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carine roitfeld adam moss bill wackermann hugo lindgren ariel foxman larry hackett kate reardon tom florio and more!
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my day won’t come. it’s already here.
i am generation
Gettin’ it a D ily!
RICHARD CHAI LOVE
MARIAH MOMENT! With Nick Cannon
Where’s Mariah? She’s with the kids. She never comes to shows! She does occasionally, but only for designers she’s really close with. faSHION ICONS WITH FERN UPDATE!
She’s interviewing DvF on 9/12, Marc Jacobs on 11/6, and Polly Mellen on 12/12. Get tix now at 92y.org!
With Meredith Melling Burke
your daily dose HEARD
“It reminds me of raving in the late nineties. That’s why I like it so much.”—David Neville on his latest obsession, SoulCycle, post Rag & Bone’s men’s show. ☛ “There’s nothing terribly bourgeois about me.”—Avril Graham at the Tents. ☛ “It’s more of a motorcycle thing. When I run around town, I wear Tom Ford.”—Kiehl’s president Chris Salgardo, on plaid, at Costello Tagliapietra. ☛ “We broke up four years ago, and I still see him around sometimes. He’s so different. Awkward!”—a post-show Chadwick Bell on his most recent heartbreak.
With Sanya RichardsRoss, Olympic gold medalist for track and field
With Joanna Coles
Congrats on the new job! I’m sure you want to know what my first order of business is—I’ll be asking the entire staff to lose 20 pounds. Right! What will happen to your assistant, Sergio? He’s coming with me. He’s very excited to have even more readers to torture on our website. He’s always dreamed of working for Cosmo. When he was in Russia, he saw it as a beacon of female liberation. He’s beyond excited. He’ll still be doing his column for you. His readers will not be disappointed. How are you feeling? Very excited. I’m a little exhausted with all the sex positions I have to try, but it is what it is. When do you officially start? Monday. I’m here with the fashion group from Cosmo. Anne Fulenwider has already elbowed me out of my seat at Marie Claire. How do you feel about your replacement? She’ll be phenomenally good. She loves the brand and loves fashion. She’s also thinner, younger, and has better arms than me, and I have good arms. What’s JoCo’s Cosmo going to look like? If you find out, please let me know. The fashion is going to change, but I haven’t figured out exactly how. How was the DNC? I was chairing a panel on female leadership. It was a fantastic show of woman politicians. I wanted to ask them about government policy, and they wanted to ask me FA SHIO W Egoing E K D Ato I L Y. O M Cosmo. what I Nwas doCwith FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
With Max and Lubov Azria
You brought your medals with you! Who leaves home without their medals? They’re the best accessories. Can we hold them? Of course! Do you sleep with them? No, but my dad does.
Retouched by an Angel!
WHAT IF… Marc Jacobs and Oscar de la Renta switched coifs?
Are you scared of talking to the press? I’m very reserved. We’ll be kind! What are you looking forward to this fall? I got really into the theater last year. I just saw Jake Gyllenhaal’s new play, and I have tickets to see Sam Shepard’s new one, as well. We loved Once. Me too! I dressed (lead actress) Cristin Milioti for the Tony Awards. How was your summer? Excellent. I rented a house in Shelter Island, but I left before Pippa Middleton got there.
MEET & GREET!
With Marie Claire’s new EIC Anne Fulenwider
Congratulations on the new gig! Does this feel like the first day of school? It does, and it was actually my daughter’s first day of school, as well. I got to walk her there, but unfortunately, she didn’t get to bring me to this! How did you get the job? It was a phone call! What’s your strategty as EIC? I’m going to go in, roll my sleeves up and continue to do what they are doing so well. Will you be bringing anybody in? I actually hired a lot of the features editors, and they are doing such a great job. What’s your trademark? I can’t wait to figure that out. Maybe a new haircut, because everybody seems to get those for Fashion Week! patric k mcmu l l an . com ( 4 ) ; bfan y c . com ( 2 ) ; G ett y images ( 7 )
Makeup artistry by Charlotte Willer. © 2012 Maybelline LLC.
With Charlotte Free at Maybelline New York’s FNO station on 9th Ave.
Oscar de la Renta and SJP
Chances are your purse is full of what you need to put your best self forward—makeup for those quick touch-ups, portable flats to dash from show to show, and sunglasses for the front row. But what about a solid on-the-go snack? And we don’t mean breath mints! Why not throw in a snack that keeps you feeling good as well as looking good? Here are a few that won’t clutter your clutch.
your daily dose scene
What a scene it was! The Meatpacking district, in particular, was wackadoo, as some sort of dance party in the windows of Tracey Reese made for quite a spectacle. Book Marc asked all guests for IDs, Earnest Sewn gave free haircuts, Ice Breaker Merino gave away back massages. At the Marc Jacobs store, you could even take your photo with a rat—but a few places, like Jack Spade and Ralph Lauren on Bleecker, chose to sit this one out. Can you imagine?
Have you had to pose for a lot of photos tonight? I’ve done like one hundred photos. The smile is burnt into my face permanently, but that’s OK… It’s Fashion Week! Are you walking in a lot of shows? I’m like short with pink hair—I’m not a show pony. I’m going to do whatever I get and be happy. Nice platforms! They’re from Japan! I really suck at walking in heels, so I thought I was going to fall, but I haven’t yet. What will you do the rest of the night? I’ll probably shake some more hands, meet more people and spread my love and energy around. What are you up to next? I really want to go to the rainforest!
3 FAVE MOMENTS FROM FNO!
SHOP TALK! With Stacey Bendet How would you describe With Sami the chaos in Meatpacking? Gayle Halloween being eaten by a fashion fraternity party. Have a hangover cure? My homemade almond milk mixed with coconut water, but if you’re not in my kitchen, I would go with a large coffee, two Advils, and a mid-morning Bloody Mary.
LUNA Bar: It’s the perfect balance of protein, fiber, and the Core 4 vitamins and minerals women need most. Bonus: sweet tooth satisfaction!
Unsalted Nuts: They’re nutrient dense and satisfying, plus they pack light and keep hunger at bay.
1. ANNA + CALVIN = HEAVEN! Francisco Costa, Dwayne Wade, Anna Wintour, and Italo Zucchelli graced the Calvin Klein Collection flagship on Madison Avenue.
2. BALLET BEAUTIFUL! The prima ballerina turned fitness guru Mary Helen Bowers canoodled with Gilles Mendel and Angela Lindvall at the J.Mendel boutique on Madison.
3. RUSSIAN CHIC! Anya Ziourova and Anna Dello Russo joined forces at Ferragamo to take in a performance from Russian New Wave pop band Tesla Boy.
AB alert! re NYFD hotties hit the DKNY sto for FNO. Thank you, Donna!
MAN ON THE STREET! Meet Nadine Irvine, 28
DIY Trail Mix: A blend of whole grain cereal, nuts, and dried cranberries guarantees a quick snack to tide you over in the front row.
Why are you waiting in line at DvF? First of all, I’m a stylist. I love Diana (sic) von Furstenberg. And Solange is going to be DJing! I can’t wait to see what Diana’s new collection is going to be like. How long have you been in line? Twenty minutes, and if I have to wait another hour, I will. How much are you spending? No more than two or three thousand dollars. I’m trying to behave myself.
CHIC EATS! With Peter Som at Elizabeth Charles
You love a neighborhood store! I do! This is a block away from my apartment, and there’s another one in my hometown of San Francisco. Your show starts in what, 12 hours? The last few weeks have been sleepless, but all in the name of fashion. I look like
chic roadkill, but I’m happy to take a break before I go back to the studio. Mastered any new dishes lately? I go very simple in the summer, actually—my heirloom tomatoes and burrata are a staple. And you know I love an ice cream sandwich!
patrickmcmullan . com ( 2 ) ; G etty images ( 7 ) ; billy farrell ( 3 ) ; oscar / S J P : james nord
Jay Fielden and Valerie Salembier Harry Benson and Ash Carter
front row Brandusa Niro Editor in Chief, CEO Executive Editor Ashley Baker
TOWN & COUNTRY PARTY ANNIVERSARY CHATTER! With Jay Fielden
your daily dose
Art Director Guillaume Bruneau Managing Editor Tangie Silva
How are you feeling? Better than ever! Everything is upside for us—we’re clicking, the newsstand is going well, the ad pages are Sara Armenta going up. Annelise Any favorite editorial coups? Peterson The cover about summer camp! I loved going so far afield and showing four young girls diving into a lake, instead of a Hollywood celebrity. It’s liberating as an editor, and hopefully for the readers as well. Did you worry it wouldn’t sell? You’re always afraid of that, but Michael you’d better take some chances Clinton, Mario while you can! I think there’s an inBuatta ertia starting to surround the celebrity approach to covers. Readers feel the oldness of it the way that editors do. Love the mag’s unisexy feel. The co-ed quality is inherent to the magazine historically. We experience most of our lives around both men and Graziano de Boni, women—silo-ing Olivia Chantecaille, Malcolm magazines into sepaand Ken Downing Carfrae and rate gender groups feels Nacole Snoep a bit odd to me!
Aww alert! Despite a lastminute venue change—John DeLucie’s newest haute spot, Bill’s, was still under construction— Jay Fielden brought the chic set all the way uptown to The Crown to toast his first year at Town & Country. ☛ Much further downtown, Glamour celebrated Diet Coke’s new look with a party at The Box. The CFDA collabed on a t-shirt design contest, and L’Wren Scott, one of the judges, presented the award to design student Gustavo Alonso. He went home with a $10,000 scholarship...and his shirt is now in Target stores nationwide!
THE DAILY WONDERS… Who should take over T ?
Sally, Adam Moss: The person we miss who keeps being rumored ‘ya! for the job—Deborah Needleman—seems like a very good idea to me. She’s really talented, and she’d fit into The Times culture very well. That’s an important part of that job. Coco Rocha: I have no idea. What’s that? Bruce Weber: I’m just a photographer! Rachel Zoe: Sally is brilliant, but there’s so many incredible people in this business. Paul Wilmot: Simon Spurr would do a great job.
I think Steven [Kolb] told me I was judging a wet T shirt contest at The Box! Guess not…” —L’WREN SCOTT
Glamour LIVE BASH
FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
Associate Editor Alexandra Ilyashov Senior Fashion Writer Maria Denardo Social Media Director Ashley Tschudin Photographer Giorgio Niro Deputy Art Director Teresa Platt Senior Designers Paul Morris, Sheila Prevost
TEE TALK! With CINDI LEIVE The Joy Formidable performed tonight—what’s the most recent thing that brought you joy? My cup of Stumptown coffee! Is that shallow? Also, the girl who took my ticket at BCBG turned out to be a kid I last saw in my hometown when she was Helena literally two years old. Cool! and Sofia Mattsson Who’s most formidable during MBFW? Marc Jacobs, because he gets everyone to actually show up early. What’s your favorite item that comes in a box? Chocolates, duh. And Alaia shoes. How much Diet Coke do you consume daily? Minimally, two. But only on weekdays. What’s the backstory behind your favorite tee? It’s a toss-up between my Stella McCartney horse tee shirt—in heavy rotation right now—and the all-time classic, my Swarthmore College Phoenix tee shirt, a memento of my time on the college newspaper. It’s real vintage, not faux vintage! Beneath those two shirts, The winning there is a deep pile of Alexander Wang pocket tees in shirt design many, many colors. What T shirt slogan would be most MBFW-apropos? “I Swear I Had a Ticket.”
Deputy Editor Eddie Roche
Photo Editors Jessica Athanasiou-Piork, Shane Cisneros, Catherine Gargan Production & Distribution Director Allison Coles Imaging Specialist George Maier Copy Editors Joyce Artinian, Joey Meyer, Stefanie Schwalb Production Manager Del Pastrana Imaging Assistant Megan Herlihy Vice President, Publisher Louis A. Sarmiento Advertising Director Maritza Smith Marketing Director Fred Miketa Digital Director Daniel Chivu Publishing Assistant Anjali Raja Distribution Manager Shomari Hines Distribution Supervisors Ben Woldoff, Nick Mathis To advertise, contact: Louis Sarmiento, (212) 467-5875, email@example.com
DAILY FRONT ROW, INC.
The Daily Front Row is a Daily Front Row, Inc. publication. Copyright 2012©. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited. Requests for reprints must be submitted in writing to: The Daily, Attn: Tangie Silva,135 West 50th Street, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10020. Printed by Vanguard Printing, LLC., William Sherman.
Coco Rocha and James Conran Bill Wackermann
On the cover: Carine Roitfeld shot by Giorgio Niro this page : bfanyc . com ( 1 1 ) ; patrickmcmullan . com ( 9 )
“no need to tighten your belt when you practice
fall collection 2012
don’t sweater it
skirting the issue
miss fancy pants DBP, Toluene and Formaldehyde free
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LUTZ LOVIN’! f with “I like surrounding myselke me ma o wh le op pe talented jo.]” better, like Bernardo [Re Brad Richards, Kellan Lutz, and Ryan Lochte
your daily dose
Where to Eat Right This Minute!
From Bon Appétit’s Feast or Fashion team Overstimulated? Heavily caffeinated? Lunch is required. Recharge and relax at these fashion-forward, Tents-centric restos.
SECOND ACTS! With Tamara Mellon at Kimberly Ovitz
You’ve been out of the limelight! I know! I have a non-compete for a while, obviously, and it’s the first time in 20 years I’ve had a break. What’s your typical day like? I just bought a house in the Hamptons that I’m decorating, and I’m looking at a lot more art. I went to speak at the FT luxury summit and I’ve been doing some traveling with David Cameron because I’m the ambassador for International Trade. When can you return to work? February 2013. Will you? Yes, obviously in fashion. We’ll leave it at that!
