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SEPTEMBER 2017

81

100

Vogue’s editorial staff, 2017

108

See what we’re up to on Instagram

238

Autumn jackets and top-handle bags

363

395

Manolo Blahnik thrives on Russian culture and Sicilian antiquities

141

People, places, ideas and trends to watch now. Edited by Julia Hobbs

155

Marabou is more than just a flight of fancy, says Ellie Pithers

168

Relaxed tailoring that makes the cut

185

Glam rockers HMLTD are putting the art into pop. By Olivia Marks

187

Find your design inspiration written in the stars, urges Hayley Maitland

193

The stories unlocked in Joan Didion’s notebooks. By Tracy Daugherty

198

This year’s winning entry

SLOW WEST, PAGE 268

Clockwise from top left: wearsembroideredtulletopwithasymmetric hem, £4,580. wears beaded and sequined tulle top with feathers, to order. wears beaded tulle longdresswithfeathers,toorder. wears sequined tulle long dress, to order. wears lace top with leather whip-stitching, to order. All Alexander McQueen. Get the look: make-up byYSL Beauté.Eyes:CouturePaletteEyeContouring in Nude Contouring. Skin: Touche Eclat Le Cushion; Couture Contour Sculpting Palette. Hair: Hair By Sam McKnight. Cool Girl Texturising Spray; Modern Hairspray Multi-TaskStylingMist.Hair:SamMcKnight. Make-up:ValGarland.Nails:LorraineGriffin. Set design: Michael Howells. Production:

MarioTestino+. Digital artwork: R&D.

205

From the season’s enticingly broad palette to geometric bags, chain mail and the new demure – it’s all in our analysis of autumn’s essential trends

231 VOGUE FOCUS

Bella Mackie describes how her life was upended by a social-media stalker

236 FASHION TRAVEL

Vogue flies to the Canaries

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inside

WOMEN’S REALM

Features

282

A Vogue portfolio of high-achieving women past and present, from the Royal Ballet to Downing Street

298

Trends that defined the last 25 years

332

Charting the irresistible rise of Eighties art iconoclast Jean-Michel Basquiat, by his friends, lovers and collectors

338

Designers look back to remember a pivotal year in fashion. By Sarah Harris

Fashion

244

How this month’s cover girls found

their natural habitat in Vogue. Portraits by Mario Testino

254

Tap into the rhythm of the night in

shimmering sequins and risqué vinyl. Photographs by Nick Knight

268

Ranch-ready Americana feels right at home on the range. Photographs by Alasdair McLellan

302

Roam free in a punky mix of clashing prints. Photographs by Mario Testino

316

Make the transfer to autumn in the new downtown lines. Plus, Lisa Armstrong

heralds the return of wearable fashion. Photographed by Glen Luchford

THE NEW

SUPERWOMEN

“When it comes to rals, a devil-may- care attitude counts now”

RUN WILD,

PAGE 302

Beauty

345

Make-up marvels that pack a punch

351

Fragrances of note. By Nicola Moulton

352

Skincare is taking a disruptive approach, says Nicola Moulton

354

Scented shampoo and a sonic zapper

357

Set eyes a-flutter with a bold lash of colour this season

359

Are relentless wellness trends wearing us down? Lottie Winter thinks so

Allergy Tested.100% Fragrance Free.

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APRIL 1992

SEPTEMBER

2017

Vogue

t he first issue of Vogue with my name on

the masthead as editor was April 1992,

left. The cover I had chosen was a full-

length picture of an American model, Donna

Bunte, wearing neon-blue Liza Bruce leggings,

a Bella Freud shirt and turquoise suede

Manolo Blahnik mules. The photographer was Eric Boman, and I had pulled it out of a fashion shoot for that issue. I didn’t know

that most fashion covers were shot specifically

for that purpose. Everyone around me at Vogue

hated the picture and thought it looked too mass-market, but I liked the fact that you could see clothes rather than a stylised head shot. In the end, it sold very well. That issue of Vogue also included a fashion shoot by Terence Donovan; a tribute to Tina

