadeaux, which displayed children with full make up, jewellery and couture clothes. Apparently advertisers were not very happy.
"LVMH Chairman and CEO Bernard Arnault allegedly threatened Conde Nast International Chairman Jonathan Newhouse with the removal of all LVMH ads from the next issue of Vogue Paris"
source: racked

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14-03-2011
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No, I don't think Vogue US is passe. On the contrary, it fulfills it's purpose quite well, IMHO. I think that each edition of the mag serves different audiences and that the US version deliberately seeks a more general audience than many other editions/mags. In some ways, US Vogue is "People Magazine" but w/ more clothes.....it taps into that same audience and has similar success. Obviously Anna has a real understanding of her intended mass audience and what they respond to.

Vogue Paris was and always has been a mag that sought a narrower audience than the US edition in part because there are far more fashion magazines on the French newsstands. Add to that, many of them are weekly or bi-weekly....however the US really has nothing to equivalent to this in fashion coverage, so Vogue's impact is far more potent here, IMHO. Many American readers seem to seek a "how-to" approach to fashion/makeup/accessories/etc.. that's largely absent in foreign editions of mags, be they Vogues/Elles or indies like 10 and AnOther.

Personally I find US Vogue far too tepid for my tastes...not only in it's celeb/socialite focus, but also in the labels, photogs, and models it uses. I don't mind celebs/socialites IF I know they are interested in fashion themselves as opposed to merely selling a project and/or themselves the product of a personal stylist. Carine's VP, by contrast, was more daring in subject matter but also far more limited in scope than US Vogue. She seemed far too interested in a very small group of designers, models, photogs, etc. I found her mag too intensely "insider-y" for a mainstream fash rag. She neglected far too much of the general Paris scene for my tastes. When you're a major glossy, you leave that beat to "Purple". IOW, both Vogue and VP have their pluses and minuses, but they are playing to different audiences and seek different results.

While Anna's Vogue in many ways functions as both a high end catalog and a guide for people seeking advice on what's in and how to wear it, VP and VI mostly focus on presenting the clothes in fascinating ways. They expect the reader to figure it out themselves! I figure that these approaches are very rooted in the specific cultures of the intended audiences. For me, it's clear that Anna's approach works for the general mass US audience she seeks via her celeb covers. It may not work for the hardcore fashion wonks out there, but how many people are obsessed w/ fashion like this? Being on sites like this and others makes it seem like there are far more than actually exist methinks.

As for Carine getting canned over the Ford issue, I seriously doubt that was the sole reason. It may have been a bit more rope for the noose, but how many mainstream glossy editors would let both Tom Ford and Terry Richardson run loose on their mag like she did? She was asking for trouble there, but I think it was a culmination of issues over a long period of time that lead her to the axe. Frankly Anna's far less naive than Carine seems to be...that's why she's lasted so long and gathered so much power where others have fallen by the wayside one by one.

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