Tuesday, July 08, 2008
The fashion world has been buzzing about this issue for months. The photos are incredible, there are some interesting articles on travel, film, Spike Lee, Michelle Obama and a tribute to Yves Saint Laurent etc. It will take me a while to read said articles as they are in Italian and I get frustrated after the first few paragraphs (I cannot wait until I can just speak/read/write fluently).
I read an article in a British newspaper that said one reason designers are not using black models is because the country with the biggest growth in luxury goods is China. And black models “don’t sell” there.
So let me get this straight, a woman in communist China will decide not to spend the equivalent of $1800 on a Louis Vutton bag because Naomi Campbell is in the ad?
American Vogue also had an article about this issue. One person said the last decade was just bad for models period so it was worse for black models. Celebs are on the covers more (especially in the U.S). Plus designers are looking for “hangers,” 14 yearo-olds from Eastern Europe who do not “distract” from the clothes. Many feel this is actually bad for fashion. It’s booooring. Everyone looks the same. Where are the Asian or Indian models? Remember the early 90s, the 80s? Now poof all the models of color are gone as the world become smaller? Makes no sense.
I think things are changing. Linda Evangelista has been working non-stop so is Naomi “I have a bad temper” Campbell. Back in the 80s the average model was a 6 maybe even OH MY GOD an 8. Now they are 0 or 00. Linda, Naomi and Christy Turlington are grown women are def. bigger than a 2 or a 0. Glad to see they are back,
One fashion blogger asked if American Vogue would ever do an issue like this. No. Italian and French Vogue are way more fashion forward. Their readership is more specific. They can take more risks. Anna Wintour is working in a country that is a lot more conservative.
Regarding the photos themselves. Steven Meisel is one of my favorite photographers. The photos are gorgeous. There are a bunch of back in the day models like Veronica Webb, Pat Cleveland, Karen Alexander, Iman etc. along with the up and coming.
Ms. Campbell has a spread with the title “There’s Only One Naomi”. I know she has issues (my sister used to go to the same NYC based hairdresser) but she has been holding it down for 20 years. I mean even when she had to serve time (after being charged with assault) by working in sanitation, did she not look amazing on her way the station? Naomi, clearly those anger management classes you went to are not working, please get some help. Fashion needs you. ☺
I am not a big Tyra fan but here she’s striking. She doesn’t do a lot of high fashion, she is more commercial (Victoria Secrets, Sports Illustrated) but the way she is shot made me see her differently. Keep an eye out for Arlenis from the Dominican Republic. Stunning. She was discovered walking to classes in the D.R.
Will this issue change anything? Probably not but it does serve as a wake up call. Fashion is a multi-billion global business; therefore the models should reflect women from all over the globe. I hope there will be no need for “a very special issue” in the future because we will be seeing all types of models.
I liked what Franca Sozzani, the editor of Italian Vogue, said when a reporter asked given the recent elections here and the Lega Nord results, was she worried about the reception to this issue? She said she didn’t care. That was their problem not hers. Amen.
Here is the New York Times article about the issue.