Chow the ex-wife of Michael Chow who

had recently died of Aids-related illness; and

a couture shoot by Patrick Demarchelier

with dresses from Ungaro, Lacroix, Balmain and Yves Saint Laurent (none of whom now shows at couture) along with Dior, Chanel and Valentino (who still do). The features included

an interview with Brad Pitt, still a relatively up-and-coming actor, with brooding portraits

by Bruce Weber, an article on the disturbing

side-effects of aspirin, and some fashion

features such as “The Balmain Boy”, profiling the new designer at the house, Hervé Pierre. At that point we had regular cookery, travel, wine, restaurant and motoring columns. The arts pages covered a Robert Doisneau exhibition taking place in Oxford, a review of the forthcoming Steven Spielberg film Hook, and a short appreciation of photographer Javier Vallhonrat by Lucinda Chambers. Some 306 issues, 1,600 fashion shoots and, at

a calculated guess, 38,970 pages later, the world

and Vogue have both changed enormously. At that point my job was editing 12 issues a year of

a print magazine. End of story. As I depart,

the job is still to do that, but editing the print magazine is now a part of a whole that includes

guiding a 24/7 website, Vogue.co.uk, and broadly overseeing digital content on myriad platforms including Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram Stories. At a time when Vogue has never resonated with so many people via these different channels, I have also been responsible for finding new ways to keep the title relevant, reach new audiences and create new interest hence my launching the Vogue Festival five years ago, helping to mastermind last year’s National Portrait Gallery exhibition, Vogue 100: A Century of Style, keeping a watch >

Vogue below, Vogue 100 Right

tenure, but when I arrived he had never shot a major fashion story for the magazine. We were the first Vogue to commission Tim Walker, who has grown to be a key contributor over the past two decades, partnering with our fashion editor Kate Phelan. More recently we have been working with a younger generation of photographers including Harley Weir, Tyrone Lebon, Jamie Hawkesworth and Colin Dodgson, whose methods and less stylised vision hark back to the generation of “grunge” photographers such as Corinne Day and Juergen Teller whom I commissioned back in the early Nineties when I arrived. But for me, the real excitement, the real fascination has been in working alongside the Vogue team to come up with ideas and to make them happen. There is nothing more thrilling than thinking of something whether that be a shoot, an interview, a social-observation feature or a themed issue that you want to share with your readers, and watching it come together and then finally appear bound in a luscious package. I have loved all the detail,

the stuff of the magazine the headlines, the picture research, the story you can tell in

a picture and caption. And now the ability to break news 24 hours a day, to offer a daily commentary and engage with an enormous audience via social media has only added to the fascination. For example, in this issue I am particularly delighted to be able to feature the Metropolitan Police commissioner, Cressida Dick (page 282), who as I write has found herself dealing with the terrible events at London Bridge and Borough Market and the aftermath of the horrendous Grenfell Tower e. And, in the kind of story Vogue can do so well, our features assistant, Hayley Maitland, has contributed a first-class research job of collecting an array of oral reminiscences that bring the late New York artist Jean-Michel Basquiat almost back to life (page 332). It’s impossible to acknowledge everyone who made my years at Vogue so rewarding, but Lucinda Chambers, my fashion director for 24 years, and Frances Bentley, my managing editor, who kept the whole office on the road for an equal amount of time, have won my eternal thanks. But there are so many others here who have made my job more enjoyable and the results more interesting than they would have been without them. Now it’s time for myself and Vogue to start on new journeys. I’m very excited to see where we both go.

on a publishing programme of Vogue books, chairing the British Fashion Council/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund which has supported eight years of new fashion talent, and imagining all manner of other events which, sadly, I won’t now be there to see through. More work, for sure, but endlessly fascinating.

The world today has smartphones and tablets, e-commerce and Google Maps. We also live with the challenges of Isis, Al-Qaeda and the reinvigorated popularity of right-wing extremism and, in this country, the impending reality of life after Brexit. News, whether current affairs or fashion, is no longer broken

in print but arrives via a ping on a

screen, day and night. The globe is

a much smaller place, with travel

accessible to many more through more affordable pricing and initiatives such as Airbnb. And fashion has become an enormous global business, with international designer stores placed like territorial flags in expensive shopping streets across the world, and a fast, cheap fashion industry offering everyone the ability to buy into the current trends as they happen. In 1992 there was no Zara, Cos or Nike on the British high street. Dolce & Gabbana, Chloé, Bottega Veneta, Miu Miu and Prada were only available via department stores, if at all, and of course most of the current generation of British fashion talent were either not yet born or were still testing out their drawing skills in kindergarten. Editing British Vogue has been the greatest of privileges and has meant that I have spent most of my days working alongside some of the finest creative talent around. One of the reasons the magazine has flourished for so long is that we have always kept our magpie eye on new talent, and it is a matter of particular pride that we have had such wonderful partnerships with such a range of photographers. Mario Testino, the photographer of this month’s cover and two stories in this issue, has probably shot the largest number of pages during my

