Reactions from within the company to Anna Wintour's new promotion — in addition to editing Vogue and serving as editorial director for Teen Vogue, she will now be the creative director of Condé Nast — have been...mixed. Wintour will now technically outrank her fellow magazine editors within the company, and her new job will require her to work with those editors to steward their publications' "brands." Even as many of those publications coexist as quasi-competitors. Women's Wear Daily has the dirt:
"We have a lot of autonomy as editors," one source said. "No one wants to see that go away. People need a little more clarity."
"We're not all friends here," said another insider. "This is a competitive building. We use the same photographers. We compete for the same celebrities. This will be a gradual process as she finds areas she'd like to investigate. Why else would she take the job if she wasn't going to do things with it?"
We are not all friends here. Apparently, Wintour has been feeling restless. She's been in her current position at Vogue for almost 25 years. She allegedly lobbied hard for an ambassadorship, but was passed over. Condé Nast, meanwhile, didn't want her to leave the fold, so the company created this new role for her. [WWD]
Teen Vogue's Amy Astley, a Wintour protégée, says this: "She's been a real mentor, and I think other editors will find that she can help them, too." [WWD]
Burberry is under fire after questions have been raised about the sourcing of the peacock feathers used in its peacock feather coat, which retails for $33,000. Wintour is seen here wearing the coat in the company of Burberry creative director Christopher Bailey. The company initially claimed its coat was made from "100 per cent farmed golden peacock feathers [from] India." But India prohibits the export of peacock feathers. Any Indian peacock feathers are from the black market.
Burberry has since changed its story on the peacock trench coat, saying that a Chinese farm sold the feathers to a New York dealer, who then exported them to India where the feathers were sewn into fabric. The last stop before reaching the fashion catwalks of London was Italy where a company called Zamasport finished the trench coat.
Animal rights advocates point out that in China peacocks are prized for their feathers and meat. Bird farms in China typically keep the animals packed tightly in bamboo cages before ripping the feathers from their bodies while they are alive. Birds are often live-plucked two or three times before they are butchered for their meat.
The Chinese Feather and Down Industrial Association says that only 3% of peacock feathers come from birds that were plucked live. [Inquisitr]
André Leon Talley gave an interview about his new book, a history of the little black dress (with essays by Robin Givhan and Maureen Dowd). But this quote about his grandmother stuck out:
"My grandmother was a very wonderful lady — she was a maid, but she had extreme elegance and she had Spartan elegance. We did not have a lot of money, we did not have a lot of wardrobe or clothes, so what we had was the best. We did not have a lot, but the luxury that she taught me was the luxury of family, the luxury of good food, and the luxury of beautiful, beautiful white sheets. I mean, my grandmother had the most impeccable white sheets. Egyptian cotton that she also washed and ironed herself. And that was where I learned luxury."
- Patrick Robinson, the former creative director of Gap and Perry Ellis, who earned six- or seven-figure salaries in those positions and who is married to powerful and well-connected Vogue editor Virginia Smith, is panhandling for loose change on Kickstarter to found a new fashion line. (Who does he think he is, Whitney Port?) [NYTimes]
- "I am this weird androgynous tomboy where I'm strangely low maintenance and have a five-minute makeup regimen." Whatever you say, Rachel Zoe. [WWD]
- Karlie Kloss officially became a Victoria's Secret Angel. [Telegraph]
- Bulgari says it will fight the allegations that it perpetrated a $4 billion tax fraud in Italy. $60 million in company assets were seized by government authorities yesterday. [WWD]
- The fall 2013 season, as predicted, was incredibly fur-heavy. A majority of designers in each of the four major cities showed fur. London was the least furry city, with 61% of shows including fur. Milan was the most furry, with 86%. At the Fendi show, all 41 looks included fur. [Fashionista]
- Nicholas Kirkwood is apparently in talks with several of the biggest names in the luxury business — including LVMH — about backing his business. [WWD]
- Allison Williams continues to be as delightfully, neurotically Type A as her character on Girls. "I'm getting ready for the Met Ball. The theme is punk, so I've been doing a lot of research." Because nothing says "punk" like "research"! [T]
- Net-A-Porter is going to start selling beauty products. The brands they'll be stocking at the launch on March 20 will include Aesop, Chantecaille, and Le Métier de Beauté. [WWD]
- H&M doesn't believe the U.S. market is even close to reaching saturation. The chain opened 40 stores in the U.S. last year and plans to open at least that many again this year. It currently has 269 stores here, compared to Forever 21's 500+ and Express's 600+. H&M is also planning on introducing its Cos brand here. [WWD]
- And now, a moment with photographer William Klein. William, you did a lot of fashion work, but as you yourself say, "Fashion photography I couldn't care less. I did it for money." So, what about street photography?
"I would see things in New York that gave me the impression that this meant something and I would document it. I would photograph the stand in front of a candy store where you would see the newspapers lined up. The [New York] Daily News would have the headline, "Gun Man Caught in Love Nest" or whatever. You would see "Gun," "Gun," "Gun," one next to each other. On the top of the newsstand there would be a little plate where somebody could take a newspaper and put their four cents on the little plate. It was a traditional object that said a lot about life in New York at that period. The candy store owner trusted people to pay for the newspaper and, secondly, it worked."