>> Shakeups Up Top at Vogue, Elle —Danko Steiner, who has Vogue's design director for four years, announced last week he is leaving the magazine to pursue photography. Raul Martinez, founder of AR New York, has been chosen by Anna Wintour as creative consultant, stepping in to work with Vogue starting Dec. 1 (his work will appear in pages starting next Spring). And over a year and a half after Nina Garcia left Elle, Alexis Bryan Morgan has been named her successor as the magazine's fashion director starting January 2010. Morgan was most recently executive fashion director at Vanity Fair, and is the daughter of Anna Wintour's boyfriend, Shelby Morgan. [WWD, FWD]
Hillary Clinton finally sat down for a long-overdue Vogue interview. She offended editor Anna Wintour during the primaries by turning down the fashion mag out fear of looking "too feminine." And though she won't be on the December cover, the article is as substantial and satisfying as a cover story.
From night swimming alone to her favorite shows (Mad Men!), we see a side of Madame Secretary that all the vetting in the world would not unearth. See some of what she had to say below.
On visiting countries as a high-ranking female: "You can go to some countries and there's not a woman in the room. They don't even make the effort to give me the token woman minister. . . . And in lots of African countries the honorific for women is 'Mama.' So I had lots of people say to me, 'Mama, what about this; Mama, what about that?'"
On President Obama's job offer: "I was stunned after the election when President Obama asked me to consider this. . . . I really was very unconvinced. I did not think it was the right thing to do. I didn't want to do it. I just really had a lot of doubts, and I kept suggesting other people: Well, how about this person! How about that person! This one would be really good! But then a friend of mine called me and basically said, 'How would you have felt if you'd been elected and you'd called him and asked him to do this?' And that really made a big impression on me. How do you say no? And so . . . I said yes. And here I am."
On Mad Men: "That's how it was! That's why the women's-liberation movement was so shocking. It was like news from outer space"
See what else she had to say after the jump.
The CFDA and Vogue magazine held the sixth CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund awards ceremony last night at Skylight Studios, where Sophie Theallet beat out Alabama Chanin’s Natalie Chanin, Esquivel Shoes’ George Esquivel, Gary Graham, House of Waris’ Waris Ahluwalia, Monique Pean, Ohne Titel’s Flora Gill and Alexa Adams, Patrik Ervell, Spurr’s Simon Spurr and Wayne’s Wayne Lee. Theallet took home the grand prize—$200,000 and a year of mentorship by an industry veteran. Runners-up, Monique Pean and Patrik Ervell will each receive $50,000 and a business mentor.
Cathy Horyn for one feels Theallet deserved the honor, writing this morning, "Her clothes are not flashy or arty; she’s not everybody’s darling. But if you appreciate hand-done details like pin-tucking, if you like a certain friendliness in clothes, and if you’re surprised and delighted by non-generic reds and blues, then you are surely on Sophie’s side."
Albertus Swanepoel, Irene Neuwirth, Philip Crangi, Michael and Nicole Colovos, Alexander Wang, Phillip Lim, Peter Som, Lisa Mayock, Sophie Buhai, and Thakoon Panichgul were among the former fashion fund-ers who came out for the big night; joining Nicole Kidman, Francisco Costa, Anna Wintour, Diane von Furstenberg, and keynote speaker Alber Elbaz.
>> Wintour Hires Obama Online Campaign Masterminds for Vogue.com —Last week, it came out that Elle pulled ahead of Vogue this year in terms of ad pages — 2,100 to 1,990, respectively — which Vogue SVP and publishing director Tom Florio chalked up to his reluctance to "heavily discount and use our editors to sell ad pages. What we saw happen this year, which we haven’t seen in a while, is the discounts were approaching 70 percent. Some of the deals that were being done were just crazy." This week, meanwhile, Anna Wintour is continuing to beef up Vogue's web presence — a spokesman confirmed that Blue State Digital, which masterminded Barack Obama's online campaign, has been hired to work on Vogue.com business and editorial sides, focusing on reader and subscriber outreach. [WWD, Jezebel]
I will never tire of Daria Werbowy's amazingness. For Vogue Nippon's November issue, the Ukrainian-Canadian model strutted her stuff in an editorial dubbed "Girl of the Golden Field." Now this is how Fall dressing should be: cozy sweaters, sherpa-lined leather jackets, ponchos, boots, and fur coats. Daria continues to astonish me with her scintillating bod — boobage alert! — and piercing blue eyes. Of course, her hair is tousled to perfection – Bella, how can I get this look? Furthermore, the prairie backdrop is beyond beautiful. Keep clicking for more Daria action . . .