Bar Boulud/ Boulud Epicerie/Boulud Sud Daniel Boulud has been a longtime chicster favorite. Pop in to Bar Boulud for the scene and the charcuterie, Boulud Epicerie for take-out, and Boulud Sud for your next business meeting. 1900 Broadway, (212) 595-0303 Telepan Just blocks away from the catwalks, this produce-driven haven serves up a seasonal menu that satiates any fashion-
loving herbivore. 72 West 69th St, (212) 580-4300 PJ Clarke’s Sometimes it’s best to keep it simple! Belly up to the bar for a hearty burger and a tall pint at this Irish pub that’s become a New York institution. 44 West 63rd St., (212) 957-9700 Salumeria Rossi Take a minute to appreciate the Italians this week when you stop by this neighborhood salumi bar. Wine is not optional. 283 Amsterdam Ave., (212) 877-4801 Nougatine And where exactly would fashion—or food—be without the French? Check out this casual Jean-Georges spot for his signature tuna tartare. 1 Central Park West, (212) 299-3900
Musing and Perusing with Simon Doonan at Costello Tagliapietra
How was your summer? Fabulous. I spent a lot of time in Shelter Island paddle boarding, not to be confused with water boarding. What are you looking forward to this week? Dressing for the shows is becoming very flamboyant, and that’s become an incentive to go. It’s like Versailles!
CREATIVE DIRECTING! With Bernardo Rejo
Man of the moment Ryan Lochte was here. Thoughts? Really charming, great personality. He’s one of those great American heroes, so why not have him at the show? Did you watch the Olympics? Actually, no! That skin! Those cheek bones! Yep! Actually, I won’t comment on that.
LIT CRIT! With Hunger Games star Alexander Ludwig
Is this your first fashion show? This was actually my second! I went to a Versace one in Milan. I like how they keep them short and sweet. We’re at the New York Public Library. Been here before? No! I’m from Vancouver, Canada. New York’s a rare occurrence, but it’s unbelievable. Last book you got from the library? Probably The Hunger Games!
POUTS that Pop! Searching for that statement shade that will make your lips their very own fashion accessory? Maybelline New York’s Color Sensational High Shine Lip Gloss comes in 12 glorious shades that vow to get the job done. High-res hues and ultracreamy texture ensure maximum punch, and at just $7.49, you’re practically compelled to try out every shade. It’s available in October! FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
firstview (7); getty images (4); courtesy joseph abboud; c o u r t e s y t e l e pa n
Belvedere is a quality choice. Drinking responsibly is too. Belvedere Vodka 40% ALC./VOL. (80 PROOF) 100% neutral spirits distilled from rye grain. ÂŠ2012 Imported by MoĂŤt Hennessy USA, Inc., New York, NY.
NEW YORK BERS BY THE NUM
Circulation: 400,000 (rate base) Staffers on editorial masthead: 59 Staffers on digital masthead: 61 236 Staffers on company masthead: 2012 ASME Awards Scored: 3 e (Single-Topic Issue; Criticism; Magazin Section) and 2 “Digital Ellies” Average monthly page views of NYMag.com: 51.8 million on Average monthly unique visitors NYMag.com: 7.3 million Moss’ first major accolade: Named Editor of the Year by AdAge in 2001 for his work at The New York Times Magazine And again! He scored the award in 2007 for New York FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
You rip out—and have possibly ripped off—his brilliant infographics. His long-form journalism makes your heart beat heavy. After eight years and 15 Ellies, New York magazine EIC Adam Moss has captured the city’s zeitgeist with such veracity that lesser editors are in the midst of a collective existential crisis. BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV portrait giorgio niro
ow, exactly, does New York dissect a topic as broad as New York with such minutiae? For us, New York is not a place. It’s an attitude—a way of looking at the world. We don’t see the magazine or any of our sites as being about the city’s concrete jungle. We see the world through a certain kind of urban lens. Once you think of New York as a pair of eyes as opposed to a place, it becomes more or less evident what you should be paying attention to. What’s your management style? It varies; I’m super involved in some parts of New York, and I’m sure some people are sick and tired of me! I leave other parts of that world entirely alone. It really has to do with where I can be most helpful and effective. Some things I don’t know anything about. There are much smarter people here to deal with that stuff. Like what? I would never, for instance, pretend to make a fashion judgment. There are people here who understand the fashion world and how it operates, and know what’s good and what’s not good, tons better than me. How do you delegate in those more hands-off areas? Mainly by practice. There are areas in which I have comments after the fact, but people get used to being given a lot of freedom. Over time, the staff figures out
the places I’ll be active in more day-to-day, and those that I’ll look at from afar. And what are you extremely involved in? The cover. That’s an important page! I will pay more attention to it than other pages. What’s the secret weapon to your cover concepts? Are you asking if there’s an editorial assistant somewhere who’s an amazing cover conceptualizer? That would be fantastic, if there was such a person. Maybe there is somebody like that we haven’t discovered.
“Once you think of New York as a pair of eyes as opposed to a place, it becomes more or less evident what you should be paying attention to.” But in reality, the covers are a team effort between myself, [photography director] Jody Quon, our art department, and the editorial director, Jared Hohlt. And what’s that process like? We generally make multiple cover variations and decide at the last minute which one makes the most sense. We keep the cover options in competition with each other—we close the magazine on Friday mornings, and cover decisions are often made on Thursday nights. What makes for a successful cover? Surprise is the main element.
If you look at the “Is America Dead?” cover, it’s a riff on a famous Time cover, “Is God Dead?”; it’s an arresting line; the “Um, no” adds some humor. A lot of what makes these covers powerful, I hope, is that we keep switching them up. They don’t fall into a particular pattern. Do you worry about newsstand sales? Newsstand is not a very big factor around here, and since I’ve been here, it never has been. We are essentially a subscription magazine. We basically give the magazine away for free, online, before it’s on newsstands. Do you ever see an issue and wish you could fast-forward a week? I don’t think we succeed all the time—we’re moving fast—but we have a pretty high percentage of covers I do like. Are you a visual guy? The visual aspect is one of the parts of the magazine editing process that I enjoy most. Which visual trademarks have been cribbed most shamelessly by other mags? Others would probably answer that by citing the infographic treatments, especially the Approval Matrix. It’s flattering. In general, telling stories through elaborate graphics is one of our key visual elements that people have picked up. Would you be willing to divulge your strongest on-staff wordsmiths and packagers? No! Do you think I’m crazy? INSETS: COURTESY
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ASHION! ADAM ON F
What’s your personal style? Ad hoc! What’s a typical look for you? Jeans and a button down shirt of some kind…. Are you a retail savant? I like to shop—for an hour at a time. I quickly get exhausted by the whole thing. It can be exciting to go into a new store, or an old store with new clothes. I’m into that. Do you have any desire to go to Paris or Milan? I’d like to because I think it’d be fun and interesting, but it’s not my job. That’s the job of our fashion director, Amy Larocca. My opinion doesn’t really matter. I go to shows in New York because it’s pleasurable, and I get some general ideas about how to cover fashion. What’s your sched like during New York’s Fashion Week? I go to some shows, but it’s always closing week, so it’s hard to get out of the office. But believe me, I’d love to go to show after show after show. I really enjoy them! Seriously? I don’t enjoy the waiting, but once the lights darken and the music starts, I’m very happy. Are you front row? Usually, I guess. What do you expect from attending a fashion show? I don’t know…it’s like going to the theater: the lights dim, you get excited, and you hope you see something good. FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
I hate the word packaging, though it’s now become ubiquitous in this business. Packaging is just a smart and inventive marriage of text and design—it’s what a magazine is, really! Our magazine relies on the interplay of text and images to tell stories; we definitely don’t segregate them. How would you describe your temperament as an editor? Easily distracted. I like to work on a lot of things at once. I’ve never had a writer’s personality because they really have to burrow into one subject. Plus, I’m not interested in my byline. Does your style of managing and involvement differ from your EIC peers? I’m less involved in the specific edit of a story, and I know editors at other magazines tend to be more so. We just move too fast at New York for me to do that. I’ll read a story and ask some questions—sometimes I’ve made judgments on a story from the front end, but I don’t get involved very much in the text editing of it. We have great people here, so let them do what they’re good at. How big is the New York staff? Oh man, I don’t even know! In terms of people involved with making content, I’d guess 100? Maybe more. Does it seem like a big team? It never feels large enough. I always wish there was more help! There are some people involved in this process [of making New York] that I recognize but never talk to. What’s your hiring approach? I mainly look for smart people who look at the world in a way I like. Experience is less important to me than a useful perspective. How often have you been recruited for other jobs? I have received phone calls from time to time, asking if I’d be interested in certain positions, but I’ve never answered yes. I’m flattered by the inquiries, generally, but I’m not interested in doing anything else. Who are your industry role models? I learned about reporting and journalism from Joe Lelyveld, who was executive editor at The New York Times when I was there. During my tenure at Esquire, I worked with Lee Eisenberg and Byron Dobell from that great magazine era of the sixties. Those were some great teachers from a time when magazines were a more central part of the culture; I was very lucky to have learned from them! And I look to Clay
Felker, whom I never worked with, as almost a partner in what I do. In my head, at least. Which of your peers is really killing it right now? There are plenty of magazines out there that I admire! I look at Businessweek covers weekly and I think, ‘Man, how did they do that?!’, because I know something about the pace of a weekly. But there’s almost no magazine that I look at without some degree of envy. How do you think Hugo is handling things at The New York Times Magazine? He’s doing a good job. I know Hugo pretty well and I’ve worked with him here and there, so he’s editing the magazine I would’ve thought he would have edited. It’s exciting, it’s strong, and he’s working with a lot of good people, many of whom I’ve also known for a long time. But I doubt I look at The New York Times Magazine objectively. Having had that job before, and knowing the people who are doing it now, brings so much else to my reading of it. What do you think of Jill Abramson’s work? I think Jill is doing a very effective job. The Times is very good at the moment, but it would be hard for me to tell you what Jill is doing that’s different from her predecessors.
“There are plenty of magazines out there that I admire. I look at Businessweek covers and I think, ‘Man, how did they do that?!’ because I know something about the pace of a weekly. But there’s almost no magazine that I look at without some degree of envy.” There’s great continuity—and I mean that in the best way! Is BuzzFeed a competitor? Well, it’s all competitive! Websites in general are competitive today. When you add up all of our verticals, we’re publishing a general-interest title. But if we’re doing our job right, we don’t, in fact, compete directly with anyone. New York was a true trailblazer online. Did you have to fight to make that happen? Not at all! As a group, we were very clear on what we wanted, and this particular team was assembled coinciding with the
new ownership, including Bruce Wasserstein. One of our initial goals was to move as fast as we could to build out our digital content. Digital wasn’t something to be afraid of: it was something to be embraced. Why was this the moment to give The Cut a standalone site? I wouldn’t say there’s any good reason for doing it now, except that we finally got it together to do it. We’ve marshaled a lot of talent to make it happen. We always thought we could make a smart, beautiful, fast, interactive, funny website about fashion and other topics. Any chance we’ll see your fashion offshoot, Look, New York, reemerge again? We love Look, and we would love to bring it back. If the advertising market got really strong, we’d think about doing it. It would be a little bit weird because we’ve taken the Look format and essentially migrated it to our fashion issues. How closely do you read the comments? Not very closely; we just have so much content on the site. Sometimes I’ll read them when I’m curious about a story’s reception— not that the commenters are a perfect photograph of how it’s received in the world. How about the “Sex Diaries”? I used to read them a lot because the comments are really fun, but I haven’t recently. The most surprising thing to me is that the readers always want them to be more pornographic. Speaking of—can Eliot Spitzer make an effective comeback? He has been making a comeback, don’t you think? Would anyone vote for him if he ran for office again? I don’t know the answer to that. Though they probably would. It’s been a fairly successful comeback. Any thoughts on Bloomberg’s legacy? It’s going to be largely positive. The most interesting aspect of that era, when all is said and done, will be how he changed the physical city and revived certain neighborhoods. What do you think of the Murdoch scandal? Rupert Murdoch is a very powerful and shrewd man, he’s had a really tough year, and he seems to be surviving it. He certainly is great material for us! We’ve covered him over and over and over again—and it never ceases to be interesting. INSETS: COURTESY
It’s not polite to stare. But it’s perfectly understandable.
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Mag on top
A breath of fresh
TOP ROW: (left-right) Lisa Arbetter, Deputy Managing Editor; Leah Karp, Accessories Director; Cindy Weber-Cleary, Fashion Director; Ariel Foxman, Managing Editor; Wendy Wallace, Market Director; Amy Synnott-D’Annibale, Beauty Director & Editor InStyle Hair and Makeover; Hal Rubenstein, Editor-at-Large BOTTOM ROW: (left-right) Lisa Martin, Director of Photography; Nicole Chapoteau, Accessories Editor; Rina Stone, Creative Director; Brooke Mazurek, Assistant to the Managing Editor; Samira Nasr, Style Director; Dana Avidan-Cohn, Senior Market Editor
I don’t create covers to excite other editors. I have to make sure that 800,000 women passing a newsstand know immediately that a new InStyle has arrived.”—Ariel Foxman
FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
What’s it like to be at the top of the glossy heap for the third consecutive year in terms of ads and newsstand dominance? Just ask InStyle’s Ariel Foxman. The mag’s managing editor and his team have modified that full-on celeb lifestyle focus to delve deeper into immediate gratification. And man, does it feel good! BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV PhotOgraphy by Giorgio Niro
hy do readers flock to the mag? It’s prestigious to be in InStyle, certainly, and the title strikes a positive chord with readers. You don’t read InStyle because it makes you feel bad. This is a feelgood brand. And brands want to break their news in our magazine because our audience is willing to spend. How do you attract such an affluent reader? InStyle is aspirational but doable, so we excite and empower that reader to actually engage in style. And that requires some funds! We don’t show fashion as a treasure that we’re presenting to you on the page this month. How do you explain your domination in securing ad pages? The magazine environment is very noisy. But if you want to promote something, wouldn’t you want to put it in front of an audience that’s ready to engage? There isn’t one woman in our audience who isn’t at least willing to hear what you have to say— and she’s probably going to try it, too. The other appealing factor is that the magazine is a beautiful product. In and of itself, it should feel like a luxury purchase. So what’s the secret? InStyle aims to meet its reader exactly where she is and maintain that trusted relationship. Our audience is real. They’re actually there! They exist! That’s a good thing, and it’s not always a given. How do you maintain the reader’s trust? We don’t speak down to her, nor do we oversimplify or make something difficult too juvenile. And we don’t make anything too poppy or trashy. Because our reader has been with InStyle for so many years, she’s accustomed to the fact that we haven’t lead her astray. Your covers are meticulously consistent. I don’t create covers to excite other editors. I have to make sure that 800,000 women passing a newsstand know immediately that a new InStyle has arrived. So what do you do? We approach every cover as a meal, for which we only have five ingredients. Those elements are the banner, the cover lines, the celebrity, the fashion, and the accessories.
