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April 21 2014

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9 posts tagged "Cecil Beaton"

Did You Get The Memo? Diana Vreeland In Her Own Words

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Memos: The Vogue Years

“Our cover situation is drastic…We are on the verge of a drastic emergency.” So reads the first entry in the latest Diana Vreeland tome, Memos: The Vogue Years. Compiled by Vreeland’s grandson Alexander (the husband of Lisa Immordino Vreeland, who directed The Eye Has to Travel), the book features more than 250 of Vreeland’s infamous notes from her time at Vogue, which she’d dictate over the phone to her secretary while puffing on cigarettes in a wicker chair in the bathroom of her Park Avenue apartment. This, Alexander told us, was her preferred mode of communication. “She didn’t believe in meetings,” he said. His assertion is backed up by Diana’s memo to the Vogue team on page fifty-nine, in which she considers holding a meeting about the “controversial” topic of dress lengths, but resolves, “Usually, when we have meetings, we don’t get ideas and views from people.”

But it wasn’t just her staff whom she’d confront about everything from the importance of pearls and bangles to her annoyance with the mistreatment of her initials in her editor’s letter (above), to the necessity that Vogue‘s spreads “never, ever copy…any kind of coiffure that is reminiscent of the 30s, 40s, 50s,” via her rapier dictations. The book—which is available now from Rizzoli—also includes her correspondences with the likes of Richard (or Dick, as she called him) Avedon, Irving Penn (to whom she complains about lackluster tulips), Cecil Beaton, Cristobal Balenciaga (above), Halston, Veruschka, and beyond. Continue Reading “Did You Get The Memo? Diana Vreeland In Her Own Words” »

Here, There Is Some Black In The Union Jack

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“John Galliano has really tiny feet—almost childlike,” observed a guest at the opening of SHOWstudio Shop’s Blackwhite exhibition in London Friday night. She was inspecting a pair of well-worn ballet slippers owned by the Dior designer, along with a collection of other Galliano artifacts, assembled in a shoebox by Lady Amanda Harlech—one of the few people in the world, we imagine, who has access to this sort of thing—and dusted with a thick coating of white baby powder (pictured, above). Childlike? Well, as they say, if the shoe fits. “They were from when he was a child,” explained shop curator Carrie Scott. “I am guessing his feet have grown since then.”

The Galliano box was one of many pieces on sale at Nick Knight’s event, where every piece was on sale, and, true to the title, black and white. (The only spots of color were the red check marks on a vintage contact sheet of Cecil Beaton’s—a roll of shots of Audrey Hepburn in full My Fair Lady regalia.) Also on offer: Irving Penn’s iconic portrait of Lisa Fonssagrives in a harlequin-print cape; a few Chanel couture headpieces by Kamo; a Knight shot of Kate Moss; Michael Howells’ black and white Union Jack (pictured, top), which was used for the 25th anniversary of London fashion week in September 2009; and a disturbing white bondage table created by artist Peter Saville, complete with painful-looking prongs and harnesses. Its title? Fashion.

Blackwhite runs through June 19 at SHOWstudio.com Shop, 1-9 Bruton Pl., London, www.shop.showstudio.com.

Photos: Courtesy of SHOWStudio.com

On The Beaton Trail

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When Vogue asked Cecil Beaton to travel to Haiti in 1935, the result was a portfolio of indelible images of the island, its architecture, and its people. To help benefit the American Red Cross’ relief efforts in the earthquake-devastated nation, a selection of Beaton’s photos of what he called the “extraordinary isle” are now being offered for purchase. Please visit Vogue.com to learn more.

Photo: Cecil Beaton / Conde Nast Archive

London Celebrates A Doggy Do

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“It’s not a dog-eat-dog world,” Kate Moss’ hairdresser, James Brown, said at James Purdey & Sons in Mayfair last night, as he was smothered by a very happy pooch. “It’s a dog-lick-human world.” The fashion set may be used to cattiness, but at the book launch for Dogs in Vogue: A Century of Canine Chic, by Central Saint Martins lecturer Judith Watt, the claws were retracted and there was nothing but puppy love.

As Vogue put it back in the thirties, “The next best thing to having the world at your feet is to have a dog at your heels.” And the guests in attendance, from Stephen Jones and Camilla Al Fayed to designers Christopher Kane, Erdem Moralioglu, and Roksanda Ilincic, seemed very much to agree. In honor of the occasion, the designers had even worked on a series of limited-edition doggy-themed T-shirts, the proceeds from which will go to the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association. (They’ll be available at John Lewis.)

Watt’s monograph collects work from some of fashion photography’s masters, including Cecil Beaton, Mario Testino, Helmut Newton, and Patrick Demarchelier, all of whom have turned their lens on the four-legged. But it was a little hard to focus on the printed page when there were so many adorable pups in the flesh, including Watt’s own dachshund, Wiggles (now immortalized on Erdem’s tee). She and her pals padded around a custom-made “hound’s-tooth” carpet, and the night passed, blessedly, with no accidents.

Photo: Camilla Al Fayed and Judith Watt, with Wiggles, at the Dogs in Vogue launch