BRUCE WEBER

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To mark Alexandra Shulman’s final issue as editor-in-chief, the

magazine’s team assembled for a group portrait on the roof of Vogue House

O…

Ellie Pithers, fashion features editor. Anna Blomefield, sub-editor. Victoria Willan, senior sub-editor. Clare Murray, chief sub-editor. Helen Bain, acting chief sub-editor. Emma Hughes, sub-editor. Hayley Maitland, features assistant. Camilla Fitz-Patrick, editorial business manager. Naomi Pike, Miss Vogue editor and social media manager. Michael Trow, picture editor. Jane Hassanali, art editor. Helen Hibbird, merchandise editor. Scarlett Conlon, Vogue Daily editor. Rachel Edwards, engagement manager. Carol Woolton, jewellery editor. Philip Jackson, junior designer. Katie Dufort, fashion assistant. Parveen Narowalia, digital content producer. Eilidh Williamson, designer. Nicole Mowbray, features editor. Susie Rushton, features editor. Olivia Marks, commissioning editor. Elizabeth White, editorial coordinator. Florence Arnold, senior fashion assistant. Katie Lowe, fashion bookings assistant. Sam Rogers, acting Vogue.co.uk editor. Pom Ogilvy, fashion coordinator. Charlotte Pearson, personal assistant to the editor. Ben Evans, art coordinator. Lisa Niven, Vogue.co.uk

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beauty and health editor. Katie Berrington, Vogue.co.uk arts and lifestyle editor. Araminta Markes, acting fashion bookings editor. Nicola Moulton, beauty and health director. Beatriz de Cossio, fashion assistant. Cai Lunn, associate picture editor. Sacha Forbes, special events editor. Julia Brenard, acting sittings editor. Julia Hobbs, fashion news editor. Lottie Winter, beauty assistant. Lauren Murdoch-Smith, deputy beauty and health editor. Fiona Golfar, editor-at-large. Lucinda Chambers, fashion director.

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Alexandra Shulman, editor-in-chief. Frances Bentley, managing editor. Jaime Perlman, creative director. Sarah Harris, fashion features director. Emily Sheffield, deputy editor. Kate Phelan, senior contributing fashion editor. Verity Parker, fashion editor. Naomi Smart, shopping editor. Alastair Nicol, digital picture editor. Brooke Mace, senior picture researcher. Lauren Dudley, junior digital picture editor. Serena Hood, executive fashion director. Phil Buckingham, art director

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ALEXANDRA SHULMAN, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

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inVOGUE

Olympic athlete Diane Dixon in a Dapper Dan Louis Vuitton mash-up

Danielle Macdonald as rapper Patricia Dombrowski in new film Patti Cake$

MESSAGE

m ore than 30 years since it emerged, hip-hop’s New School uniform of Kangol bucket hat and chubby shearling coat has returned, in

part thanks to rising model and muse Slick Woods. The Minneapolis-born catwalk star who caused a sensation when she opened the Marc Jacobs autumn/winter ’17 show, inspired by documentary Hip-Hop Evolution embodies the modern-day revival, charisma included. (A native New Yorker, Jacobs is himself no stranger to the scene rapper Riff Raff dedicated the track “Marc Jacobs” to his swag-worthy designs.) Meanwhile, at Gucci, Alessandro Michele paid homage to Eighties Harlem tailor Dapper Dan’s idiosyncratic designer remixes. It’s not just the get-up that’s undergoing a rebirth. This month, the ultimate guide to achieving hip-hop stardom comes from Gucci Mane, whose long-awaited memoir arrives on

shelves on September 19. Or follow the fictional story of aspiring New Jersey rapper Patricia Dombrowski from director Geremy Jasper, in Patti Cake$ (released on September 1). Accessorise Marc Jacobs’s plush scarlet tracksuits and chunky corduroy jackets with attitude: the New School’s “postural semantics” (a term coined by philosopher Cornel West to describe the stances made famous by Run-DMC, LL Cool J and others) are fast becoming the go-to pose for the new generation of streetwear heroines. Follow Italian stylist Valeria Semushina for a crash

course in how it’s done.

