If you’re anything like me, your social feeds and most frequented media have been awash in Fashion Week coverage for the past few weeks.
Nothing new there, and there’s been plenty of interesting things to keep up with. Anthony Vacarello’s first Saint Laurent collection, Bouchra Jarrar’s wonderful first collection at Lanvin, Alessandro Michele’s endless bobo victory lap at Gucci, Shayne Oliver’s return to (gender-ambiguous fluid polymorphous) form at HBA.
But, I have to admit, nothing piqued my interest/got my back up like Vogue.com’s ostensible Milan FW round-up, ‘Ciao, Milano! Vogue.com’s Editors Discuss the Week That Was’.
In the midst of some legitimately articulate discussions of the new Gucci, Consuelo Castiglioni’s putative final collection at Marni, and all manner’s of things Dolce & Gabbana that I couldn’t care less about (I prefer my denim unbejewelled, thank you very much) there was some honest-to-God ruthless snarkiness directed at style bloggers.
A lot, actually.
Sally Singer suggested that bloggers find another business, as they’re ‘heralding the death of style’.
Sarah Mower bemoaned the ‘pathetic’ girls who troll the queues outside shows, desperately hoping to be snapped, before making a very clear delineation between ‘them’ (bloggers) and ‘the pros’.
Nicole Phelps called ‘them’ sad, before taking potshots at brands who participate in the storm, and suggesting that Versace and Bottega Veneta were the two most interesting shows of the week, not coincidental to the fact that they ‘don’t play the game’.
Alessandra Codinha, Vogue.com’s Fashion News Editor, was far less circumspect. To wit:
“There’s not much I can add here beyond how funny it is that we even still call them “bloggers,” as so few of them even do that anymore. Rather than a celebration of any actual style, it seems to be all about turning up, looking ridiculous, posing, twitching in your seat as you check your social media feeds, fleeing, changing, repeating . . . It’s all pretty embarrassing—even more so when you consider what else is going on in the world. (Have you registered to vote yet? Don’t forget the debate on Monday!)”
And then suggested that ‘Looking for style among a bought-and-paid-for (“blogged out?”) front row is like going to a strip club looking for romance’.
Like, seriously sweetie? It’s not like you’re at the Brookings Institution. You’re an online Fashion ‘News’ Editor. One of your site’s current featured articles is entitled ‘Breathless: Why Friends With Benefits Are The Most Sustainable Relationships’, with goes great with that penetrating coverage on the last time Mac Miller cried. Let me guess, it was the last time he listened to his own record?
You sure you want to name check the election?
To be fair, I’m not sure I haven’t said several of these things myself, and I’ve definitely had or heard this conversation waaaay too many times to count. But Vogue.com taking up the mantle in this particular argument is like Mr. T mocking people for pitying fools; like Madonna lamenting someone’s conical bra.
Don’t invent the fucking game if you don’t want anyone else to play.
Because Vogue has been doing this since the day before forever. Ever heard of the Vogue accessories closet? Yeah you have, we’ve all watched Sex & The City. Think Condé Nast pays for that stuff?
They regularly co-host events with brands ranging from bottled water to champagne to the very brands they write about, and there’s a definite correlation between ad pages and (fawning) coverage.
I know a woman who was an editor at some unnamed NYC-based fashion magazine (that I’ve been talking about for 300 straight words) who decided to leave fashion and start a new business. She funded it entirely by selling ‘gifts’ that had been furnished by fashion brands. Some of them for the price of a Prius. No jokes.
So take it down a notch.
Not only did Vogue start this game, but they took us by the hand and led us to its demise. Ms Anna herself heralded the era of celebrity covers, displacing actual models. Every time I see some actress flogging some perfume it taints Ms Wintour’s legacy just a little bit, in my mind. Diana Vreeland would have never put up with that shit. Let alone actively promulgate it.
It’s called lifestyle marketing. Sell me on a lifestyle, not someone’s actual life. Because, I refuse to believe that people are so delusional that they think that smelling like J.Lo will turn you into J.Lo. And why would I care what kind of pen Hugh Jackman uses? Unless, perhaps, he uses it to perform an amateur self-tracheotomy before the next musical. On the other hand, beautiful people lazing about in a Dedon poolside? Sign me up. Happiness is just a credit limit raise and a flight to Pantelleria away.
The incredible crassness of Vogue bemoaning the xFW circus is just one more step in a long series of backward movements for them. The site is more celebrity gossip than legit fashion discussion now anyways. They have paid links to other content at the bottom of their homepage, à la mommy bloggers everywhere. And their desperation to be considered au courant and digital-forward is palpable.
This all rings a little too much ‘pot calling the Birkin black’.
I’d love to see Vogue morph back into a legitimate or reliable mode of dissertation on the world of fashion, rather than the Jenner sisters news aggregator it currently is. I feel like they could afford Cathy Horyn.
It’s been a solid decade since the ‘Bible’ has been rendered useless by its own French (circa Carine Roitfeld, at any rate) and Japanese editions, to say nothing of Purple, FuckingYoung, and BOF.
Yeah, the Devil may wear Prada, but let’s not pretend she paid retail…