Anna Wintour, my absolute personal favorite fashion icon, had some pretty interesting things to say about where the future of fashion is going, in a recent CNN interview. Along with sharing her insightful thoughts on young emerging designers and what it takes for Vogue to stay relevant, Wintour talked about how easy it is in this day and age to be famous through social media outlets and technology. She highlighted the difference between being a successful designer and being a famous one! And of course she spoke of the world renowned fashion publication, Vogue. It just wouldn’t be right if she didn’t bring this riveting publication up along with what it has taken to sustain the powerhouse through relevance.
Not so surprisingly, the conversation from parent to child or friend to friend of what to wear or what not to wear begins early on in life. Creative expression begins in our infant years and grows even more compelling as we discover and explore more about ourselves and further develop our authenticity. This, consequently, shapes not only the choices we make in fashion, but all of the choices we make in life.
Creative expression can start as early as a parent allows a child to make choices. However many argue that creative expression through fashion begins the moment you decide what is cool for you verses what is accepted as cool. Whether through the micro lens of fashion or through the macro lens of life, the flickering flame of the freedom of expression exists within us all early on. It’s simply in our DNA.
Despite our natural instinct to be ourselves, the future of fashion is dictated by global influencers, trends and of course the person who is known to reign as the Queen of the fashion industry, Anna Wintour. Her influence and respect is so intertwined within the fashion community, almost every creative or fashionista in the universe knows Anna Wintour as a household name.
For those of you who are not as versed in “her highness,” here is the synopsis: Anna Wintour born in 1949, left school very early on and had a bit of a party life before becoming an editor at various publications across Europe. While Wintour comes from a very wealthy family, she had a do-it-yourself attitude and proved to be very ambitious. She landed at British Vogue in 1986 and later moved around a bit, making over each publication she touched within the Condé Naste publishing house profile.
As she successfully completed each project given to her, she was promoted and challenged and in 1988, American Vogue was losing subscribers to Elle Magazine. And guess who was the edgy answer and remedy to the subscriber plague, Miss Anna Wintour. Quickly promoted to Editor-in-Chief of Vogue, Wintour moved back to New York where she still resides and remains on her throne at present.
Wintour told the London Daily Telegraph, “…I’m not interested in the super-rich or indefinitely leisured. I want readers to be energetic, executive women, with money of their own and a wide range of interests.”
Throughout her impressive career, Wintour has been known for sending photographers to remote out-door locations for shoots across the globe. Her eye for innovative creation, breaking new designers, mixing high and low end fashion, her ever so critical tongue, success, and of course the Queen’s ego are some of her royally British bragging rights.
Never one to rest on the success of previous accomplishments, Wintour continues to push the boundaries of creativity and fashion innovation. For those who are unaware, Wintour was responsible for the Kanye and Kim West cover that shocked America. She made it clear that it was actually all the noise that Mr. West was making within the world of fashion that landed them on the cover, as opposed to rumors that credited Kim for the illustrious Vogue cover. Yet in still, the spread sparked controversy and positioned Vogue to appeal to a more diverse consumer. Wintour stated, “there isn’t a such thing as too far in this day and age.” Wintour also added that social media is a part of how we live at this present time and it definitely plays a roll in how things become relevant. She believes that fashion and Vogue have to reflect a moment, the way fashion as a whole reflects culture. This eye-opening interview allowed me to see fashion for what it is and that it’s driven by the people.
Wintour emphasized the importance of her team having their own points of view and possessing the ability to challenge her to think differently about the world around her. Wintour went on to mention and salute beloved friends of hers such as world renown designer, Dianne Von Furstenberg, who also sees the importance of the give back and regularly participates, like Wintour, in paying it forward. When asked about how she felt about the “Devil Wears Prada”, she said “it brought a positive light to fashion and allowed people that had been working so hard behind the scenes an opportunity to shine.” She made it clear her number one priority is to help the fashion industry as well as fashion enthusiasm in any way she can.
– TB & Val
Interview Credits: Kristie Lu Stout