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UPDATING YOUR PORTFOLIO: The four-month hiatus between Portfolio’s first two issues is about to end, as will the momentary lull in scrutiny of the new business magazine. The September issue is expected to look different — what some have called a redesign, a spokeswoman calls the “tinkering” intended to take place in the lag between issues one and two. The front of the book, criticized by some for its lack of magazine-style packaging and pacing, is said to be more graphic this time around, but the names of sections and basic organization reportedly are not changing.
To ramp up subscriptions, “synergistic titles” (the spokeswoman could not say which ones or how many) within the Conde Nast stable are carrying advertisements and blow-in cards for Portfolio, which didn’t happen the first time around. And speaking of those other books, the spokeswoman vehemently denied reports that fellow Conde Nast editors’ feathers were ruffled by editor in chief Joanne Lipman‘s approaching their staffs for jobs without following internal house protocol. (WWD is also owned by Conde Nast). As the magazine prepares to move monthly, it’s already made one more hire, though not within the company — Jeff Garigliano, currently executive editor of Departures, will join as senior editor in August. It remains to be seen whether the looming sale of Dow Jones will send any of Lipman’s former Wall Street Journal colleagues running to 4 Times Square. — Irin Carmon
LIVES OF THE RICH AND FABULOUS: Kimora Lee Simmons wastes no time making sure viewers of her new reality show, “Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane,” clearly understand her “fabulosity.” “I’ve had billboards; that’s my life,” she says, matter-of-factly. Inside her home, the first episode of the weekly show begins with her uniformed staff preparing for the day and a distressed Simmons trying to find the person who moved her teddy bear from a mantelpiece to a chair. Later, inside the offices of Baby Phat — which felt sort of like an urban episode of “The Office” — she has something of a meltdown over a variety of crises, from her intense desire for a granola bar to, in her words, “being a little flustered.” “I feel very Anna Nicole Smith right now,” she relates at one point, explaining, “She liked pink like I like pink.” Later, she observes of an apparently contented colleague, “You must have got some last night.” Estranged hubby and godfather of rap Russell Simmons stops by the Baby Phat offices and Kimora tries to cut his cuticles.
This story first appeared in the July 18, 2007 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
But the hour-long opening episode revolves around a new Russian-inspired ad campaign for Baby Phat. James Campbell, senior director of marketing, spends most of the episode trying not to have a meltdown of his own, since the clothes for the campaign — including sweatsuits and T-shirts — look more suitable for a trip to the Bahamas than to Moscow and there is no clear ad budget just six days before the shoot. Mary Alice Stephenson makes an appearance on the show, on the actual day of the shoot. Working as a “wardrobe stylist,” she says that it’s “not an ordinary fashion shoot when you work with Kimora,” a fact that becomes even clearer as viewers witness Simmons barking like a dog for the camera. The show begins on Aug. 5 on the Style Network and will continue weekly in half-hour episodes. — Amy Wicks
WORKING BEAUTY: Beauty coverage and advertising may not be the first things that come to mind at the mention of Working Mother magazine, but like so many publishers looking to attract the still print-faithful beauty industry’s pages, Joan Sheridan would like to change that. By hiring Beth Brandes Roth from CosmoGirl to be the magazine’s first beauty and fashion director for advertising sales, Sheridan said, “we are making a real focused effort on the beauty and fashion community to tell them the story of the information needs of our readers, and how they can reach them.”
After Drugs & Remedies, the Publisher’s Information Bureau puts Toiletries and Cosmetics second on its list of biggest advertising categories, and though that category’s pages purchased last year in all magazines were flat, reported revenue was up 8.7 percent. Working Mother gets some beauty advertising already, from brands like Olay and Suave, Sheridan said, and its “You” section covers fashion and beauty.
“Today, women want to know what all their options are….Definitely, a woman with a career has the spending power to buy luxury products.” She cited long-lasting lipsticks as a sign the beauty industry was paying attention to women who, in her words, drop their kids off to school and go straight to work. — I.C.