The InStyle logo, with all of its equity, trust, fun, and benevolent relationship with fashion and celebrity, is the entrée. We might dress up the plate and serve it a bit differently, but I’m not all of a sudden putting couscous on the plate if I’ve never done couscous! You can’t call it formulaic because it is what it is—that’s what the cover needs to look like. Do you ever worry about that cover “meal” getting stale? I don’t worry about it being boring—I worry that you won’t instantly recognize InStyle when you’re looking for it. We play with the elements, too: Are the shoes showing or not? Is the subject crouching or not crouching? Is it a beauty shot? What entices the reader to buy the magazine? If the reader is choosing to buy fewer magazines, or spending her time elsewhere, it helps if she loves our brand. We’ve grown with our reader. I’ve been here four years as the editor, but I had worked here before as a senior editor for many years, so I have a great institutional understanding of why the magazine does what it does and did what it did. From the moment I got here, I’ve spoken to the team about making sure we’re caught up with the reader—and often one step ahead of her. How has the magazine changed over the years? When InStyle launched, it was focused on celebrity lifestyle. It was about using celebrity to get in as an access point to everything. Now, we don’t necessarily need to peg what’s happening in fashion to celebrity. Why not? We’re using celebrity to illustrate things in fashion, but we don’t use it to validate. We have our own expertise. Six years ago, we’d tell you to try a blush because Julia Roberts wears it—that was the point of enthusiasm. Now, our beauty director, Amy Synnott-D’Annibaler, can say you have to try a certain blush because she’s tried 50 different blushes, and this is the best color for this season. And also, look how beautiful it looks on Julia Roberts! Are you moving in a direction of celebrifying your editors? We’re introducing our editors into our pages, but this has never been a brand that creates a cult of personality around any one editor, whether it’s myself or someone else. Where does the service element come into play? We know what our readers want, almost up to the point of over-delivering. Our September issue is 652 pages! It’s a good hour and a half flip through, at least. We don’t skimp on information or inspiration. I consider us successful if our reader does or shares something. Does your newsstand success give you a cushion editorially? I always know why we’re successful, but I don’t take any of it for granted. The first time we regained number one in advertising and were number one on the newsstand that year, I told our team there are shades of number one. We can be more number one! We cannot become complacent. Plus, anyone who’s not at number one is looking at number one and thinking what piece of it they can adopt and make their own. How do you deal with that? We have to defend it, while also continuing to grow. The temptation is to look back and see how people are copying or poaching from us. That’s about being flattered and thinking you just have to stay one step ahead: It’s a recipe for disaster! We don’t think of ourselves as winning more than once or twice a year, FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
when the numbers come out. Being number one is great, but if you start to disrespect the audience and your relationship with the reader, there are too many reasons for her to go away. It’s like a relationship: You have to keep working on it. What gets poached the most, though? You see a lot of magazines trying to change their spots. Some brands are trying to be something that they’re not, and instead are trying be a piece of InStyle: All of a sudden embracing approachability and accessibility or over-relying on celebrity as an access point. If that’s not inherent to the DNA of your brand, it rings inauthentic. Does that happen more in women’s general interest titles or fashion rags? I used to see it more in fashion titles, but now it’s happening in all magazines. I have a very myopic view; I can sit here and say that something just looks like an InStyle page. Even advertisers tell us that other magazines will come to them with their InStyle-esque pages. But those magazines will never have our authentic through-line: this is who we are, and who we’ve always been. Have you ever consider tweaking that tried-andtrue formula? There is a temptation, but we’ll quickly snap back. Even the slightest change feels like a big one for us because we know our approach so well. Sometimes we wonder if we want to be a little more cheeky. Or we’ll think, ‘Wouldn’t it be fun to take the piss out of something or someone?’ Yes, but not at InStyle. It could be fun to do fashion shoots where it’s completely atmospheric and you can’t see the clothes. But ultimately, that’s not what an InStyle fashion image is about. We don’t shoot models; we shoot celebrities. I’m sure there are times when the photographers we work with would have loved to shoot a model instead of a celebrity! What’s been trickier to integrate into the edit mix? Street style! How do we wrest the growing power of the blogs and street-style scene and incorporate it in the magazine and own it? The proliferation of street-style bloggers worried us: What was their role? What was their credibility? So what was your solution? We asked the reader how she was using the magazine, and we were inundated with pictures of people trying new outfits or testing out a new eyeshadow. Now, we run two pages in print called ‘Inspired by InStyle,’ which is our version of street style. Who is tackling digital and print with equal aplomb? Esquire is doing a great job with both. They’re on the vanguard of digital, but they also make sure the print experience is fun and lively with good delivery as well as content. Has your competitive space shifted at all? Since we’re number one in every metric, people get confused about who our competition is. From a circulation standpoint it’s one thing; from an advertising standpoint, it’s another. Over the past year, I’ve focused on competitors in other spaces; if you decide to pick up another magazine instead of InStyle, that’s one thing. If you decide to pick up your phone instead of InStyle, that’s something entirely different! So what’s your expansion plan? We’re figuring out how we can keep building on the InStyle name. I don’t think you’ll be seeing an InStyle slot machine anytime soon, though. When you have a beloved brand and the consumer wants more of it, you have to figure out how to do that right. i n s e t s : c o u r t e sy
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sassy Sandwiched between Giancarlo Giammetti and Valentino Garavani
Chatting with Marc Jacobs
Manhattan! Posing with the Kaiser
Catching up with DvF
Reveling with Giorgio Armani FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
Awaiting this week’s drop of Carine Roitfeld’s biannual mag, CR Fashion Book, has been an exercise in fervently curious patience for the style set. What’s happened since Roitfeld contentiously decamped from her EIC post at French Vogue? The grandma moniker, for starters, which might have something to do with Roitfeld’s newlychanneled “good girl” persona. Don’t worry, though: she’s still a bit crazy and, yes, irreverent. BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV PHOTOGRAPHY by Giorgio Niro
ow are you feeling about your new “baby”? The idea of the magazine actually coming out is very strange! For almost 15 years, I’ve been talking with Stephen Gan about doing a magazine together. When Stephen was at the printer seeing it actually happen two weeks ago, sending me pictures and everything, it was surreal. After 15 years of talking about this, it’s almost a joke! It’s happened very quickly. I’m excited, stressful, and very anxious. Do you think that’s a good mixture of feelings? And I’m already thinking about the next issue! You cannot stop. You were pegged for myriad gigs across the mag industry post-French Vogue… I was asked to do many projects, like to be a Barneys editor, special guest editor of V, special editor of Purple—working with all of my friends, basically. I don’t think that everyone who just leaves a magazine has so much support from all of those titles. Honestly, it’s quite rare, no? I wanted to keep it this way, so that when I see Stefano [Tonchi] or Olivier [Zahm] at the shows, I can have fun with them! I hope we can keep it this way; keep being friends. There is space for everyone. Besides CR Fashion Book, what other titles were you considering? It was very difficult to find a name that people could easily remember. I always sign everything with my initials, so it suddenly became evident. We added ‘Fashion Book’ so people would understand that the magazine is about fashion. That’s all. We had no other options. The same thing happened before with the title of my book, Irreverent. What was the most memorable moment of putting out the first issue? We were doing a shoot with a beautiful little girl, who was seven or eight-years-old, holding a baby. Suddenly the baby peed all over her. The little girl didn’t scream or drop the baby—she just had this expression of love on her face! What will CR offer the fashion industry? It’s about fashion beyond clothes; we’ve been saying that phrase a lot. It’s more of a dream magazine. I’m a dreamer! OK, yes, we work with the fashion industry, but it’s not really about, ‘I want to buy this, I want to buy that.’ CR is about being a collector: you don’t buy a new shirt each day or even month, so it’s the same for CR. There will be a lot of stories with no fashion credits: there’s nothing to buy, and those are my favorite stories! There are no credits on the cover, either. It’s very different from classic magazines. Does CR offer you the chance to do anything you never did at Vogue? What I didn’t do at French Vogue and always regretted was help young designers. Same for young makeup artists and hair stylists—I hope there’s more space for them in CR. How are you going to use that space? What’s the recipe for success? To make a magazine is to make the perfect dinner: you have amazing ‘guests,’ like Karl Lagerfeld, Bruce Weber, a dress by Mr. Armani, a Ralph Lauren bag. You want them all at your table, but you also want some trendy people, too, like Riccardo Tisci and Nicolas Ghesquière. All that talent needs to get mixed up for a beautiful dinner, and that’s the same approach we’re taking with CR Fashion Book. That would be a great dinner—and a very long evening! Since half of the 50,000 copies are going to be sold in Europe, and the other half will be sold in America and globally, do you value one audience
more than the other? I called Frida Giannini directly at No, no! The way we were working Gucci because one of my stories on the first issue was not felt like it was missing one of their especially American or European. dresses, and it was very important It’s open to everyone, and I don’t to me. I asked her, ‘Please, Frida, focus on one public. I’m not can you make this happen for choosing my audience or my me?’ And she answered me reader! I don’t know who’s finally directly! It’s a nicer, more personal going to buy and read it. conversation; you make a case for But your ideal audience? what you want. My English is not CR Fashion Book covers I don’t have one. You don’t choose your so good, as you can see. But I got public, and sometimes you’re very my Gucci dress! I got it! Thank surprised. When bloggers first saw you, Frida! images from the magazine, we didn’t What was it like pitching your know who would cover it—and we very own mag? were surprised! I’m sure when I meet It was exciting to talk about it; I my readers I’ll be happy because they like a challenge. must be nice people if they like fashion. How is CR a challenge? It will be people with a certain point It’s very me. I thought I was me of view and a sense of humor. I’m sure when I was in Paris at Vogue; it will be people that I’d like to have but I finally I realized I was in a dinner with; people I could have lots of golden cage. A beautiful golden conversations with. At least I cage with a beautiful crown. hope so! Ten years was a long time, so I What’s your ideal circulation? Do you decided I wanted to have more eventually want to have freedom. Now, in front of you mass appeal? with CR, is me. We’re always Carine, thinking about a uncensored! larger audience, but Yeah! In a good when it’s too big, and a bad way. it’s not good. I think With more you lose a bit of your freedom, you freedom. I would become who love to get bigger at you are. some point, though What happens I honestly don’t if CR Fashion Book fails? think it will become a mass magazine. Everyone works It’s too specific. so hard for it be It’s more like a successful, so coffee table book; if it’s not, that something you’ll will be a big want to collect. disappointment. What’s the learning But so many curve been like people say they with CR? want to do a When I became magazine and editor-in-chief of they never do it. French Vogue, I We’ve but we’ve only knew fashion. tried our best, I got to discover and now we’ll new things about see! jewelry, writing, Has your things like that. aesthetic And coming to CR, changed since Canoodling with I had never talked your days at Giovanna Battaglia to the advertisers; French Vogue? I’d never met them I didn’t change, before. but my tastes changed. At the same time that I was How is that possible, after a decade of editing leaving Vogue, I finished my book, Irreverent, about 30 French Vogue?! years of my work. When you go back 30 years, it’s a bit I don’t know! It’s very interesting for me. In France, like going to a shrink. It’s like, ‘What?! I did that...Oh, and everything is quite separate. Of course I knew some that? Why this? Why that?’ I don’t want to annoy myself of those people, but with CR I had to go and explain to or my readers, so it’s still me. But something is different them what this new project, my baby, was all about. in me. Maybe it’s because I’ve become a grandma, so What was that process like? things change a bit. I had to ask people directly for things. At Vogue, there What kind of grandma will you be to Romy? are many assistants and go-betweens. Here, with CR? I’ve only been a grandma for three months—I don’t No! It’s great, though, because it’s a very reactive and think she even recognizes me yet! I would love it if quick process. I went directly to people, and I’m sure my granddaughter loves me as much as my daughter they liked that too. loved my mom. The relationship my daughter had Who did you hit up for the first issue? with my mother was so specific. My mother passed
“I’m sure when I meet my readers I’ll be happy because they must be nice people if they like fashion.”
i n se t s : bfa n yc . c o m ( 4 ) ; pa t r i ckmcm u l l a n . c o m ( 2 )
away three years ago, and my daughter added her name, Nicole, to her own name [Julia] after she passed. Her grandma was so important to her. Julia told her everything, about boyfriends, hairdos, bad notes from school: everything I wouldn’t be happy with! My mother would say, ‘No problem, you’re the best.’ When Julia comes to Paris, the first place she goes is her grandmother’s grave. Can you imagine? That’s how much she loved her. And if Romy loves me as much, my God, I’ve done something great. That’s what I wish. Did you just cry? How have those grandma-induced personality changes impacted your work? Even though I just became a grandma, I’ve always been a mother. So when I did stories [at French Vogue] I didn’t want to show something I didn’t want my kids to see—anything that I didn’t want them to copy. My book, Irreverent, was dedicated to my husband because he quit smoking. And I’ve never used a single cigarette in my shoots since then. Sometimes it’s difficult because a cigarette is an easy way to make a picture! It’s too easy; we have to find something new to make a picture exciting. I’ve become a good girl! Still crazy, but good. Thirty years ago, it was cool to smoke. Now we’ve realized, about 10 years ago, that it’s not good to smoke. Do you smoke? Me? No. But I still love the smell of the smoke. What’s your favorite Carine Roitfeld profile? The very first one! It wasn’t in France because you’re never queen in your own country. It was published in The Face, in England, and the English are difficult with the French. I was featured as one of the top 10 most important fashion people or something. There was a beautiful black-and-white picture of me. And I still have the dress. Have any of your industry friends stiffened up since you decided to launch your own mag? No, I never think I’m in competition with anyone. The word ‘competitor’ is not on my mind. Never! And never with the models, either. Can you imagine feeling competitive with 18-year-old models? I’m the way I am. I’m not better, I’m just different. Touché! But what about other editors? Other people like to think this way. I hope other editors don’t feel like I’m taking their advertising.
