Tag Archives: Paris Vogue

First, Last

A blogger of workshy persuasion, I will ordinarily commence a new post with a confetti of apologies for my radio silence.

This one will begin differently.

It begins with a thank you to each and all of those who have taken the time to write such beautifully kind and thoughtful messages since Napoleon’s accident. I’ve been quite the emotional wreck these past weeks and – much like receiving a little hug – your words have proven in turns cheering, fortifying and hugely touching.  

Napoleon is beginning to do much better. 

In the tradition of all bloody annoying male stalwarts – think of Shakespeare’s ‘Ay, ay, a scratch, a scratch’ Mercutio – he’s taken to complaining about my “fussing” him.  Where such defiant ingratitude might otherwise cause my displeasure, I interpret it as a sign that things really must be on the mend… and then fuss the poor bugger some more.

Wicked, me?

This first post coincides with a last. 

Madame Roitfeld’s final issue of Paris Vogue went on sale last week.  As though projected through a television screen, the cover editorial Coeur a Corps Perdu features a swanlike – albeit for a broken neck and overplucked eyebrows – Saskia de Brauw.  It gives witty ode to Roitfeld’s successor, “Emmanuelle”, with its erotic 1970s aesthetic. 

I’ve yet to fully consult Google translate read my copy but, already, my favourite part is Carine’s Edito

Handwritten and without marshmallow mawkishness, the closing observation – ‘It’s because everything must end that everything is so beautiful’ – brings a poetic poignancy to this, her farewell edition.

À bientôt, Carine.

|The Fashion Spot – Vogue Paris|


Filed under Style Souk

Enfant Terrible

Yesterday started unremarkably enough.

And then it happened.

News came.

Emmanuelle Alt – a Balmain-clad rock star amongst fashion stylists – was named the shiny new and box fresh Editor-in-Chief of Vogue Paris.

The decision to elevate her – in the aftermath of Carine ‘My Middle Name Is Controversy’ Roitfeld’s tenure – intimates that the magazine is not set for a radical change of course.

Vogue Paris is doing very well and I wanted to entrust the editorship to someone who can provide continuity while bringing new life,” Xavier Ramotet, the president of Condé Nast France, commented yesterday.

It is this reference to continuity that reassures.

Alt takes the helm after a decade of service under Roitfeld and symbolises, in every way, the progeny – the literal enfant terrible – of Carine’s cradle. 

It is impossible to disassociate Madame Roitfeld from Paris Vogue, but – under Alt’s new direction – we can be certain that her legacy and sensual aesthetic will not be sharp-shouldered entirely aside. 

The appointment – and all that it auspiciously represents for the magazine’s continued relevance – might best be summed by Emmanuelle herself in the closing words of this video

Joy everywhere,” indeed.

|Jak & Jil|


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She’d dropped enough hints.

Interviewed by The Guardian in 2009, Carine Roitfeld – libertine, provocateur and editor-in-chief of Paris Vogue – mused, prophetically, on the future of her career:

“I love to change.  I have been here eight years; I think maybe 10 years is good. But for now, I am very happy in my little Paris.”

Nonetheless, when official confirmation came last week that Roitfeld is to step down – after ten years of service with the Condé Nast publication – the fashion world shook with a collective Oh My F*cking Dieu.

And how.

“Listening to Carine Roitfeld talk is like having Chanel No 5 eau de parfum dripped, very slowly, into your ear.  If it were possible to bottle that accent, it would surely be found to contain the very DNA of sexy-French womanliness.” 

This quote – the most evocative I have ever read of Roitfeld – can aptly extend to her editorial influence. 

Without censure, Roitfeld tattooed the pages of Paris Vogue with the most urgent elements of her DNA.  Uncompromising.  Visceral.  Luxurious.  Tribal.  Anti-establishment.  Sexual.  The magazine was remade in her icon.

Unlike her glacial counterpart across the Atlantic, Anna Wintour – who helms a corporate, nipple-free, celebrity-centric Vogue – Roitfeld has found a constant bedfellow in controversy.  

She sits, unapologetically, at the limit. 

We have to fight to keep this un-politically correct attitude of French Vogue.  But it’s more and more difficult… you cannot smoke, you cannot show arms, you cannot show little girls.  Everything we do now is like walking in high heels on the ice, but we keep trying to do it.”

It is for this – her commitment to a creative vision and fearlessness in the defence of it – that Roitfeld epitomised, more than any other, an editrix of extraordinary daring. 

In a world where dollar is king and commercial interests rule sovereign, she stood one of very few to implode taboos and reimagine our boundaries of morality and fashion.  

There will, of course, be other visionaries to fill her spike heels.  A new editrix – Emmanuelle Alt or Virginie Mouzat, anyone? – to take the magazine onward. 

But for this reader, Carine Roitfeld will always remain.


|Stockholm Streetstyle, Quotes: The Guardian, The New York Times|

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