>

Rising streetwear heroines Valeria Semushina and, bottom left and right, Veneda Budny and Slick Woods

’s

THE PEOPLE, PLACES, IDEAS AND TRENDS TO WATCH NOW

E dited by JULIA HOBBS

Dapper Dan with LL Cool J

HOW TO WEAR

HAIR

Slick it back: bed hair won’t do (the blanket should be the only suggestion of a lie-in)

JACKET

Pull back on the “herbal”, homespun vibe: Céline’s corporate tailoring is your guide for how to wear suiting now – wide silk lapels and roomy power shoulders included

SARONG

Lose the corset belt. It’s now about the winter sarong, worn like a front-fastening apron

BLANKET

Still wearing a slogan tee? Don’t. It’s now all about Céline’s pub-menu blanket, featuring such treats as jam roly-poly and bangers and mash (prices not subject to inflation)

FOOTWEAR

Switch spiky stilettos for a western heel. Under Phoebe Philo’s watch, the cowboy boot just got serious

Monaco: mega yachts and tax perks, of course, but the Mediterranean’s leading design destination? Yes: the city-state, which counts the New National Museum of Monaco, the Francis Bacon Art Foundation and Cap Moderne among its cultural highs, is now home to the Nomad festival (Nomadmonaco.com) – the first annual contemporary-design event on the Riviera. This year saw contributions from LA artist Jennifer Guidi, designer Rick Owens, and the Campana Brothers. Fair founders Giorgio Pace and Nicolas Bellavance-Lecompte are powering the Côte’s cultural revival. “It is historically a region where artists would gather. Our idea was to create a new reason to rediscover the coast,” says Bellavance- Lecompte. Check into the Société des Bains de Mer hotel for the April 2018 edition.

VOGUE

Meet Joshua Leary (above), the clandestine 27-year- old music producer from Chester who makes beats for Kanye West, Travis Scott, Danny Brown and Sia under the alias Evian Christ (a pseudonym originally cooked up to name his own football team and the result of clicking twice on the “random article” tab on Wikipedia, which led him first to Evian-Les-Bains, then “someone called Christianson, but there was a character limit…”). The unintended air of mystery that has clung to the dance-music prodigy since he first uploaded a track to YouTube in 2011 while training to be a primary-school teacher, is set to evaporate when his debut album, Revanchist, arrives this autumn. Unbeknown to him, journalists from The Fader and Pitchfork had picked up on the songs and were contacting his unmanned account. Then Kanye called. Why all the fuss? This is home-grown “ethereal dance music”, as Leary describes it, and record label Warp (home to Brian Eno, Aphex Twin and Kelela) doesn’t ever miss a beat. Did we mention he also pulls off full-look tennis whites year-round?

Left: Rock Stone

inVOGUE

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Above: left

i ’ve been called ‘tacky’ quite a lot!” laughs Michael Halpern, the Hackney-based candidate poised to take Bob Mackie’s title

as sultan of sequins. “Fabulous” would be a better description: the 29-year-old Parsons and Central Saint Martins alumnus is currently dazzling the capital’s fashion scene thanks to his sequin-smothered debut autumn/winter collection. The good/bad taste doublethink offers up Studio 54 references (he’s a New Yorker by birth) and an unabashedly glamorous aesthetic: his eponymous brand is built on disco- ready minidresses, flares and jumpsuits, drawing an international fan base. Marion Cotillard was the first to wear his designs on the Croisette in Cannes, sporting a sequined bodice complete with 5½ft train. “I always reference over-the-top opulence and juxtapose it with classic bustiers and draping that recalls Charles James, Lacroix, Christian Dior,” says Halpern. Little wonder that he honed his instinct for glitz in the Atelier Versace studio, an experience he likens to “finishing school… I’ve never felt so welcomed and accepted. The Versace team is like a family.” Red-carpet dominance beckons. EP