With her children, Vladimir and Julia
I think we’re each going to be very different. Why was Town & Country a fitting place to break the story of CR Fashion Book? They wanted to do a story with me, and I didn’t want to do a big story—I don’t have time, and they wanted Julia [Restoin-Roitfeld] and the whole family with me. Julia’s baby had just arrived and I was working really hard. So I told them to use pieces of an interview I’d done for Harper’s Bazaar. I just saw it, actually—I did not know it would be a big piece! Why did you put your CR Fashion Book HQ at The Standard’s East Village outpost? Because it’s in New York! The city invited me. André [Balazs] was very nice to help us with this penthouse and the space on the 18th floor. That’s quite high! It’s a view with an office. For a French girl, that’s really beautiful. What was the CR-crafting ambiance like? The magazine felt like a factory: we had so many people passing through, and many of them had never done a photo shoot or styled anything before. And suddenly they became a photographer or stylist by working on this magazine. You’ve always been very loyal to specific photographers and models throughout your career: Have you been forced to change those ways, or has the shift been intentional? When I was at French Vogue, it took me years to build this family of photographers. Mario Testino has a contract with Condé Nast, and so does Mario Sorrenti, all of them. They’re all still my friends, even if we’re not working together. Finding new people was exciting, though. And when you find a new
And with her longtime partner, Christian Restoin
photographer, you have to find a whole new team! It definitely opened up my eyes to a new generation of makeup artists and hair stylists that I’d never met before. It’s been a great challenge and very positive. A breath of fresh air. How does the work ethic differ between making a mag in Paris versus New York? Even when you’re working at a French magazine, most of the shoots are in America. In New York, I’ve found an energy and enthusiasm that may be missing a bit right now in France. It’s too much about work, work, work in New York, and in France it’s not enough! How do you feel about your big debut party? I hope Stephen is going to choose my dress. This is a big problem, non? I need my ‘costume’ for the big opening! Please, Stephen, find one for me! According to Stephen, you donned your first-ever hoodie on set for one of CR’s shoots. Explain! What does it mean to dress more American? Sneakers, jeans, sweatshirt. I’ll keep my skirts and my silk shirts, but the hoodie was a present from Stephen, and it’s very good for traveling. I like it, I really do. Sneakers, though? I’m not really into that.
STEPHEN GAN WEIGHS IN!
The publishing powerhouse has added CR Fashion Book to his Fashion Media Group LLC’s stable of titles, which also includes Visionaire, V, and VMan. Gan on the roof of The Standard East Village
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How did this partnership happen? Carine is a born performer; magazines are her stage, we are the audience, and that’s that. For the past year, I’ve kept telling Carine that I wanted to help give her a stage through one of my magazines. How do you describe the mag? If we had done this a few years ago, I would’ve expected something slicker, glossier, darker, and more dramatic. It’s more personal and sort of romantic! The magazine is really heartfelt. It’s the softer side of Carine—an evolution. Are their any commonalities between CR Fashion Book, V, Visionaire, and VMan? We’re trying to make it very much its own experience. Some people might say we have similar tastes; in some respects, we do. But it’s like watching two completely
different movies coming out of the same studio. How big of an investment has CR been? I think Visionaire, V, and VMan are known for being pretty extravagant objects physically. CR had to arrive with fireworks. It wasn’t a launch that we wanted to scrimp on. We want the magazine to last a long time. How so? Like any magazine today, we had to be very responsible when it came to shooting. That said, there are 15 fashion editorials in one issue, shot all over the world. Carine had such childlike enthusiasm about everything, and that was really contagious. What could be more inspiring? Carine is the farthest thing from jaded. What’s your biggest concern as the drop date looms? I just want to do a good job and get it to all the newsstands on time. There are a lot of people out there waiting for copies. We have thousands of copies reserved by people who’ve preordered online. So now, we’re at that point where all of the muffins are baking in the oven! ga n : g i o rg i o n i r o ; bfa n yc . c o m ( 2 ) ; pa t r i ck mcm u l l a n . c o m
Win it like
WACKERMANN! Condé Nast’s resident turnaround artist Bill Wackermann has fully turned his attention on Glamour, as the mag’s executive VP and publishing director. But during his hopscotch through the glossy glut he’s learned a thing or two about success—and the gaffes that happen en route. This year, Wackermann penned a how-to guide on the topic, Flip The Script, and dished on his personal process of going far in the biz. Behold his key tenets for making it in life, publishing, and beyond! BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV Photography by Giorgio Niro
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Wackermann’s Belief System
he Power Of “So What?” THE 411: “It’s about reductive reasoning: you go to the worst case scenario and say, so what? Once you get past that hurdle, you start seeing alternative pathways. It can be a big project, or something as small as wanting to take off Friday and worrying that the boss will be mad.” So you can still succeed in publishing if you take off that Friday? “You need to check with me first. Are we closing the September issue? Then maybe not.” WORK IT LIKE WACKERMANN: “When taking on a new project, think about all of the things that could possibly go right, instead of wrong. For example, we saw those Tesco shoppable walls in Korean train stations and wanted to do something like that with Glamour in the U.S. The best-case scenario for us? Sell a similar concept to an advertiser! So last season of New York’s Fashion Week we did the first shoppable taxi, plus a freestanding wall with C.O. Bigelow directly across from The Standard. It was a great success!” “The Boss Hates Me” And Other Acts Of Self-Sabotage THE 411: “Instead of making excuses for ourselves, let’s look at our own behavior. It’s easier to say that the boss hates you than to ask yourself if you’re working hard enough, getting that proposal in on time, or getting too defensive with constructive criticism. We’re all guilty of that: the constructive part we don’t hear, and the criticism part we do.” WORK IT LIKE WACKERMANN: “I learned this the hard way earlier in my career. If someone was challenging my brand, I thought they were challenging me. I took
things too personally. I was young when I started out. I was only 31-years-old when I became the publisher of Details! There was a lot of responsibility, plus I was learning how to manage, inspire, and mobilize a team of people. Humbling yourself and checking your ego is so important. Too much ego is not a good thing, but just enough to motivate and keep you competitive is what you want. Power is getting people to do things that are very difficult for them, and it doesn’t come from where you’d expect it to. People who get into new jobs where they have to now manage people think they’re just immediately the boss. You’re the boss because people want to follow you, so you have to get inside their heads and find out what they care about.” The Right Thing And The Hard Thing THE 411: “You need to understand risk management. Anyone who says they have no doubts or fears is lying or being foolish! Those are good things: you get the best results if you go home at night re-thinking if you’ve done things right.” WORK IT LIKE WACKERMANN: “I went to a breakfast with a beauty industry advertiser recently. The industry as a whole is up 18 to 20 percent. This particular brand is up six percent, which is not terrible, but they’re not fully benefiting from where the market is, and the company’s CMO said he didn’t know why the brand wasn’t doing well.” Did you know the answer? “I told him I didn’t know what his brand meant. To use an old Chinese proverb, the man who chases two rabbits gets none. Who are you? You have to stand for something in the consumer’s mind. If you want to be known for skincare, organic, and also color, what does that
Bill’s POWER Phrases! 1. “Why do you feel that way?” “I just wait and get quiet; it makes the person feel like it’s an open conversation space. It allows me to get more information, while not judging them in the process.” 2. “If it was the perfect world and you knocked something off your checklist, what would it be?” “It helps people prioritize and make things happen.” 3. “Write down something that you want to accomplish in the next year that would make you feel like, ‘Holy crap, I did it!,’ what would it be?” “I do this internally to motivate my team; it allows you to free think. People don’t feel like they have the permission to dream sometimes!” 4. “It’s whatever-whatever.” “We now speak in code here; we’ll say that and know what the other person means.” 5. “I’m sitting on the ledge. Should I jump?” “If you’re talking on the phone and trying to get information, this helps. If they tell you to jump, they’ve just told you what they couldn’t tell you.”
amount to?” What’s the point of being so frank? “Publishers used to be thought of as salesmen, but today the job also involves being a consultant to our advertisers. We have a bird’s eye view of the industry! But it’s a challenge to be so honest. When it’s a company that advertises with us, I’m putting ad dollars in jeopardy by being a straight-shooter. People know that about me, and hopefully take it as valuable insight since I’ve been in the industry for a while and have turned around a few brands within Condé Nast.” Strategic Anger THE 411: “Thoughtful manipulation is an offensive move in any negotiation. In any business, people think they are ‘friends’ with people they work with. But are you truly, deeply ‘friends’ with anyone that you know professionally? If a ‘friend’ calls you with tickets to a concert, the next day or week, they will call and ask for something. They have the power. We were taught to be polite.
Women in this industry were particularly told to not be rude and to be accommodating. But this is a business! You’re not just a group of friends hanging out.” WORK IT LIKE WACKERMANN: “In this industry, people will ‘give’ you an ad spread; well, no! You gave them an audience of 12 million people! It’s all business. Sometimes, people don’t win games from a good defense: they need to be on the offense. Kindness and weakness are not the same thing.” Everything’s A Negotiation THE 411: “You have two ears and one mouth, so you should listen twice as much as you talk. If you listen, people will tell you who they are, what they need, and how they want to be sold. Most people are just waiting to speak, so let a person talk until you have a chance to make your point.” WORK IT LIKE WACKERMANN: “A couple years ago at Details, the brand was 10-years-old and under Dan Peres’ leadership. They had innovated all sorts of things, from the white covers to bringing about a mainstream metrosexual guy. The magazine was telling guys that it was OK to wear certain clothes and that grooming products weren’t so out of left field. Then, we got into asking mode. We went to the readers to get a sense of what they wanted. That’s how The Body section came about!”
AND! Is He The Oprah Of 4 Times Square? Have you ever considered doing Condé caf motivational speeches? My hands are full, and my eyes are on the prize at Glamour. But during the summers I speak to all of the interns at Condé Nast. If the interns only paid attention to one thing, what do you hope it is? That anything is possible! I absolutely believe it. The fact that I wrote a book? I’m as humbled and blown away as anyone, are you joking?! Also, if it’s not authentic and real, don’t do it. If your parents want you to be a lawyer and you want to be a stylist, go be a stylist. And don’t be in ad sales if you don’t like asking those tough questions! Have you ever told someone they should
consider an alternate career path? Having to let someone go is probably the worst aspect of being in management. If a salesperson says something hard to talk about ‘didn’t come up’ at a sales lunch, they can still be a great person, but they might not be the right fit for the job! What are your secrets to being a great salesperson? I think of every lunch as a performance. It doesn’t matter if you had a bad day or if you don’t like the menu. Get a slice of pizza on your way home! What’s next? I would love to have my own show on Glamour TV. As long as it’s a Glamourrelated product, I’m there and excited.
