The September issue is the most important magazine of the year in the industry of fashion, being dubbed the fashion bible and the must-have issue for every devoted, loyal and self-proclaimed fashion follower. Anna Wintour has been doing a relatively good job since she came into power back in 1988 and hasn’t stopped since. But lately some seem to think that Wintour has been lacking in her abrasive and usually straightforward decisions leading up to the very important month in fashion.
By choosing Kendall Jenner, infamous for being a part of the chaotic Kardashian-Jenner clan to be the star of the front cover, Wintour took a risk. This issue simply features nothing more than Jenner, and it seems that not everyone is happy with the decision.
Backlash comes with the ‘death’ of Vogue US as loyal fans commented on how the legacy of the publication has gone downhill since Wintour began associating with the Kardashians, and that the target market of the magazine has been downgraded to young teens. Jenner has been called the ‘breakout model of her generation’. But that title is shaky. It seems that history repeats itself with some calling Jenner a tasteless option when there could have been so many other more deserving models to take the front cover.
Entertainment Tonight Rebecca Romijn had called out Jenner and other models who had been pulled from the ashes due to their family name and fortune, outlining the idea that the popularity of a model on social media defines her as a ‘supermodel’. This debate of whether or not Jenner had the right to be on the cover comes as many still resonate with the golden days of Vogue, where only the most beloved and in-demand supermodels of that era could land a cover. We miss the likes of Linda Evangelista or Twiggy or even Naomi Campbell.
But now, it seems as if all the hard work that so many models put in towards their career is being shunned for celebrities and anyone with a fortune to their name. Celebrity endorsement in both publication, runway, and even in campaigns have become a fixation for the industry where there is more of a recognition value [of the celebrity] than for the consumer. No longer are models able to make a name for themselves, because they’re pushed aside with small jobs while celebrity-models like Jenner eat up all the big jobs.
But it shouldn’t be a big surprise to anyone. Even back in 1999, supermodel Heidi Klum had speculated on the celebrity-trend that consumers related more to someone that they saw often. This means that celebrities on covers are more profitable for publications due to this alignment that consumers have with them.
But in saying that, what is the value of fashion and the industry, especially for Vogue as one of the biggest publishers and trendsetters of the industry when it’s become no more than another selling point for profitability and less about fashion?