RED STAR OVER RUSSIA, AT TATE MODERN HM

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“There’ them…” Mica

AFTER SEASONS WAITING IN THE WINGS, FEATHERS ARE FLYING HIGH AGAIN, WRITES ELLIE PITHERS

W hether or not you would ever entertain feathers probably depends on your

allergies, your proximity to Las Vegas, and the number of hen parties you’ve been forced to attend. For some, they’re the frivolous birthright of the boudoir babe, a knowing wink to Marilyn Monroe’s marabou mules and Mae West’s feather-trimmed negligée. For others, they’re Dame Edna. At what point did plumage make the leap from flirty to downright thirsty? The shedding has always been a bore, as Fred Astaire would attest Ginger Rogers nearly quit Top Hat when he

told her she couldn’t wear her dress (she described it as “like the blue you find in the paintings of Monet… with myriads of ostrich feathers”) because tiny barbs ended up all over his white tie and tails. When Ginger threatened to walk, Astaire swallowed his vexation, and the feathers can be seen wafting across the screen in the wake of the duo dancing “Cheek to Cheek”. But not even Astaire was subjected to

VOGUE

the true horror of feathers. Picture a gang of 15 adult women sporting fuchsia boas and L-plates, rampaging around a market town chasing a man with a six-pack in the interests of celebrating a soon-to-be-lost maidenhood. I blame Ann Summers. The thing is, fashion didn’t get the memo and it is determined to make feathers fabulous again. The autumn catwalks were plump with them, designed to inject clothes with a glamour quotient that harked back to old Hollywood. “Uberfeminine” was the buzzword at JW Anderson, where trailing ostrich feathers sprouted from hems of strappy jersey dresses. “Overwhelming” was the verdict at Balenciaga, where feathers provided the comprehensible fragment of fabulousness for the excessive final look: a model bobbing down the catwalk in a floor-length couture gown with an XXL bag on her hip, every inch every inch! of both covered in feathers. At Raf Simons’s Calvin Klein show, meaning was shifting: affixed to spray upwards on cocktail dresses, feathers recalled a bygone sophistication; slipped under transparent plastic covers, they felt odder like specimens in a Petri dish. The prize for most subversive plume handling must, however, go to Miuccia Prada. Cognisant of the sociological implications of trimming something in feathers, she spent last season laying the foundations of the “feathers for day” formula, slyly adorning schoolmarmish pleated knee-length skirts in orgasmic marabou “because it was the most silly piece to put with reality”. She went one further for autumn, proposing feathers as part of a new feminist uniform conceived to test your theories on old-fashioned desire. The models didn’t wend their way seductively down a soft-lit runway; they swarmed decisively through a set that resembled a Seventies motel, dressed in crystal-embroidered dresses and shoes loaded with pulsating ostrich trims. >

“The weapons of seduction are always the same,” Miuccia explained backstage after the show. “Feathers. Lingerie. When you are an educated feminist, sometimes you reject this, but it is true that these have stayed the same for many, many years. How

is it that desire is necessarily linked to these things?” In other words: can feathers be anything other than come- to-bed? Note that as a young feminist politics student, Prada attended Marxist rallies dressed

head-to-toe in Yves Saint Laurent. So if anyone can recast feathers as feminist weapons, she can. That’s right your feathers are feminist this autumn. They’re also full

of spirit. “My autumn collection was inspired by Niki de Saint Phalle, whose personal style was eccentric and extraordinary she often wore feathers in a spontaneous way to add character to a look,” says Julie de Libran, creative director at Sonia Rykiel, who sprayed feathers liberally across her loose silk dresses and suits. “I find feathers can bring a certain glamour and spirit to a silhouette.” Bruno Frisoni, chiefly responsible for footwear fripperies at Roger Vivier, agrees. “Feathers bring an airy, poetic look to any kind of style a flat shoe in particular becomes so special when feathers add a lightness. I like them with a crystal buckle.” Feathers are swarming the red carpet, too. From Julianne Moore

in feathered Calvin Klein to Uma Thurman, a woman who knows

feathers give her the old-school edge, they’re sprouting from seams with abandon. Lauren Santo Domingo is another feather aficionado. “I always say feathers and sequins are my two favourite food groups. They’re the clever twist that makes the evening festive,” she emails from New York. “My second wedding dress was feathered after the ceremony and before the party, my close

friend Olivier Theyskens, who designed it, cut it in half for me. I wore feathers to the Met Ball earlier this year, too; I worked with Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez [of