ow did Tatler get such a great sense of humor? I profoundly believe that Tatler needs to be funny, or else what is the point? I don’t care if our writers are tackling eye shadow or bereavement— there can always be a funny angle. It’s our job to entertain. This is a glossy magazine! Did that levity exist before your arrival? It is in the brand’s DNA! Tatler was started 300 years ago as a very frisky gossip rag in the coffeehouses of London. It never purported to be terribly serious. So who’s your reader? Tatler has the richest reader of any magazine in the
“It’s our job to entertain. This is a glossy magazine!” United Kingdom. Therefore, we write about and feature unimaginable privilege and luxury. In this day and age you need to cover these things with such a lightness of touch, enthusiasm, funniness, and gratitude. Or else, it’s just too Marie Antoinette-ish for words. I sometimes feel that way about glossy magazines. Dresses that cost thousands of pounds? You’ve got to show those in a way that acknowledges to the reader that it’s beyond the dreams of most people that have ever lived on this planet. But by golly, isn’t it beautiful and inspiring! Is Tatler’s sense of humor particularly British? I don’t think so. There’s an international group of people who share many things—vacation destinations, the brand of shoes they buy, the type of cars they drive, and a sense of humor. The magazine should be profoundly British, though. Americans don’t need me to tell them what’s happening in New York. How closely do you cover British fashion? British designers are tremendously important to us if they’re producing clothes our readers would like to wear. We don’t slavishly promote designers just because they happen to be based in England. We do
e l a T r e l t Ta
e, ersion of colleg v ’s n o rd a e R e was Kate wo years later, u T g . o 9 1 V e n g a a t ic a er Am ored assistant gig sc tor at Tatler, and in 2010, n io sh fa a to thanks pected verve shion direc ex fa n u ed d m n a a n it s w a at n, this It Brit w masthead. Th e th f o p y, dry Reardo r to w y e p p th ti to e s th k t n d. tha she landed a y onto its hea awing? It’s all et ff ci u g so s h er ig d h f ea o r orld that has sually fusty w u e th ed n r tu ILYASHOV who has LEXANDRA BY A
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support them when at all possible, but I’m just far more interested in providing a service to our readers than to designers. Does fashion take itself too seriously? Many women’s magazines are profoundly uptight, and they could all do with taking themselves a little bit less seriously at times! By the time I finish reading many fashion magazines, I feel like sh*t about myself. They leave me thinking I’ll never be rich, thin, or cool enough. For me to feel like that, and I’m a Condé Nast editor? I mean, sheesh! It’s important for fashion titles to inform, enthuse, and invigorate, but without being so snooty. I really want Tatler to be the most fun girl at the party, not the rich cow you want to slap. Are you a fan of the front row grind each season? It’s very easy to b*tch and moan about going to the shows, but then you catch yourself. It very much sounds like saying, ‘Ouch, my diamond shoes are hurting.’ We are so fortunate to be paid to fly around the world, seeing things of extraordinary beauty. When you catch yourself whining or being a little bit tired, put your big-girl pants on and deal with it! How do you dress? I’m very, very tidy—obsessively so! I feel there is nothing better in the whole world than being organized. Today I’m wearing a dress and a pair of shoes, and that’s it. With underwear, obviously. Where else does your tidiness manifest? I’m obsessively tidy in the office. We operate a cleardesk policy at Tatler. Really? I ask everyone to clear their desks at the end of the day. They probably think I’m insane, but I don’t care! Do you go around and check? Yes, yes! If I’m walking around and somebody’s desk is particularly messy, I’ll mention casually that perhaps they would like to get rid of that extensive Evian bottle collection. And what’s the rationale? This isn’t play school. Just because we happen to work at a magazine, and in fashion, doesn’t mean that we’re a bunch of morons. We’re adult women producing something that makes a great deal of money for a very important company. The office is part of the brand. Just as we wouldn’t send out a magazine with incorrect spellings, people should see a slick, glamorous, professional office when they come to meetings at Tatler. As for the slicker side of your pages, does
high-society coverage ever feel frivolous? Of course party pictures are frivolous. However, they are endlessly fascinating. And if you love Tatler, you love that about it. Why do your readers care about the doings of a very elite group? Shenanigans are always riveting! To anyone. There’s a natural human urge to gossip, to look into other people’s lives, and to gain insights. Tatler provides a window into a certain type of world. What is Tatler’s role as a chronicler? If you look at past issues, the magazine extraordinarily and brilliantly captures the zeitgeist of that world, at any given moment. I’m keeping my fingers very, very tightly crossed that we’re managing to do that right now, too. How important is newsstand success to you? We care enormously about how the newsstand is doing—and we’re endlessly riveted by the figures! The newsstand is incredibly important, compared to its role in the U.S.; we sell more issues that way than through subscriptions. I would be a total moron if I didn’t think continuously about the newsstand. There’s no point at being a brilliant genius if nobody is listening to you!
What’s been your bestselling cover as EIC? At the moment, it was July 2011, with an actress named Romola Garai. But we also expect our September 2012 cover with Cindy Crawford to do amazingly well. But listen, if any editor tells you they really know why a cover did well, they’d just repeat it every single month for the entirety of their career. Has your readership diversified? Of course it’s important for my readership to expand while I’m here, otherwise I’m going to get sacked! [laughs] On the other hand, I realize that all editors get sacked at some point; I will eventually be led gently by the hand, sobbing, from the building. How was your first industry gig at American Vogue? It was very, very Devil Wears Prada. I was the 19-yearold, fat, badly-dressed one, who just didn’t get it. They would take bets—in front of me!—about how long I was going to last at Vogue. It was my first job, I hadn’t even gone to college, and I was possibly the worst assistant in the history of the universe. How would you define worst? We would go on fittings four hours outside New York City, and I’d forget the shoes. I’m not exaggerating. Now I get to be Meryl Streep, and it’s so much more fun. Were you overwhelmed or intimidated upon landing at Vogue? No, I was too stupid to be overwhelmed. I hadn’t the faintest idea what I was doing, and therefore I was very jolly about the whole thing! Then you hopped back across the pond to Tatler. Yes, I became fashion director, at the age of 21. That’s the power of American Vogue: it was like having a giant gold star on my resume. How was that stint as contributing editor at Vanity Fair? It was a privilege. Working there is like working for NASA—it just doesn’t get better in the magazine world. It’s over now, sadly, because it became mutually exclusive with my job here. But even though I’m O.C.D. when it comes to tidiness and minimalism, the only decoration in my office is a card that Graydon [Carter] sent me, along with flowers, when I got the gig here. The card says, ‘Dear Kate, you’ve got the big job now. Just don’t fuck it up.’
rty, a p e h t t a l r i g fun t s o m e h t e b o t .” Tatler p t a l n s a o t w t y l n l a a e w r u I “ yo not the rich cow
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All About Steve
So how’s the mag doing? We’ve been up every issue since I arrived in 2010. During my first full year, in 2011, our advertising improved 45 percent. This year, we’ll grow 20 percent on top of that. Richard is a brilliant editor with tremendous vision; we have an amazing working relationship that lets me go out there and articulate that vision. How are you doing compared to your competitors? We’ve outperformed not only our competitive set, but I think we’ve outperformed the entire magazine industry. People have been more cautious with their ad dollars, so they want more bang for their buck—and Departures is all about luxury you can believe in. We are the only ones who can prove that we’re true luxury, and that our readers do actually spend on luxury goods. How has that competitive set evolved? This year, it seemed like a lot of magazines jumped back into the luxury fray. You have Bloomberg Pursuits, Best Life, DuJour. They’re starting or reviving products because they think there’s an advertising angle, not a consumer need. If they thought there was a consumer need, those magazines should not have gone away in the first place. Luxury is not a demographic; it’s a mindset. Most magazines have to do the high-low level of the game; we don’t have to play in that world. Other luxury magazines are about ‘my car is bigger than yours,’ and we’re really about a sophisticated lifestyle and the social cues that go along with that. Courting and scoring solely highbrow advertisers for What kind of AmEx do you use? I was a Platinum card member before I started the job, and that actually helped me a luxury mag exclusive to American Express’ most because I was already a reader! affluent cardholders: Welcome to the charmed reality Do you have the easiest job in publishing? of Steve DeLuca, publisher of Departures. I don’t think it’s the easiest, but I’d say it’s the most fun! I love helping our clients solve their business needs; we’re a great magazine, but more importantly, Does he have the easiest job in publishing? we’re a marketing solution. BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV What makes Departures’ business model so successful? PORTRAIT BY GIORGIO NIRO We have controlled circulation. We have the business model of publishing’s future: there is no waste with our magazine. If the hat brings us to the Core Club? Platinum and Centurion cards are like clubs, Departures is their I’m here three to five times a week. I do newsletter. People do pay for us, in fact—we’re part of a broader lunches and breakfasts for business, and benefits package. then on the personal side, I come for the How expensive is that package? cultural series. Departures and the Core Club have a You have to pay annual fees of $450 if you’re a Platinum card very close working relationship; if the magazine were member, and $2,500 if you’re a Centurion card member. It’s to start its own club, this would be it! Believe it or not, I not just about affluence; it’s also a lifestyle, and those cards met Richard [David Story] here. are like lifestyle ‘screens.’ These people are very successful, Do tell. well-educated, well-traveled, with an interest in fashion. It was before I knew the Departures job was available. Do you really have to spend $250k I was at an event celebrating a photography book by annually to score Centurion status? Graham Nash of Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. I said I can neither confirm nor deny that, ‘Hi,’ to Ed Kelly, the CEO of American Express, and he but the most important thing about an introduced me to Richard—I talked to him about the April American Express cardholder is that 2010 Fashion Issue cover, which had an illustration by Jean they’re able to pay off the balance in 30 Philippe Delhomme back when he did all the ads for Barneys in days. This is not a credit card; this is a Deluca, left, with the nineties. Richard just looked at me and said, ‘Who are you, charge card. If someone is spending money Richard David Story and how do you know who that is?’ I got a call the next day to in a store or hotel, they can actually afford come interview to be publisher. to do it—and they’re probably going to come What’s it like to work with Richard? back and do it again soon. Richard is my favorite editor in the whole wide world, but a How much do you get to see of that data? lot of people say that. He’s respected and loved. We get a lot from the top line, although we Do you travel together? obviously don’t see any personal data. On the advertising side, That’s probably one of the best aspects of my job. Most recently, we have the ability to see the type of hotels our readers stay we went to Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Qatar together. We were like at—so we only talk to five-star properties and above. two strangers together in a strange land. We went to a desert How has your fashion business evolved? safari camp and rode camels. It’s one of our strongest categories, and one of our biggest Same camel? growth areas over the last two years. In 2011, we were up 64 No, no, different camels! percent in fashion; this year, we’re going to be up another 30 What else goes down on your trips? percent in the category. When we travel, we challenge each other about who gets to the How much info. can you share with advertisers? gym first each morning. Apparently one of the best ways to get A fair amount. We can sit down with them and tell them what over jetlag is to run, actually! This started on one of our first trips portion of Centurion and Platinum card members shop in together, to Shanghai—I woke up at three or four in the morning, their stores and how much they spend. It’s pretty high-level luckily the gym was open 24 hours. I left a note at the front desk information, and very confidential. that said ‘Richard Story, you’re late.’ It’s become a running joke! Any chance we’ll see subscriptions become available? Who usually hits the gym first? No, and that’s what makes it special to the cardholders. Shortly I have to admit, he usually wins. But not by much! He always has after I became publisher, someone at a cocktail party dragged his music on at extremely high decibels. me into a corner, pulled out his American Express card, and How does that competitive spirit translate to your dynamic said, ‘I’m a Platinum member, I get Departures, and I love at Departures? it! See that guy over there? He’s my neighbor and he doesn’t get it.’ He didn’t just Just the way we needle each other about the gym, we’re that way in business, in mean get the magazine—he meant get the grander scheme of things. It’s the same a friendly manner. He’ll ask me, ‘How come we don’t have that advertiser?’ and reason a brand like Hermès doesn’t do a lower-priced line: you’re either a part of the sometimes I’ll needle him about a story idea. experience, or you’re not.