>> Anna Wintour, Tom Florio Get New Gigs —Changes are happening all around for Anna Wintour — her fundraising efforts and continual Obama administration support have earned her one of the 25 spots on the new President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities. The committee, which also includes Sarah Jessica Parker, Forrest Whitaker, Teresa Heinz Kerry, Yo-Yo Ma, and Bryan Lourd, co-chairman of Creative Artists Agency, will advise the President on how to expand the role of arts in society. She's also getting a new colleague: Vogue and Teen Vogue publisher Tom Florio is becoming SVP and publishing director at Conde Nast, adding Bon Appetit and Conde Nast Traveler to his portfolio, while Susan Plagemann, VP and Marie Claire publisher, will report to him as the new VP and publisher of Vogue starting Jan. 4. [WWD, WWD]
Anna Wintour (along with Mayor Bloomberg and the CFDA) officially announced the return of Fashion's Night Out yesterday with Wintour saying she was "absolutely bowled over by the response" to her 2009 open-to-all street party/fashion event.
The focus for 2010 will be to attract new participants (there were over 800 stores open late during the 2009 event) and to expand the festivities beyond the U.S. and into other international cities where Vogue is published—specifically London, Milan, Berlin, Athens, Madrid, Moscow, Taipei, Tokyo, Sao Paulo, New Delhi, and Beijing.
Pulling off such a major city-wide initiative is the main reason Wintour was recently named one of the 12 most powerful people in New York by New York magazine, and we're pretty sure she'll prove Fashion's Night Out can be bigger and better in 2010.
>> Annie Leibovitz Talks Finances —Annie Leibovitz was on scene at the Women's Conference in Long Beach yesterday, chatting with Katie Couric about her financial travails: “I always let other people handle the finances. Those days are over. It was a good lesson. We are pulling ourselves out [of it].” She is about to photograph Justice Sonia Sotomayor for Vogue, and noted that she won't be retiring anytime soon: “I still have a few more years I have to work.” [WWD]
>> It's been almost two weeks of rolling layoffs at Conde Nast — including at Vogue and W — which have mostly been done without releasing names, but now comes news that Style.com has let go two contributors: executive fashion director Candy Pratts Price, who Anna Wintour last year dubbed "Queen of the Internet," and senior features editor Laird Borrelli-Persson.
Pratts Price's Style.com contract will not be renewed after it ends in Spring 2010, though she will remain listed as a contributing editor at Vogue, where she is rumored to have spent as much time as she did at Style.com's offices. She will likely make the magazine and its counterpart her primary outlet after her Style.com contract ends; Borrelli-Persson, meanwhile, is expected to remain at Style.com through the end of the year. The layoffs may have to do with Style.com being folded into the new-and-improved Vogue.com, although there has been no confirmation of that possibility.
Unfortunately, these cuts aren't the last at Conde Nast — word is, more are coming today.
>> Vogue Lays Off At Least Six —It was rumored yesterday that Vogue had let some staffers go on the business side, but now comes news that at least six staffers were let go today. No names or positions were released, but Conde Nast spokeswoman Maurie Perl issued the following statement: "We announced last week when we closed the four titles that there would be companywide expense cost reductions and some workforce reductions in association with the 2010 budget process. These Vogue layoffs are part of that and we have no further comment on the subject." [MediaMemo]