In Honor Of Vogue’s 120th Anniversary
The Stylish Faces And Talents Of The Moment
Simons, far right, with actress Diane Kruger in Dior Haute Couture, at the Avenue d’Iéna setting of his debut for the house.
Article first published as The Vogue 120… Special Anniversary Feature on Technorati.
To celebrate their 120th anniversary Vogue not only tapped Lady Gaga to cover such a special issue, but released an incredibly beautiful story properly called The Vogue 120. The issues covers stylish singers, designers, actors and models – all under 45 -photographed by Norman Jean Roy, to become part of the most alluring fairytale we could possibly dream of… an extremely Vogue fairytale.
Inside, the most influential fashion-crowd get together for a stylishly-magical gathering. Big names like Raf Simons – who had a tremendous year – are joining forces with the likes of the 65th Cannes Film Festival darling, the always stylish Diane Kruger, for such enchanting encounter. The Belgian Simons, who departed Jil Sander in February after being dramatically ousted in favor of Sander herself, returning to her namesake label, was later signed to replace John Galliano as creative director of Christian Dior. On July 2, mere weeks after that, he made his debut, showing an haute couture collection, in a Parisian hôtel particulier festooned with a million flowers, that paid due respect to Monsieur Dior.
Deeper in the forest, we can find the Fab-brits… Sarah Burton, Christopher Bailey, and Stella McCartney, who beyond their English sense of style, history, and humor, are genius for turning fashion labels into global brands. Burton, taking over Alexander McQueen in 2010, proved herself the most discreet designer in the world with her wedding dress—and subsequent dresses—for the Duchess of Cambridge, while gently reorienting the brand in a beautifully feminine direction. Bailey, chief creative officer of Burberry, has built a multiplatform, multibillion-dollar organism on the power of trench coats. McCartney, meanwhile, goes from strength to strength as a spokeswoman for working mothers, the designer of the British Olympic team’s Adidas uniforms, and the instigator of such wheezes as the supermodel flash mob that set Shalom Harlow and Amber Valletta dancing on tables in red-hot evening dresses last London Fashion Week.
No fashion list would be complete without the great Phoebe Philo- She had the cool and the composure to offer fashion a semblance of sanity after the financial crash of 2009. That moment, when took control of the Céline runway with a proposal for clean, rational daywear, she set a new agenda: daywear rather than cocktail dresses; tailoring, big shirts, sweaters, pants, coats. Her system, unflagging and classily consistent, attracts adoring loyalty from all who know how difficult it is to dress with a chic froideur in daily life. It’s only added to her heroine status that she keeps out of the limelight, insisting on taking maternity breaks. She was photographed in June, shortly after the birth of her third child, Arthur.
From designers we go to Hollywood starlets… “I have a quickie relationship with fashion,” says actress Jennifer Lawrence, laughing. “I wear a dress for one night on the red carpet, and that’s it.” Fashion, though, can only imagine a long-term future with the star of the cultish The Hunger Games, which catapulted the girl from Louisville into the realms of superstardom because of her turn as the creatively attired Katniss Everdeen. (Think Gaga . . . gone wild.) If designers are fixating on Lawrence, it’s in no small part due to her sunny gorgeousness and her cool casualness toward getting dressed. Her life in L.A. is equally low-key. “I pity the paparazzi,” she says. “There are only so many pictures they can take of me on the boardwalk in Santa Monica.”
America is not only about Hollywood. Take a quick look at the designers driving American fashion – Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough of Proenza Schouler, Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte, and David Neville and Marcus Wainwright of Rag & Bone – some of the greatest fashion-minds of the moment that have made it very clear two heads are better than one. “Divide and conquer,” says Neville. “That’s our motto.” Yet working in pairs isn’t the only thing that unites these highly individualized teams. They’re also blazing radical new trails toward redefining cool, whether it’s Proenza’s urgent, innovative polish, Rodarte’s imaginative romanticism, or Rag & Bone’s sporty-street mix….