Complicated Angling, no doubt, to recapture glories past, Jason Binn has cooked up a new mag concept with DuJour. It’s a somewhat befuddling threeway partnership, so let’s see if we got it straight. Gilt delivers flash-sale shoppers, Hudson News hawks 15,000 newsstand copies nationwide (plus, brings some investment $), and Binn contributes the trumpeted hype that brought him success at Niche Media and his ad sales prowess. If this isn’t complicated enough, he also has two editors-in-chief, Keith Pollock and Nicole Vecchiarelli. And they’re adorable! BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV PORTRAIT by Giorgio Niro FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
o what is DuJour’s editorial vision? Keith Pollock: We wanted to present luxury in a fresh way. It can have personality, feel fresh, and be bold without feeling so familiar and typecast. Nicole Vecchiarelli: The magazine’s association with wealth shouldn’t be at all stuffy or dry; it also speaks to a younger consumer. Who are you trying to take business from? KP: No one! DuJour came about because there’s an opportunity for the luxury market, and growth in that area. But when we were going into the market we were definitely mindful of titles like WSJ., T, and Departures. Are you sharing any staffers with Gilt? KP: We’re working with them, but not formally. They’re so successful in the digital space, so we’re able to leverage their best practices into developing our Website and doing newsletters. NV: It sometimes feels like a mentor relationship: Gilt has an incredible track record and a strong marketing department. KP: The other mentor relationship is with Hudson News; they’ve been really involved in guiding us in terms of the newsstand. How many copies are you distributing on the newsstand? NV: 15,000, throughout the U.S.—and within cities that the magazine is being mailed to, Hudson News locations will carry it. What’s up with the five criteria needed to get the mag sent to a reader for free? KP: It was in place before we got here; Jason spent the last two years developing that business model. Every publisher aspires to reach those people! We also have access to over three million Gilt subscribers, who receive the same issue in digital format. We had to speak to that super luxe .001 percent for print, but also to a broader Gilt audience. But given that Gilt has a flash sale shopper, how likely are they to buy the expensive things you feature at regular price? NV: I don’t think it’s been that challenging to merge those two audiences together; that’s the brilliance of Jason’s plan! We’re reaching the luxury market, but also a massive, digitally engaged audience. The advertisers are excited about making contact with this Gilt subscriber, because that’s a powerful force. They love to shop and to be online. But how is that upper, upper echelon print readership going to be enforced? KP: Jason worked with an agency to develop that list; it’s super complicated, but readily available to a lot of print magazines. It was extremely expensive to compile. How are you divvying up the content? KP: It’s been completely collaborative. I think at first we expected to divide and conquer, but we were both very involved in the design of the magazine, the Website, the stories, even the logo! I can’t think of a situation where we didn’t agree. NV: We’re sort of merging into the same person! If either of us had been in it alone, it truly would have been terrifying. How’d the first issue come together? NV: Keith and I started exactly two months before completing the first issue. When we left InStyle and Elle, respectively, there was no staff, no logo, no sense of process; it was overwhelming, but exciting. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience to start from nothing. KP: We had amazing jobs at amazing magazines, but there are muscles we hadn’t exercised in a while. So what are each of your respective strengths? KP: Besides being a great editor, one of Nicole’s greatest strengths is that she’s really good at working with people. I don’t always possess that same strength. NV: I feel really lucky that Keith had hired and managed entire staffs; that was never my goal at any magazine. He knows how to build a good team and negotiate the work flow. Did you guys know each other before becoming co-EICs? KP: I knew her by reputation, and we shared a lot of mutual friends. When Jason brought the idea up of working with Nicole, the first thing I did was email a very
difficult publicist and ask if she knew her. The publicist wrote back within two minutes, in all caps, “She’s awesome.” NV: It was like Jason set us up on a blind date, we met, then we had a baby the next day. Keith and I were both firm that we wanted to get to know each other— without Jason involved—before we made the decision to do DuJour. What was the courting process? NV: We probably met four or five times and had several phone calls. I walked out of my first meeting with Jason and thought, “I can’t believe I just had a three-hour meeting about this magazine and still have no idea what it’s about.” Keith, you took a slew of Elle.com staffers with you to DuJour—how was the transition? KP: We had to staff up rather quickly, but we like to joke that it’s been a Brady Bunch situation: Nicole brought some people, I brought some people, and we’ve watched the “kids” grow up. NV: The people here from InStyle weren’t still at the magazine when I left, but former InStyle staffers are now at DuJour as our executive editor, associate editor, and cities editor. KP: I know I pissed a few people off at first—but Nicole actually brought more people over! NV: My moves weren’t quite as obvious, though. Have you gotten any feedback from Robbie Myers? KP: Robbie and I were really close—I just saw her the other day for coffee. She’s always been a huge supporter of mine. Leaving was difficult because of that close relationship, but I’ve been giving her updates almost every week! Robbie also talked to us about the pressures of being fundamentally responsible for something. NV: She gave us basic advice, big picture stuff. About budgets, for example—that it was not going to be as easy as we thought. What question have you fielded exhaustively? KP: “Is this a magazine about food?” DuJour has an epicurean connotation, so we had fun with that. We asked all of the contributors for their favorite kind of soup, for example. When I told my family that I was launching a magazine called DuJour, the reaction was, “Oh, you’re not doing fashion anymore?” NV: The other most common question was, “Will I get the magazine? Do I meet all the filters?” Why did you choose Christy Turlington for your debut cover? KP: She represents luxury. But she has her own charities, and she’s a mother—she’s more than just a fashion figure. NV: Christy is iconic, and we needed that. How did you cook up DuJour’s aesthetic? KP: We spent the first month looking at hundreds of old magazines. Everything from Spanish Harper’s Bazaar to Bon Appétit. We also looked at old, international editions of Vogue, and we worked with a design consultant to develop the magazine’s thoughtful look. NV: Yet a lot of our design decisions are very modern and bold. There’s a lot of highlighter yellow, for example; that actually came from The Daily! How do you foresee DuJour expanding? KP: Because a large percentage of our readers are city-oriented, I could see us doing city guides. Jason’s background in events is huge, so maybe we’ll produce some of those, as well. I could also see us publishing a book in a few years of all the beautiful photography we’ll have accumulated. What’s the weirdest thing that happened when you were putting the first issue together? KP: Where to begin? NV: The last two weeks of production felt like one long day; we left at 2 or 3 in the morning and returned at 9 a.m. KP: The day that we closed the issue, on a Sunday morning at 5 a.m., the sun was out, and I felt like I’d been partying all night, not working for weeks! There was nothing DuJour about the way we were eating and sleeping. c o u rtes y d u j o u r
Biting the Bullett
Feeling nostalgique for Sassy and The Face? Indulge your high-low cravings with a quarterly dose of downtown cult glossy, Bullett. Its high-fashion take on street style, with a generous heaping of celebrity jus, is the vision of sceenwriter turned EIC Idil Tabanca. BY MARIA DENARDO PORTRAIT BY GIORGIO NIRO
hat’s the overall message of Bullett? We’re trying to start a new cultural conversation! We’re removing the comfort zone and challenging our audience by coming up with new ways to see things. The only thing I stay away from is politics. So is Bullett the next Nylon? I appreciate Nylon, but we’re more upscale, from the writing to the subjects we feature. We have a more grown-up, global audience. In design, we take a subtle, artful approach. We like to look like a coffee table book. Who’s the competition? No one really does high fashion with an edge in America, except for maybe V or W. The magazines we really look up to are Love, Dazed & Confused, and i-D, but we offer a more academic approach. We use a lot of established writers, and really value our text. How hard is it to get advertising? Very hard. The advertisers who are really smart are leaning toward digital, which is why we’re working on an iPad app and a tablet with exclusive material that will allow the magazine to go monthly. It took a year for advertisers to realize we were serious. How do you survive? Bullett Creative Agency (BCA) really funds us. We book jobs, shoot editorials and videos, and sell packages for other brands, which allows us to put out this beautiful book that doesn’t have 100 pages of ads. Which brands are currently running ads? Brands like Louis Vuitton, Levi’s, John Varvatos, and Topman. I want all the LVMH brands. What’s the best business model for indie mags? Find a niche and develop a targeted distribution to get the right eyeballs on the magazine. We’re in locations like great spas and hotels, along with selling in shops like Colette and Opening Ceremony. Who are your key staff members? Sah D’Simone is our creative director, and James Orlando is our art director. The three of us co-own the magazine and sit on the board. We stole two people from BlackBook, our editorial director Nick Haramis, and Ben Barna, our online features director. Juliet Thompson is our content director and Melissa Rubini is our new fashion director. We’re a close-knit family. The oldest editor on staff is in her thirties. The rest of us have a Lower East Side kind of life. The majority is gay and lives in Opening Ceremony. They like to not like things, but it’s endearing. There’s a lot of hair flipping. Do you only put celebs on the cover? Our editorial director is obsessed with actors, and they do have more of a personality. Someone like Daniel FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
Radcliffe, who was on our “obsessed” issue cover, has a massive fan following. We’re looking into musicians and non-actors but haven’t found the right person. What have you learned via trial and error? Everything from signing the wrong company to build our website to missing deadlines. We used to go over budget a lot, too, and I’d end up cutting 10 stories. We’re all still learning and getting better with every issue. How important are your social media platforms? We don’t have a social media person, like most companies. It’s more organic here. Everyone in the office has the password, and when they see something interesting, they put it up. And you’re getting into e-tailing? It’s an over-saturated market, but we’re differentiating ourselves by starting minimal and including items you can’t buy everywhere, like our custom merchandise with Sexy-Sweaters. Will you ever switch to an onlineonly format? It’s hard to predict since the transition is happening right now. I don’t think print will ever completely die. In the future, I think magazines will be more like your business card to complement and direct your readers online. Would you ever work at a mainstream title? I’ll probably return to screenwriting someday, but I’d do it out of curiosity. These all-nighters are drying out my soul. Three days ago, we were closing and my staff was sleeping on the couches, and I was running around screaming, ‘I can’t take this anymore!’ Then we started playing bumper cars with the office chairs. What’s the greatest sin in publishing? Destroying trees. I’ve been a vegetarian for 15 years, and I’m very nature-friendly. It makes me feel guilty every day, but I don’t feel half as guilty as Vogue should feel. What’s the solution? It’s complicated. I call our distributor every day to learn about the process. I’m trying to reinvent the wheel, which is probably not a good idea, but the system is twisted and inefficient. It has to change!
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Where do the most discussed people in America turn when they have news of lovers, marriages, babies, weight loss, drug abuse, and scandals of all shapes and sizes? People, of course. Managing editor Larry Hackett explains how the number one weekly at the newsstand stays firmly on top. BY EDDIE ROCHE PORTRAIT BY GIORGIO NIRO
ow’d you get here? I had a very orthodox background. I went to Boston University, where I joined the school newspaper, and I graduated in 1983 into a terrible economy like we have now. I moved home to Northern New Jersey and worked at a small newspaper there called The Daily Record, and went onto The Star Ledger before moving to the New York Daily News in the late eighties. It was the perfect mix of sass, hard news coverage, and great features, and it just captured and curated the day in a fantastic way. What was your beat at the Daily News? I began as a reporter in the lifestyle section and then went on to work on the city desk and the national desk. I covered the Oscars, Waco, and the Woody Allen mayhem with Soon-Yi [Previn] and Mia [Farrow]. I never just wanted to cover cops or city hall; I liked general assignments. I ended up running the features department there, but after eight years or so, it struck me that most of the action and opportunity was in magazines, not newspapers. People had that mix of celebrity and news that appealed to me. It just so happened that the managing editor, Carol Wallace, had been an alum of the Daily News, and her mentor was Gil Spencer, who had hired me. She took a shine to me back in 1998, and I’ve been here ever since, moving up the ranks. How has People evolved? It’s more than a magazine—it’s a brand that exists on many platforms, and the challenge is how to best serve our readers in each. It’s an optimistic and fair magazine—not gushy or too awestruck, in the words of its founder. At the same time, it is genuinely admiring of people and their accomplishments, and it pulls for people when they are down or in trouble. Why has People remained the preeminent celebrity authority? Because we treat celebrities fairly, and the size of our audience makes us important. Our team in Los Angeles, which works closely with the celebrities, is comprised of good people. They have a reputation for being fair, straightforward, and honest. As anybody in this business knows, life is long, and you’re going to deal with these publicists and managers again and again. We’re not going to burn our relationships for a good cover this week. We play a much longer game. Do all celebs participate in your stories? We prefer it when they do, but some circumstances call for a write-around. Certain stories may actually be better if the celebrity doesn’t participate, because we may get a more even-handed explanation of the story. Our reporting
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is thorough and aggressive enough so that we can a little reluctant to go back there. But we’ll see if it often get the story without talking to the celebrity. takes off. Do you ever feel guilty about publishing When the pictures of Prince Harry’s infamous nearly paparazzi photos? nude pool game were published, did you instantly I know a real invasion of privacy when I see it. When know you had your next cover? it’s a celebrity with a child on a school playground, and No. The pace of news is so fast these days that my first they clearly didn’t know they were being photographed, thought was that it was great, and the second was that I the bar goes up. It can be cleared, but at a certain point, didn’t know if it would have enough legs to last a week. you wonder if it’s really worth it. Is this telling a good It did, though! story or is it just invasive to a degree that neither I nor What pop culture websites do you read? our readers feel comfortable with? There are plenty of I read our site, UsMagazine.com, and The Daily Mail is a pictures we run where the celebrity might not be thrilled lot of fun. I look at TMZ to see what they’re doing, but about being photographed, but because they were in a in terms of what’s going on—and I know this sounds public place and they weren’t terribly invasive, we put self- serving—our guys cover it the best and the most them in. comprehensively. What’s the criteria? People has a solid reputation! If I’m not comfortable with how a photograph was I hear that over and over again, but there are still made, I won’t run it. Some celebrities walk around moments where we cross swords with another website. Hollywood with their children and clearly don’t mind being When Michael Jackson died, for example, TMZ was really photographed—Gwen Stefani, for example. There are super-competitive, and they were getting scoops and others who do, and we take that into account. We’ve been beating People on the news. As an ex-newspaper guy, asked not to run certain photos, and often times, we don’t. that’s maddening. But there are months when a site like Are you scared of any Hollywood publicists? that isn’t quite at the center of breaking news. We’re out No, I’m respectful of them. I have a good relationship there every day. with the ones who have been doing this a long time, and How did you land the scoop on the TomKat split? we can have very candid conversations. As the world Again, relationships. At a certain point, both camps knew splinters more digitally and culturally, I do worry that the that news was going to get out. Who did they trust? I’ll machinery that creates stars is in danger of falling apart leave it at that. to some degree. And I don’t mean this Was it Katie Holmes’ publicist? in a pejorative way towards publicists, “This is an optimistic I’m not getting into details. but in part it is because of the decline it a strong seller? and fair magazine-- Was of symbiosis between a publicist and Huge! We had a great, robust not too gushy or a magazine. There are also fewer and summer. Three Tom and Katie covers, fewer stars out there. There is no new awestruck, in the Robert Pattinson, Jennifer Aniston’s Julia Roberts. Who’s the next Tom Cruise? Gabby Douglas and the words of its founder.” engagement, There are always new candidates, but Olympics…a lot of big news, and a lot of that galaxy of new movie stars isn’t out good news. It speaks to People’s place in there right now, and I’m sure that Hollywood is acutely American culture: when big events happen, people want aware of that, too. to share them with our magazine. Do you blame it on the reality TV invasion? Do you ever tire of the subjects you cover? I like covering reality stars. Despite the boo-hooing, people If there’s a good story and we can tell it well, I enjoy it. like to read their stories. There is some narrative going on I remember going into old sewage treatment plants, and in their life—they’re getting married or divorced or have if the guy was excited about his job, I got enthusiastic 19 babies. It’s not my job to comment on the downfall of about it, too. civilization—we’re just a window into the culture. What’s it like to interview POTUS? Have you been following Honey Boo Boo? When we interviewed Obama, I think he was a little We dedicated four pages to her family this week. surprised that we were talking about things like Yemen. Could she make the of cover People someday? I assume he thought we’d ask what’s on his iPod—which Maybe! We did do a cover story on Toddlers and we would!—but it’s mistaken to think that’s all we care Tiaras, but it was not one of our best sellers, so I’m about. Everything is fair game.
Turning the tables...
h LAR CHATTER wit The last present I gave... “This is embarrassing, but I think I gave my son cash for his birthday.” The last vice I indulged in… “A glass of wine last night.” I last forgot my wallet... “When I was fishing in Montana. I left it in the car!” The last sunburn I got… “Was at the Jersey Shore in Spring Lake early this July. I did not apply my SPF properly!”
