I love magazines, especially those of the glossy kind. It isn't as if my daily dose of the papers isn't important, because it is, but there's nothing quite like not worrying about the fate of the world for ten minutes (global warming, stupid American President, stupid wars concocted out of sexed-up intelligence dossiers, bring on the crap) and just looking at stuff instead. Like photographs. And the occasional debate over volume v. body-con - which is the cooler trend? (thinner people and boys might disagree with me, but I say volume deserves to win)- and that stuff isn't very important anyway, because all that really mattered to me about Vogue UK was the photographs inside- specifically, the editorials, of which I am bound to like at least one per issue (even though I can sometimes see a bit of a trend where the models get put in shoes, trousers/skirts, shirts and other accessories all by the same designer). I also appreciate the fact that flipping through a copy in the shop won't put me at risk of dislocating my wrist and elbow joints (major drawback to American Vogue, aside from being over-Photoshopped and too glossy).And even if I don't pay all that much attention to the articles, they're still ok and it's nice to be able to read them. Besides, it isn't as if Vogue wasn't capable of putting what looks to me like amazing stuff (and I don't mean the clothes) on its covers- just look at a few:July 1928
And it isn't as if their ability to get out an amazing-looking cover image ended at 1950- the picture immediately below this text was taken in 2005 and served as the July cover. It looked so good, I bought the magazine- not something I usually do.
Which is why I'm left wondering...what's happening to them? Practically all the covers that have been out so far in 2007 are a bit blah-looking, and really not that big a deal at all- Kate Winslet looked all right on the January cover though not great, but the rest were really, there's no other way to put it, lacklustre- this despite all of them featuring famous models who've done some really great work for other magazines and previously in Vogue itself. Jessica Stam looked fairly dead on the February cover, Daria looks singularly bored on the March one (pictured right at the bottom- it doesn't help that her dress doesn't even show up properly against that pastel background), Kate Moss- whatever anyone might say about her- just about managed to save the April cover from being as dull as the rest (shiny short black dress and cool pose might've had something to do with it), and now comes the latest- the May cover, featuring Natalia Vodianova and the chap from Razorlight. Three words: it looks awful. There is nothing about that cover which would induce a first-time reader to pick it off the stand, and the sad part is it isn't as if they can't do it. Put out a good cover image, I mean. And maybe this is just me being disgruntled, but if Vogue is supposed to be a fashion magazine, who forgot to put the shirt on Johnny Borrell?**
**Most galling of all is the thought that one of the following three people is probably behind the styling of that cover- Lucinda Chambers, Kate Phelan or Miranda Almond (Robson?). And not to be shallow or anything, but Johnny Borrell? I didn't quite believe the Queens about his being coverboy at first, but couldn't Vogue find anyone better? Even if the Gallaghers are too cranky and the Arctic Monkeys don't do fashion shoots?