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ANNA, UNFAZED: Anna Wintour was just getting warmed up Tuesday night in front of a sold-out audience at the 92 Street Y when PETA attempted to take over. Yelling “Anna Wintour, Fur Shame,” a handful of protestors burst in before being forced to the exits. A nonplussed Wintour, who has been through this a few times before, then picked up where she left off. “As I was saying, fashion means a lot of different things to a lot of different people,” she said. “Vogue is there to report on the fashion industry. Fur is part of fashion and we will continue to report on it as long as that is the case.” The audience applauded.
Wintour spoke with Loews Corp. chairman Jonathan Tisch on everything from her favorite Vogue cover (it was her first, with model Michaela Bercu, wearing Guess jeans and a Christian Lacroix T-shirt), to who she’d like to have at her next dinner party (U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice) to putting Michelle Obama on the cover. She also discussed the economic downturn and how it’s playing out in the pages of Vogue. “We are being as responsible as we can be about expenses,” she said, adding there has been no pressure from above to change anything. “It’s more about a readjustment,” she said. “I don’t think Vogue should turn into ‘Recession Weekly,’” but she added that during run-throughs, she now inspects the price tags of every outfit. “Everyone is welcoming a certain sense of reality,” she noted.
This story first appeared in the May 14, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Wintour said she’s been working with Mayor Michael Bloomberg on a plan to get customers back into stores. She wouldn’t divulge details, only adding it will be unveiled next week.
Wintour said editors are “in deep discussions” about Vogue’s future online, and breaking vogue.com away from Style.com, which will happen sometime next year. Wintour has asked some of her regular writers, including André Leon Talley, to contribute online. She likes the fact that Talley, as well as Hamish Bowles, Sally Singer and Grace Coddington, are part of a “star system” at Vogue. “I don’t want doormats,” Wintour noted. “I want someone who will disagree with me.”
And speaking of stars of a different kind, Wintour talked about the Met gala and the theme, “The Model as Muse.” Does this mean Vogue will feature more models on future covers? “Well, tomorrow is another day,” she said. “But we certainly do have a model tied to the next issue, yes.” A spokesman later added there is an upcoming “model” cover in the offing but it’s not June; that issue will feature Cameron Diaz on the cover.
— Amy Wicks
LESS FREQUENCY: I-D, the edgy London-based style title, will reduce its frequency to six issues a year from 11 in response to the current economic climate. “We thought the best way of keeping the product strong was to bring out three issues a season,” said Terry Jones, who is also the title’s creative director and editor in chief. “That way we can retain the quality of photography….We didn’t want to do what other magazines have done, such as drop the quality of the paper. In order to keep going in the current climate, we’ve made the decision to do six issues a year.”
The next issue, June, will mark the magazine’s 300th. The title then will publish its August issue on July 9, to fulfill prebooked advertising pages. From September it will then publish six issues a year, with the winter and summer ones staying on newsstands for around four months. Jones said the title will be using its new schedule to develop its Web site, which will relaunch during the summer. “I don’t believe that print can be substituted [by the Internet],” said Jones. “I have ideas about the way i-D can use the Web and have the same impact as we do with print.”
— Nina Jones
STILL ROCKIN’: After shows in London and New York, Fashion Rocks soon will make its debut in Rio. Marc Jacobs and Versace have signed on as the first international fashion brands to participate and Mariah Carey is set to perform. Officially called Oi Fashion Rocks (thanks to sponsor Oi, a Brazilian telecom company), the two-day event will begin Oct. 23 with a charity dinner at the Copacabana Palace, hosted by Brazilian Vogue, followed the next day by the main event, which will take place at a specially built, 6,000-seat structure at the Jockey Club of Rio de Janeiro. “We are going to feature four local designers and four international designers,” said creative director Jason Herbert, who also worked on the show in London. He added that Christian Lamb, Madonna’s stage director, has signed on, and KCD will produce fashion segments and handle international press.
— Amy Wicks
JULIA FOR JIL: A just-posted YouTube video revealed the new face of Jil Sander’s ad campaign for Jil, the house’s latest fragrance — “It” girl and Pop magazine art director Julia Restoin-Roitfeld. The brunette daughter of Paris Vogue editor in chief Carine Roitfeld appears in a minute-and-a-half backstage clip where she muses about how “proud and flattered” she is to represent the new generation Jil Sander woman. “I like this fragrance because it’s strong at first but then evaporates, becoming lighter,” the 28-year-old Restoin-Roitfeld says in the clip. Both the video and the ad campaign were shot by photographer Jan Welters in Paris, inspired by the perfume’s graphic bottle. The fragrance is produced by Coty Inc. A Jil Sander spokesperson declined to elaborate, but said Jil will hit store counters in September, preceded by events in Munich and Milan in June and July, respectively.
— Chiara Hughes