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Long-form journalism’s boy wonder Hugo Lindgren is all grown up, and his redesigned The New York Times Magazine is earning (mostly) favorable feedback. Have you renewed your Sunday subscription yet? BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV portrait by Giorgio Niro
hat’s your idea of cool? on proving things. Putting the magazine together is a Oh, God! We don’t try to make the magazine cool. process, and it’s pretty fun, most of the time. One of the true marks of death is to try to be cool at The How’s the response been to The One Page Magazine? Times. It’s also hard to be funny. You’ll find both things in Oh, just overwhelmingly, exuberantly positive! our pages, but we get punished by the readership. I’m just kidding. I have no idea. So where do you get your ideas? Do you care about the criticism? From being careful and prodigious consumers of the I am very, very interested in what people think about news, and also by following our own curiosities as editors. the magazine, but I’m not necessarily interested in what And we get a lot of really good ideas from the writers! people sending nasty emails think about it. That’s a Unlike some of our competitors, we have a greater relatively small part of the population. We’ve made a appetite for psychological and emotional kinds of stories, lot of changes, but we’ve also fundamentally kept a lot and we can deliver that dimension more effectively. of aspects of the magazine intact. We didn’t rip out the Long-form journalism isn’t dead, but is it evolving? features and start doing cartoons! People come to magazines like ours, and our competitors’, What kind of feedback are you craving? for serious engagement. It’s important not to cater to Did we advance the conversation? Did we screw up attention-grabbing demands. It’s about going with the something fundamental? The people that really know best writers you can find, and we have the luxury at The something about a subject you cover is a critical audience Times magazine of not having to cover every subject. I’m really interested in. Unless you superbly piss people Is it difficult to succeed as a long-form journalist off—or blow them away—you don’t normally find out today? what readers think. We don’t have the budget or time to Yes, but it always was! It’s a high-risk career choice, do surveys and stuff. there’s no doubt about that. But the number What kind of boss are you? of people who want to write long-form “Did we advance It doesn’t feel like a very hierarchical narrative journalism has always been a lot place, but then again, I wouldn’t be the the conversation? best person to ask about that. greater than the number of people who end up being successful at it. That’s not a How’s your rapport with Jill Abramson? Did we screw reason not to do something. Pretty good, I think! Jill’s an easy person up something Has anything happened to you that you to get along with. We had a meeting with should really submit to the Ethicist? her and John Geddes recently; Jill was fundamental? That, I will not answer! very clear about what she liked about The people that Do you have any regrets? Mag-related, the magazine, and what she wanted to see more of. When we walked out of that of course. really know My one tactical mistake was deciding to meeting, we didn’t feel like we got the something about ultimate pat on the back, but we also do a big redesign. Not that I’m displeased with any aspect of the magazine, because got support and a clear sense of what a subject you I’m not at all! But it generated unnecessary Jill thought we could do better. All of her cover is a unrest from readers. If we’d woven those input and guidance comes with a clear changes in over time, it would’ve felt much critical audience sense that she trusts our judgment. more organic—instead of being like, “Bam! What’s been your biggest get? I’m really Here’s the new magazine! Get used to it!” The Horace Mann story [“Prep-School How is the magazine different from your Predators: The Horace Mann School’s interested in.” first stint there? Secret History of Sexual Abuse,” June 6, I’ve worked my way around, but I truly 2012]. First of all, the writer, Amos Kamil, learned how to be a journalist during my first time at was not a professional journalist prior to reporting that story; also, he was writing about things that happened The Times. Were there any challenges incited by your return to over 20 years ago—which presented a lot of challenges. What’s a recent read you wish you’d published? The Times? No! It’s been amazing. The Times used to be a really A story on Cuba in The New Yorker by David Grann. It was formal place, and that was starting to change during my somewhat out of left field, but whenever I see his byline, first tenure there. I’ve known a bunch of the magazine’s I know I’m going to be thrilled! I hope we have writers like top editors really well, and this group works really hard that, too.
Is The New Yorker’s golden age over? Definitely not! Week in and week out, that magazine is extremely good. I think any magazine editor in New York, or anywhere else, would be delighted to publish virtually anything they print. What’s your favorite magazine? I’m going to leave out some totally obvious ones, but the one I look forward to getting the most is a British music magazine, Mojo. It’s so passionate, knowledgeable, and rich. It’s also brilliantly organized, in terms of departments that do very specific things, and the design is wonderful. If I have a couple hours to spend doing something, I’d rather read Mojo than watch any television show or see any movie. It’s a great investment of time. Where do you nab your copies? This guy who runs a newsstand in the West Village on Hudson Street offered to call me every time a new copy arrives, and he does! But I wish I got a big packet of European magazines in the mail every week. Sometimes I buy one of those $14 copies of British Esquire, although it doesn’t have a lot to do with what we do. Any other secret sources? There are a lot of good German magazines, but I don’t read German. And sometimes, I look for ideas at CoverJunkie.com. Do you plan to ramp up the fashion coverage? That’s an open discussion for now; we definitely haven’t done much yet. Our Stella McCartney cover was really our only big fashion story so far. I don’t have conviction to do too much, since Sally has T, but I’d like to do more. [Ed. note: This interview took place before Sally Singer’s exit. When asked for a comment on her departure, Lindgren could only say, “I wish her well.”] What’s your office look? I dress like a semi-responsible adult, usually blue jeans with a collared shirt. But you’re wearing a t-shirt. I was in a collared shirt for the shoot, but I had to change out of it because I hadn’t laundered it yet. Too starchy! Fashion aside, are journalists getting sloppier? I don’t think it’s any worse than in the past. To be a bigtime writer right now, you’ve got to wear a lot of different hats and do a lot of different things—and that provides an environment in which it’s more possible to screw up. Most of the time, I just feel bad for these people, but it’s not a career-ender for everybody. You seem like a happy guy. For the first time in my life, I’m working on the assumption that the future will take care of itself. If we can produce a good magazine, that’s the best argument we can create for why magazines still matter. And they do!
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Make what you will of BuzzFeed’s cute animal pics and the kitschy stamp-of-approval “reaction buttons,” which let readers “LOL” and “WTF” their way through the site’s share-happy content. But recently, the site’s name has become a truly fitting moniker for its business, thanks to ex-Politico Ben Smith taking the reins as editor-in-chief with Rolling Stone, Gawker, and Observer alum Doree Shafrir as exec editor. BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV PhotOgraphy by Giorgio Niro
SITE Specific GOING VIRAL!
With DOREE SHAFRIR, BUZZFEED’S EXECUTIVE EDITOR
What’s your elevator pitch for BuzzFeed? We collect the most viral, awesome stuff on the Internet. We’re focused on the social web and what people want to share, whether it’s a funny list or a story about transgender teenagers. How do you know if something is viral worthy? The stuff that does the best on the social web hits a chord emotionally. It doesn’t have to be sentimental or sappy, but it has to feel new—and to make the sharer look good and be proud of finding it. What hits that magical formula? Our biggest post in the past couple months was “21 Photos That Will Restore Your Faith in Humanity.” That got eight million views! On Facebook, when I see friends from different parts of my life—and my mom—all sharing the same thing, I know it’s a huge hit. How is this type of storytelling different from what you did at Rolling Stone? Telling a story through gifs was not something that was in my wheelhouse even a year ago! Did you have any reservations about heading to BuzzFeed? I met with Ben [Smith] in December, and there was a very senior position open for someone to launch new verticals. It sounded exciting, experimental, and like the next logical step in my career. I loved my job at Rolling Stone; I wasn’t looking to leave, and I felt like I hadn’t done everything I wanted to there. But Ben is really good at selling people. I couldn’t turn this down. What state was the site in when you arrived? I came on in February, and only the politics vertical existed, though Ben was planning out the tech vertical. I was taking a lot of meetings; I was scoping out tons of lifestyle/women’s interests editors for Amy Odell’s job. Sports originally wasn’t going to launch until May, but then we found Kevin Lincoln from Business Insider—I followed him on Twitter and I always liked his writing, and he seemed interested in sports though he didn’t always write about sports. FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
How did you cobble together the team? I tried to cast a pretty wide net. Twitter has been a really important place for referrals. Are you checking out the site’s stats often? I monitor it consistently. Editors logged into BuzzFeed can mouse over posts to see instantly how many views they have. If I think a post should be doing better, I’ll tweak the headline, dek, or thumbnail. Things we think will be great don’t always take off; we just have to move on. Do you celebrate when something does particularly well on the site? There’s a sales team gong. We’ve discussed having a “viral gong,” but it’d be annoying; it would be hit too many times! Right after I started, BuzzFeed’s president, Jon Steinberg, promised that if we hit more than 20 million unique hits before December, he’d get a mini-horse for the office. So we had a pony visit us for an hour, and people took pictures with it. It’s my Twitter avatar! Have you ever had to fire someone for not netting enough traffic? No, we don’t have quotas or specific traffic rules. Knock on wood, that it’s not a conversation I’ve had to have! We’re really invested in our staff; if someone’s struggling we’re not going to just cast them out. We hired them for a reason. What’s that formula for hiring? It’s partially instinct. I like everyone I work with. That’s hardly the case anywhere! And in our job descriptions, we specify “no haters.” We don’t want negativity. Did your stint at Gawker prep you, preemptively, for BuzzFeed? One of the most important things that I learned at Gawker was to not take things personally that people say about you on the Internet. What do you think of Gawker nowadays? It’s totally different than when I was there; now, it’s general interest. It’s much bigger now; they get a lot more traffic than we did. We focused on New York and the media back then.
What was it like working with Nick Denton? Nick had really good instincts and knew what worked. Having the confidence to stand behind your decisions was definitely something I learned from him. Are any particular sites or publications major feeders for BuzzFeed? People have come through a range of places; we’ve started a fellowship program because there weren’t feeders for the type of people we need. So now we’re going to homegrow them! What should a print magazine be cribbing from a site like BuzzFeed? Magazines need to understand that a lot of their content is very shareable. There’s been a real renaissance in long-reads that magazines could take advantage of. Those titles are missing out on the conversations around amazing stories, which are unfortunately behind a paywall. How did the Shift vertical come to fruition? The Cut had a skeptical view of the fashion industry—here, we’re a lot more enthusiastic. We’re also not focused on high fashion, so we do a lot of DIY and wearable trends. It’s our first Fashion Week, so we’ll have front row celeb photos, but not what’s coming down the runway, unless it’s something really crazy! What’s the dress code like in the office? It’s close to anything goes! This is a pretty typical outfit—a semi-nice shirt, jeans, and wedge sandals. I don’t wear cut-offs or T shirts in the office. I try to keep it semi-professional, but it’s not business casual. If you hadn’t come to BuzzFeed, where might you have headed? I probably would have stayed at Rolling Stone for a while; maybe I would’ve tried to write more. I wouldn’t have gone to print only, but I would have considered working for the site of another magazine. Which print mag badly needs some online and social web TLC? Harper’s barely has a website; almost everything is behind a paywall. From what I understand, they are slowly moving out of that. It would be an interesting challenge because they’re so serious. They might not know exactly what to do with me! What do you religiously read in print still? The New Yorker, New York, and occasionally GQ. I also read Runner’s World because I’m training for the marathon. And I subscribe to Garden and Gun, Texas Monthly, and Wired. Are you into the “reaction buttons”? I kind of like them. It injects a degree of levity. There have been a couple of instances where we’ve been like, “Oh, is it appropriate to have a ‘WTF’ badge on this post?” What are your tips for being an awesome tweeter? You need to be engaged, have personality without oversharing, and do more than post links to your work. Get involved in conversations. What’s the biggest misconception about BuzzFeed? That a lot of what we do is really easy! There’s a tendency to look down on list posts as things that get thrown together. They take a lot of time and conceptualization. It’s not a piece of investigative journalism, but it’s its own thing that we do very well—and not everyone can. Is there anything you’re always tickled by? When I need relief from the day, I go to the Animals vertical to look at cute pictures of dogs with adopted lions cubs. What kind of feedback have you gotten from industry peers? All I can say is that people are reading it more—which is the best endorsement!
BUZZFEED HEADLINES OR HOAXES? Can you discern the faux from the true buzz generators? 1. Can Watching “Buffy” Make Men Less Sexist? 2. Alicia Silverstone Asks Putin To Provide Pussy Riot With Vegan Meals 3. Lord Of The Rings Etsy Shop By A Ten-Year-Old Boy 4. 25 Animals That Are Too Fat To Function 5. Scientists Find Cause Of Rosacea, And It’s Terrifying 6. Cow Photobombs Horse 7. 20 Hilariously Wrong Knock-Offs Of Famous Brand Names 8. Honey Boo Boo’s Sister Had A Baby With Three Thumbs, Feeds It Mountain Dew 9. The Hottest Guy On Grindr At The Republican National Convention 10. 18 Chicken Fingers That Look Like Other Things 11. Can You Make It Through This Post Without Crying? 12. Amanda Seyfried: Poop Crusader 13. 12 Hilarious Reviews Of A Pen Just For Women THEY’RE ALL LEGIT! Stranger than fiction as some may seem, all of these headlines are recent and 100 percent real.
COMMANDING GUIDELINES! With BEN SMITH, EIC How did BuzzFeed offer greener pastures from your previous gig at Politico? I’d been thinking that news needed to be reorganized around the social Web. Anybody who’d been blogging had felt that tangibly for a few years. Twitter sucked the life out of blogs and centralized the conversation. So why BuzzFeed? You hear a lot of jargon about the social Web—it can sound a little abstract. Many media people get a lot of their news from Twitter, and they’re very satisfied to see their work bouncing around there. But you can’t trick people into sharing stuff, so the SEO factory model doesn’t really work on social. There’s no trick! People will only share stuff that’s good and compelling. How does the chain of command work around here? Doree, our managing editor, Scott [Lamb], and I effectively run it as a trifecta. Doree’s been building these verticals at an astonishing rate! We hired a food editor today [Bon Appétit alum Emily Fleischaker], someone Doree found. And Doree really gets primary responsibility for Shift. So what do you do? I edit politics and stuff; also, breaking news coverage. Scott oversees the core viral content—he understands how it works better than anybody else! What’s the most annoying question about BuzzFeed that you field regularly? “Why don’t you think of “front page news at BuzzFeed?” It’s all these various things floating around the web; front page news can be very different things to different people. How does it compare to what you were doing at Politico? More than five years ago, when I started at Politico, people liked the idea of an online news source, but it was confusing. It was a spinoff of The Washington Post; a very traditional place, though it happened to be online. Now, people are so accustomed to the idea that the whole media space is blowing up, we’ve had very little trouble getting credible sources to take us seriously at BuzzFeed. Breaking news has credibility.