From far left, model Karen Elson in Alexander McQueen, Burton of Alexander McQueen, Bailey of Burberry, model Stella Tennant in Burberry Prorsum, McCartney, and model/designer Claudia Schiffer, both in Stella McCartney
Ladylike would be the obvious way to describe what Copping, of Nina Ricci, and Moralioglu, of Erdem, can do. But put it that way and you miss the subtleties of their clothes. Their designs, seen here on actresses Emilia Clarke (left, in Nina Ricci) and Ruth Wilson (in Erdem), exemplify modern femininity—a coolly nuanced appropriation of such tropes as lace, flowers, and lingerie that always keeps women at the very center of the frame.
Rooney Mara And Ricardo Tisci: She was The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, who has since turned heads on the red carpet. He is The Boy with the Heart of Romantic Darkness, who has dramatically transformed Givenchy. One may act, the other design, but each never fails to remind us of why less obvious forms of beauty, not to mention the gritty and heady thrill of urban life, matter so very much
Philo, with model Marie Piovesan in Céline
Left to right, Vanessa Traina, Jenna Courtin-Clarins, Prisca Courtin-Clarins, Virginie Courtin-Clarins, Claire Courtin-Clarins, Lauren Santo Domingo, Shala Monroque, Alexia Niedzielski, Lily Kwong, and Elizabeth von Guttman: These ladies ay look good sitting next to the runway, but they’re not just sitting pretty. Enter the new breed of social slasher: Editors, entrepreneurs, artists, eco-warriors, models, advocates for social change, these women do it all and do it with style, inspiring the designers with their original approach to fashion, from the immaculate to the irreverent.
The actress in a Diesel Black Gold jacket. Michael Kors swimsuit.
From far left: Hernandez and McCollough of Proenza Schouler, Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte, and Neville and Wainwright of Rag & Bone.
What girl wouldn’t like a Dundas - with model Caroline Trentini, in Emilio Pucci – on her chaise longue? In a dull, double-dip world, he’s the man who has fought on the side of good-time dressing, turning Emilio Pucci into a hotbed of sophisticated sexiness. Trained in Parisian haute couture and sprung from Norway via America, he’s a cosmopolitan gentleman with a studio in the Florentine Palazzo Pucci and a very healthy twenty-first-century work ethic. Endless numbers of the supergorgeous are his friends
Left to right, Rousteing of Balmain, Altuzarra, and Vaccarello with models Chanel Iman, Kate Upton, and Candice Swanepoel: None of these young designers shies away from worshipping the curves of a woman’s body, yet they’re not remotely interested in the clichés of “sexy.” If the clothes are hot, it’s simply because the heat flares up with the way they sculpt and shape and sinuously manipulate their silhouettes. It’s as much about empowerment as it is eroticization
Who remembers that Nicolas Ghesquière began as a backroom boy at Balenciaga when the company name meant virtually nothing? The career trajectory of the most innovative French designer of his generation has long since placed the house at the apex of Parisian influence; his blend of high-tech, sci-fi thinking and haute couture technique is inimitable (though many, many try). He’s here with Kristen Stewart, who wears Balenciaga constantly and is the face of its new fragrance, Florabotanica.
From left: Models Karlie Kloss (in Marchesa), Liu Wen, Arizona Muse, and Joan Smalls, all wearing Vera Wang Bride dresses. “We’re kind of a motley crew,” says Karlie Kloss, the first (and most certainly the last) person to refer to these superstar supermodels in such ragtag terms. But in a way, the model with legs long enough to stretch across the time-and-space continuum is right. Not because these women could appear anything other than glorious but because they each evoke a different idea of beauty, be it commanding (Kloss), lyrical (Wen), serene (Muse), or strong (Smalls). If there’s one thing they have in common, says Smalls, it’s this: “We’re a new generation that’s not only about looks. We’re very hardworking and see what we do as a business.”
Appearing in ethereal swaths of Gucci silk and Valentino lace because “they feel like they’re doing a performance of their own,” she enthralls devotees with her theatrical wardrobe as well as her soulful voice. The Pre-Raphaelite beauty credits “growing up around art history” (her mother is a Renaissance-studies professor) for her sense of artful drama, while Welch’s blend of British eccentricity—a mash-up of every era from the eighteenth century through the 1970s—flaunts a romantic unconventionality. “I like to imagine I’ll wear the things I’m buying now when I’m old and mad!” she says. The musician in a Chanel dress, Dolce & Gabbana cape and boots