11 September 2016

Vogue US Is Over, Or Is It?

Originally posted on the 28th August 2016 here.

The September issue is the most important magazine of the year in the industry of fashion, being dubbed the fashion bible and the must-have issue for every devoted, loyal and self-proclaimed fashion follower. Anna Wintour has been doing a relatively good job since she came into power back in 1900000 and hasn’t stopped since, very much an immortal and one of the most influential individuals in the industry. But lately some seem to think that Wintour has been lacking in her abrasive and usually straightforward decisions leading up to the very important month in fashion.

By choosing Kendall Jenner, infamous for being apart of the chaotic Kardashians-Jenner clan and pulling a nerve at many people for simply being Kendall, to be the star of the front cover and the entire magazine. This issue simply features nothing more than Jenner, and it seems that not everyone is happy with the decision.

Kendall Jenner (Vogue US vs Iman Hammam (Vogue Netherlands))
Backlash comes with the ‘death’ of Vogue US as loyal fans commented on how the legacy of the publication has gone downhill since Wintour began associating with the Kardashians, and that the target market of the magazine has be downgraded to young teens. Other critics come from both inside and outside of the industry as Jenner, hailed the ‘breakout model of her generation’. It seems that history repeats itself with some calling Jenner a tasteless option when there could have been so many other more deserving models to take the front cover. Entertainment Tonight Rebecca Romijn had called out Jenner and other models who been pulled from the ashes due to their family name and fortune, outlining the idea that the popularity of a model on social media defines her as a ‘supermodel’. This debate of whether or not Jenner had the right to be on the cover comes as many still resonate with the golden days of Vogue, where only the most beloved and in-demand super models of that era could land a cover. Just think of Linda Evangelista or Twiggy, or even Naomi Campbell when thinking of the term supermodel.

But now, it seems as if all the hard work that so many models put in towards their career are being shunned out for celebrities and anyone with a fortune to their name. Celebrity endorsement in both publication, runway and even in campaigns have become a fixation for the industry where there is more of a recognition value [of the celebrity] for the consumer. No longer are models able to make a name for themselves because they’re pushed aside with small jobs while celebrity-models like Jenner eat up all the big jobs.

But it shouldn’t be a big surprise to anyone, even back in 1999, supermodel Heidi Klum had speculated on the celebrity-trend that consumers related more to someone that they could relate too and see often – this means that celebrities on covers are more profitable for publications due to this alignment that consumers have with them.

But in saying that, what is the value of fashion and the industry, especially for Vogue as one of the biggest publishers and trendsetters of the industry when it’s become no more than another selling point for profitability and less about fashion?