How’s the BuzzFeed office culture? It’s definitely the happiest place I’ve ever worked! There’s an underlying view that the kind of stuff people share is positive. We’ve avoided illinformed negativity. What else makes BuzzFeed a really happy place to be? Maybe we haven’t evolved into the toxic internal politics that you usually get in an organization. We haven’t been around long enough
for that! Everybody who’s here is really excited to be here. Are any print publications doing a great job with their digital reiterations? I actually don’t distinguish print and online publications in my head, but The Daily Mail does have a great website. They have this classic British middlebrow tabloid style. What do you think the BuzzFeed brand will be in five years? I wish I could tell you what it’s going to look like in the next six months with a little more clarity. We’ve been growing faster than we anticipated—which is hugely attributed to Doree. Do you get a chance to write often? Multiple times a day; I’m sort of a blogger by nature. Getting Doree writing is a big project, though, because she has so much on her plate. But she’s such a great writer! What’s the best tidbit about BuzzFeed’s work environment? There are long email chains that are conducted entirely by gifs!
Meet Michael Hainey, Jim Nelson’s long-time number deux at GQ who’s been topping the masthead since the Art Cooper days. When he’s not agonizing over every single word in each issue, Hainey paints on the weekends (sellable stuff, even!), dabbles in poetry, and has been waking up at the crack of dawn for a decade to pen a memoir, out next year. Intrigued? BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV PORTRAIT BY GIORGIO NIRO
What’s your niche as deputy editor? It’s an involved answer. Well, what are your strengths as an editor? I can be a very good big-picture editor. I see the whole issue—and I mean the monthly issue, not psychological issues. I’m also a strong line editor. It really depends on the project. Do you prefer writing or editing? I like both. I believe you are a better editor if you also write. Everyone on the team of editors that Jim has assembled is a talented, skillful, distinct-voiced writer in their own right. It’s an awe-inspiring and an energizing thing to be a part of. What has changed most during your 13-year tenure? How much time do you have? I was hired by Art Cooper, and Jim [Nelson] assumed the job of editor-inchief nine years ago. Jim brought tremendous energy, intelligence, and dynamism to GQ—and that’s how the magazine has evolved since. How so? Jim and I used to concern ourselves with 12 issues a year, period. Now, GQ is a monthly, weekly, daily, and even of-the-minute worldwide entity with diverse means of projecting its voice and power, but there needs to be vigilance in terms of the best and most appropriate ways to deploy that voice. FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
What’s your painting style? God, I don’t know! I use oil. I’ve been painting for more than 10 years. It’s just something I’ve wanted to do, and it brings me great joy. I sell some of my paintings to friends, and some to strangers. According to Google, you’re also a poet. I have indeed written poetry, and it’s been published in some journals, but the poetry has evolved into the memoir I’m completing. I started working on it 10 years ago, and I recently sold it to Nan Graham at Scribner. It’s coming out in February. Any teasers? My father was a newspaperman in Chicago, and he died when he was very young. It’s about my research into his life and the mystery surrounding his death. I hate the word memoir, as does my editor—we call it more of a “son’s story.” How does the process of memoir writing differ
from GQ? Obviously, GQ is my job, so I’m here during the day. I have to carve out time in the mornings to write, from 4:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. Who do you hope reads this book? Lots of people. I think it will resonate and inspire. Your colleagues, too? Does that scare you at all? Well, it’s too late now, isn’t it! What’s your 10-year plan? I haven’t thought that far out. Who’s your style muse? My wife, Brooke. I dress for her. She always gives me a thumbs-up or a thumbs-down. Besides your wife, who is your dream girl? [Starts scribbling and fiddling with his pen] I think we’ve had them all on the cover so far. What do you geek out on, fashion-wise? I don’t really geek out. I N S E T : P A T R I C K M C M U L L A N . C O M ; co v ers courtes y
Magic Man Tom Florio has shifted gears from bolstering the bottom line of tony Condé glossies to revamping trade shows as fashion group CEO at Advanstar. Managing the constellation of MAGIC shows today while strategizing the digital add-ons of tomorrow, Florio proves he’s still in vogue. BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV PORTRAIT BY GIORGIO NIRO
hat’s up with the new gig? Advanstar Fashion Group is a rather large company that has magazines in the B2B space, as well as a number of trade shows. The fashion trade shows are the largest part of our business—namely MAGIC in August and February. It used to be just a trade show, and now it’s the largest contemporary market week in the world, involving eight different shows. Sounds busy! To put it into perspective, Paris, New York, and Milan show around 200 brands total over that amount of time. At MAGIC, you can see 5,000 brands—with approximately 70,000 attendees per show. Around $600 million dollars worth of business will be written during that week at the show, and probably twice that after the show. It has to happen in Vegas because you can’t get 70,000 people to fit into one show anywhere else! So what lured you to this new-ish gig? It’s a very big opportunity. Before, fashion was
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relatively elitist and about exclusivity. Today, you’ve got mega-luxury brands and retailers doing deals with mass-appeal brands: fashion’s going to the 99 percent. Runway shows are exciting as big cultural events setting trends, but the business of fashion is being done in a different environment. While at Condé, could you have ever have predicted a career move like Advanstar? No! I was president at The New Yorker, then I was at
Front-row at Carolina Herrera next to Wintour in 2009
GQ— and when I was at GQ, they asked me to go to Vanity Fair. When I was asked to go to Vogue, I didn’t want to, but Anna [Wintour] and I had a talk and I was convinced to go. Did I see myself going outside the communications field? Maybe not. Right now, this whole democratization of fashion feels very much like 2004 when I started seeing the digital thing happen to print magazines. Do you miss anything about being at Condé? I wouldn’t say I miss it. What I gave up in terms of glamour, I’m making up in interest and innovation. Condé Nast is a spectacular place to work, and Vogue is, of course, the most authoritative consumer fashion brand. But I have an opportunity to reinvent something that’s very consistent with the way the industry is going. That’s exciting. Do you enjoy being a transient Angeleno? I really like it! I have a great place at the beach. I surfed the other day after work in Malibu. It’s not Paris, but it’s definitely fun. I N S E T : PA T R I C K M C M U L L A N . C O M
SOM Well, what have we here? Despite all the praise lavished upon the industry’s youngest guns, Som’s arty offering reminded the front row why he’s been so successful for so long. No trickery or frippery— just smart, tailored clothes for women with personality.
Lean and mean! A wise collab with La Perla gave Jason just the dash of sauce he needed to make his polished clothes feel sexy as hell. His always-impressive technique is especially appreciated in the laser-cut leather and appliqués.
FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
j a s o n w u : v i ta l a g i b a l o w ; peter som: firstview
MARCH 19-23 / 2013 Accepting Applications
through October 10
emerging designer competition: east
Z O e L L e R
2012 EDC: E Finalist Vartika Vikram
P H O T O G R A P H
A PATHWAY TO NEW YORK
P A U L
Drink, Revive, Enjoy! What’s the fashion set sipping to get through the week? Vita Coco! Thousands of cases are flooding Fashion Week from backstage at the shows to late night parties, this is the chic hydration— and beautification— alternative to bottled water. It���s 100% natural with no preservatives or additives plus it’s both fat and cholesterol free. Why down bottle after bottle of water when you can get a boost of potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium and calcium all in this one small package?
GALLAGHER Newbie to watch! After just two years in business, this RISD grad’s always-evolving POV is worth our attentions. Sex-centric and unabashedly body-baring, expect it to hit Carine’s mag immédiatement.
And this season it’s all about Coco Cafe, the new musthave hangover helper after any overly spirited evening out. It’s the perfect pickme-up from Vita Coco thanks to a mixture of hydrating coconut water, a shot of organic Fair Trade espresso (that’s 120mgs of caffeine!) and low-fat milk. Plus, it’s Kosher, Gluten-Free, and lowcal. Don’t be surprised if you see your favorite front row fixtures toting a bottle or two in their bags. Plus, Vita Coco trucks are pulling up to Fashion Week’s hautest events to dole out free samples so keep an eye out fashionistas. Bottoms up! clocks in at half the Fun Itsugar and fat of most coffee Fact: beverages.
Love fest! Robert Tagliapietra and Jeffrey Costello’s amourinspired collection underscores what happens when a beautiful woman and a stunning dress collide. As always, the color story was spot-on, but ladies will really be romanced by the magical, mystical prints.
OBANDO Artistic prints beautiful enough to frame. Obando has always catered to the girl who’s not afraid to dress up, and he’s hit the sweet spot with these ladylike—but distinctly undusty—dresses for day and evening.
firstview (15) FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
DFR Ad_with bleed_31 August 2012.indd 1
9/4/12 3:29 PM
OF THE WIND
These Chicagoans first attempt at a New York runway? A success by all accounts. Despite their penchant for quirk, these clothes are easily street-sound. And dare we say it—a bit Miuccia-esque?
Au Naturel Nails ana-maria gheorghiu for essie
GRAHAM Too bad he’s so hell-bent on remaining underthe-radar! Graham’s designs may be weighty in concept, but they’re executed with a supremely light hand. A European sensibility, c’est sûr. FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
creatures: firstview; courtesy gary graham; courtesy essie
A TASTE OF ST. TROPEZ IN THE MEATPACKING DISTRICT.
Open for Dinner Service Tuesday-Saturday with late night DJ’s Thursday-Saturday Open Wednesday night for “Nuit Blanche” our weekly burlesque dinner party, choreographed by Dances of Vice Open Saturday & Sunday for our famous champagne Beau Brunch
The Daily Style Sessions! September 9th—11th, 2012
11:00AM - 6:00PM
The Empire Hotel The Rooftop 44 West 63rd Street
WEEK September 2012
Interactive Brand Experiences | Catwalk Concierge by Modelinia #Influence101 blogger tutorials by Socialyte.Co | VIP Salon & Spa Services Signature Cocktails & Refreshments | Live DJ Sets!
RSVP Required Alexandra@lfbmediagroup.com Tweet Us @DailyFrontRow | #StyleSessions | Follow us at Facebook.com/DailyFrontRow
21 & Over | Invite Is Non-Transferable
Ask a Newsstand Guy! Who is the most feared man in publishing these days? Manish Golchha! The knowledgeable and opinionated manager of Magazine Café on 37th Street not only tells it like it is, he’s also your best resource for the early scoop on your September success stories (and failures). BY EDDIE ROCHE PHOTOGRAPHY BY GIORGIO NIRO
FA S H I O N W E E K D A I L Y. C O M
How have sales been this month? This month is our best September since we opened five years ago. I read articles that sales were down 10 percent, but it hasn’t affected us, because we’re in the fashion district. Our clients will buy fashion magazines instead of food. Who is selling well right now? InStyle is really hot! Vogue is usually the biggest seller, but a lot of people pick it up and say they don’t want to buy it because it’s all ads. Is it too heavy? Nah, the size is good. It’s just not the easiest thing to drag to the beach. Thoughts on Lady Gaga on the cover? She was everywhere last year; this year, she’s been a little less everywhere. But Vogue could have done better. They should have had a supermodel and saved Gaga for the October issue. How many copies of Vogue do you sell each month? Normally we sell about 150, but this month we’ll sell 225.
By the way, how’s Soap Opera Digest selling these days? We only move about five copies a month. I don’t see the point of that magazine. You can get all that information online! Let’s talk about W! With Salma Hayek! That’s actually Penelope Cruz. My bad! It’s very appealing. There is a magnetic quality to it that pulls you in. It has sold pretty well. The rest of the year is standard sales for W. It doesn’t fluctuate that much. Some of the other magazines sell differently every month because of the covers, but W is more about the brand name, so its readers are always going to pick it up. The photo shoots are always very beautiful. They get the creative juices flowing. The larger format makes it more interesting than everything else. Are you on Stefano Tonchi’s payroll? What could they do to boost sales? It skimps on volume. It needs more pages. What do you think about the V Magazine cover with Nicole Kidman? It’s awesome! It’s every guy’s fantasy. She’s looking super sexy, and sex sells. They shouldn’t have made it the travel issue, though; they should have made it the sex issue. Hello! Conflicting information. Mario Testino shot the cover. He shoots a lot of the Vogue Italia and Vogue Paris covers as well. You know your magazines! Well, he’s probably the number one fashion photographer in the world. British Vogue featured the model, Karlie Kloss! She’s been on a lot of covers this month… [studies photo] She’s not really ringing a bell. She’s pretty, in an old-fashioned way, like on Mad Men. Have you heard of CR Fashion Book? We’re going to carry it! A lot of people have been calling to ask if it has come in. I have no idea what it is. How is Miley faring for Marie Claire? Miley’s Miley! The cover is really nice; she’s looking pretty. The $3.99 price is very reasonable. Putting down four bucks for something that’s going to entertain you for two hours is a good deal. Is Miley getting married too young? No comment. Do you like Vanity Fair’s cover of Kate Middleton? I don’t care for this picture. It’s so average. I could have taken that shot! It’s not creative, but it still is a very solid magazine and it’s selling very well. Harper’s Bazaar with Gwen Stefani: Discuss! I’ve loved her since the time she came to India to perform in concert. One of my friends actually stayed in her room—she had an extra room and gave it to him. Lucky! You had a big crush on Kristen Stewart last season— How are you dealing with news of her cheating? I’m a little mad at her. Robert Pattinson has always been a nice guy. You never hear of him messing around or doing crazy stuff like that! I’ll give it six months before she gets a big cover again. Are the magazines you sell aspirational or realistic for your customers? Vogue and Marie Claire are aspirational in rural centers, but in urban centers, that’s what girls actually go out and buy, epecially in New York. People are fashion crazy here. What else is doing well? Playboy. They always use real models!
BUSINESS & FASHION TOGETHER IS NEVER TOO
MATCHY MATCHY www.limcollege.edu/img Business and fashion come together in a unique way at LIM College. For nearly 75 years, we’ve been educating fashion’s business leaders. With hundreds of the industry’s top companies as partners, and with expert faculty, a rigorous curriculum, and our prime location in the world’s fashion capital, this is a hands-on, professional education — WHERE BUSINESS MEETS FASHION® — unlike anywhere else. www.limcollege.edu • 800.677.1322 • 12 E. 53rd St. New York, NY
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