10.18.2012

style inspiration: Vanessa Friedman


"To me, clothes are about identity — sociopolitical identity — 
and fashion gives you a chance every six months to rethink what that means."

i think Vanessa Friedman is one of the most erudite fashion journalists in the industry. her incisive FT blog that covers luxury, fashion, and culture is a weekly must-read for me, and i love her confident, sophisticated personal style.


New York Magazine just did a q+a with Ms. Friedman, and i found some of her responses particularly thought-provoking:
How do you approach fashion, from the position of the Financial Times?
"I mean, everybody has to wear clothes. Everyone gets up in the morning and they make a decision about what they’re going to put on their bodies. Therefore, it is something that we should look at and think about. Increasingly as information gets conveyed visually, whether it’s by a picture on a phone or online, the choices you make about what you put on are more important. So our attitude is, 'Let’s look at this, let’s think about why we’re making these choices, and what they mean, and what they can say to everybody else, and talk about it.'"
How do you feel about street-style photographers?
"I don’t like them. It’s a strange, parallel reality that’s grown up around the shows, which is really a time when most people are there just to work, and not because they’re out there having a great time. It’s quite strange when you get up after four hours of sleep, and you have bags under your eyes, and to get out of a car and to have all these people be like, Aaah! trying to take your picture. I dress the way I dress every day, and I feel bad because with the Japanese photographers, once they know you, they take your picture all the time. And I had the same black, Alexander McQueen handbag the entire fashion season — it didn't change — but everyday they took a picture of the same handbag and they would say, 'What is it?' And I’m like, 'You know what it is. You saw it yesterday. You saw it two weeks ago.' I feel like I’m disappointing them all the time."
i love that she unapologetically wears the same favorite pieces over and over again, and dresses for herself. i also think her remark about clothes and sociopolitical identity is right on.

what do you think?

read the rest of the interview here. 

14 comments:

  1. I read that interview yesterday and really loved it ! I liked what she said and I finished the interview thinking I should really follow her blog. I'm glad you're sharing this on yours.

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  2. Great interview & love her personal style.

    http://herribbonsandherbows.blogspot.co.uk/

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  3. Wonderful interview. I love her straightforward, intelligent voice. Thank you for pointing me to her.

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    1. you're welcome! someone once said to me that she didn't think one could converse intelligently about fashion. journalists like Vanessa Friedman completely prove otherwise.

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  4. I always felt the same way about fashion week too, that people are there to work. It's their job, and it's already infecting pitti... somethings should be kept a little "sacred" LOL! (of course the sartorialist is the exception, i love his fashion week and pitti pictures)

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  5. Almost needless to say, I agree:).

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  6. I feel bad being a regular reader of FT and not even knowing they had a financial blog! Thanks for posting her Q&A here; I love how nonchalant she is about the fashion industry. She doesn't make it bigger than it is and tells it like it is. That you've got to admire in an industry veteran!

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    1. exactly - i love her matter of fact take on things. so refreshing.

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  7. Vanessa Friedman is always on my must read list. I read this interview a few days ago and totally agree about style and sociopolitical identity. I was also glad someone finally mentioned the Saint Laurant presents some very unique challenges for any designer and certaintly a very different case from Dior. Totally know what she means about fashion week- sigh...

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  8. I've loved her writing and her blog since its launch, thanks for sharing this interview. Whenever I read anything by her, Robin Givhan (who sadly doesn't write as much as she once did), Cathy Horyn, Hadley Freeman, Lisa Armstrong, Sarah Mower and Imran Amed, I think anyone who thinks anyone can be a fashion journalist is dead wrong. Not forgetting the great Holly Brubach!

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    1. hear, hear. i also read BoF regularly and Imran Amed has really done a fantastic job with his site. especially in how he handled the recent YSL PR kerfuffle...

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  9. Hi!
    I just found your blog (through Lin, actually) and absolutely love it!

    I really appreciate Friedman's response to street style photography. It's neither street (because the people photographed are professionals) nor style (because so many of the looks are "c/o", not people's personal aesthetic choices) anymore.

    I crave smart, fashion writing and Friedman is among the best writers out there. I also miss Robin Givhan.

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    1. thanks Petya! :D

      like you, i just really appreciate VF's down to earth take on things.

      ok, echoing you and lin on fave fashion writers - why isn't Robin Givhan writing so much anymore? we need more talented, diverse voices in the industry!

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