Proenza Schouler] and we looked at past Comme des Garçons collections, which surprisingly feature a lot of feathers. There is something irreverent and a bit comical about them, no?” Agreed. My own first step towards feather rehabilitation came in the form of a black Reformation minidress, the off- the-shoulder neckline trimmed with marabou. As someone who is averse to seductive eveningwear, I’m a little ashamed to admit that the feathers induced a wiggle in my step.I felt like a glamorous sea anemone. Turns out a tiny dose of feathers can be just the antidote to reality your wardrobe needs. To hijack Emily Dickinson come autumn, hope is the thing with feathers. Q

Left

Above

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t here’s been a new conservatism creeping into pop culture, where flamboyance is frowned upon,” muses Henry Spychalski,

frontman of six-piece HMLTD, from behind

a pair of sunglasses. From the look of him

postbox-red, second-skin PVC trousers on the hottest day of the year, shirt unbuttoned to the navel and bleached blue hair (dyed emerald for

Vogue’s shoot less than a week later) it doesn’t appear that he’s particularly interested in what people might deem acceptable. Nor, it seems, do his five male bandmates, all aged between 20 and 22, and all equally fabulously dressed. They’re as unapologetically flamboyant as they

come not just in appearance,but in performance.

“We were all quite alienated by going to

live shows and just seeing people standing on

a stage,” Spychalski explains of the band’s up- close-and-personal approach to performing, rather than the aloof stance favoured by so

many guitar bands. “We don’t want to be a band

in the narrow sense of the term, just writing and recording music. We want to be more.” And they are. Indeed, art collective might be a more appropriate description (although categorisation of any kind is roundly rejected), given the immersive, multisensory nature of their acclaimed live shows each performance comes with its own set design and the production that goes into their brilliantly surreal music videos. In Youtube footage, their sweaty, sold-out gigs fizz with an energy that refuses to be contained, even on screen. This, as one commenter writes, feels like something big. They’re soon to embark on a UK tour, but when they’re not on stage, the band spend long days in a cramped, windowless room in the aptly named Fortress Studios, a relic of its kind in an increasingly sterile Shoreditch, where the smell of decades-old cigarette smoke still lingers. If these walls could speak, they would splutter. It feels like a fitting home for the band, whose influences a heady mix of glam rock, post-punk and New Romanticism, among others are mostly rooted in a bygone era. But although they may borrow from artists and scenes of decades past, they are far from a

pastiche. “It’s about re-contextualising,” says Spychalski. “You’ve got to look backwards in order to propel yourself forward.” While the capital’s music scene may have embraced HMLTD (formerly known as Happy Meal Ltd, an ironic name they want to distance themselves from, and to which McDonald’s objected), not everywhere is ready for the band’s sound and vision. “A large reason for me coming to London in the first place was so that I could live and dress in a way that I felt was true to myself,” says Spychalski. “In Devon [where he grew up] I always had to place a censorship on myself. We want to inspire confidence in people to be themselves whoever that might be.” Q

FUTURE LEGEND

GQ David Bowie: A Life

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w hen the space race was at its peak 50 years ago, fashion and the arts were captivated by

visions of life across the Milky Way, from André Courrèges and Pierre Cardin’s out- of-this-world clothing to Stanley Kubrick’s groundbreaking film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Now we’re looking skywards once again. In February, Nasa announced the discovery of Trappist-1, a group of planets that may well be able to support life, with further plans afoot to launch a craft that will reach the sun’s atmosphere next year. Not content to follow the action from terra firma? Get your name on the waiting list for Virgin Galactic’s commercial space flights, due to begin propelling passengers into a microgravity

zone 100km above the Earth next summer. Meanwhile, Elon Musk’s company Space X is gearing up to take a pair of holidaymakers on a trip around the moon in 2018.

Back on planet Earth, the heavens made their influence felt on the runways this season. Christopher Kane borrowed flying-saucer prints from late New York artist (and devoted futurist) Ionel Talpazan; Chanel’s Grand Palais spectacle included a giant rocket launching 33ft in the air; and Gucci’s Alessandro Michele selected aliens to model his a/w 2017 collection complete with UFO prints on Instagram. If you’re not quite ready to sport a head-to-toe intergalactic look, follow Coco Chanel’s lead and don star- inspired accessories. “I wanted to cover women with constellations! Stars! Stars of all sizes,” she declared of her haute-jewellery collection in 1932. There’s nothing like aiming high. Q

Universe:

Exploring the

Astronomical

World

Top left

exclusively at

O Keeping a Notebook”, one Joan Didion’s early essays,

suggests jotting things down

is the mind’s way of saving bits of string otherwise “too short to use”. Memory is a pack-rat’s compulsion, a private notebook a secret stash, a hoard useful to no one but the hoarder. Didion was in her early thirties, writing about popular culture for American fashion magazines, when she first published the Notebook essay.

n

of

In retrospect, she would admit that in her youth, as in the essay, she romanticised her “self ” as an evolving entity worth keeping track of: the 17-year-old drinking vodka and orange juice on a California river levee, the shy 23-year-old wearing ill- fitting skirts in downtown Manhattan. Didion’s best writing has always documented the breakdown of the self amid uncertainty. In the Sixties and Seventies, America’s centre was not

These are

not just

random

jottings

fixed to

the page

VOGUEview

holding, she said. The notebook she

kept while writing her second novel, Play It As It Lays (1970), now archived in the Bancroft Library at Berkeley,

indicates how completely her authorial

self blurred into her fictional

character’s personality. The novel’s

heroine, a brooding California woman,

compulsively collects newspaper clippings about gruesome child deaths. They suit her gloom. Didion’s actual notebook in those days contained such clippings, along with handwritten commentaries she later gave to her heroine. Often, in both her novels and her essays, the wall between fact and fiction was thin. As a seasoned journalist, covering some of the late 20th century’s most turbulent stories Vietnam, hippy culture, the civil-rights movement Didion carried a notebook not just to aid her recollection but also to reveal the gaps between private behaviours and public roles where society’s hidden gears turned. At one point in the notebook just released as part of her latest book, South and West, she compares two comments overheard on a trip she made through the American South. One is a remark applauding political graft (“He’s only got four years to make his stake”); the other a surprised observation of her, made by a fellow guest at a motel:

“Hey look, there’s somebody with a bikini on.” These are not just random jottings fixed coincidentally to the page they are bits of mental string, each too short to form a sociological thesis. But when arranged together, they illuminate in a flash aspects of the South’s complex moral codes. In many cases, keeping a notebook was Didion’s way of protecting herself. By recording specific items,

concentrating quietly “to the exclusion of past or future concerns”, she said, she remained almost invisible in dangerous circumstances. While covering the civil war in El Salvador in 1982, she collected street details in a notebook as though they were magical amulets repelling harm: translucent corrugated plastic windows, a taxi driver crossing himself in an intersection, little blonde children, silent birds. On certain pages of the notebook, her handwriting started out legibly then scattered into large, hurried loops, as if Didion were running from a sudden attack, still scribbling, convinced that writing

would save her life.

Q

“South and West” (4th Estate, £10) is

published on September 21

OLIVE POMETSEY, THIS YEAR’S WINNER OF VOGUE’S ANNUAL COMPETITION FOR YOUNG WRITERS, IMPRESSED THE JUDGES WITH A CAPTIVATING ACCOUNT OF HER GHANAIAN HERITAGE

a kwaaba, Kyerewaa!” An unfamiliar face is beaming at me, shaking my hand.

According to them, I’m home now, and they are my family. It’s taken me

11 years, but I’ve finally returned. It’s my 22nd birthday and, for the first time in my life, I wake up feeling older. Eating breakfast at midnight and falling in love with strangers: this is what being 22 means to Taylor Swift.

In

the music video she bounces around

in

her heart-shaped sunglasses rose-

Above: the 2017 Vogue Talent Contest finalists. Clockwise from left: Helena Fletcher, 22; Christobel Hastings, 25; Cody Delistraty, 25; Caragh Taylor, 17; Anna Samson, 24; Amy Wakeham, 24; Emma McKinlay, 24; Olive Pometsey, 22; Sophia Miller, 20

tinted, literally. With all of my friends also celebrating their 22nd birthdays, “22” is a song I’ve heard a lot over the past year, but in Ghana, Azonto

music reigns supreme. My cousins are shocked that I don’t recognise the song everyone is dancing to. I’m shocked that they’ve never heard of Beyoncé. Half of my life has passed since

I last visited this part of me. I’m biracial: my mother British, my father Ghanaian. The duality of my cultural

identity is probably obvious to many outsiders, but only now do I truly begin to realise the magnitude of my mixed heritage. Nobody here knows that it’s my

birthday; they are all gathered in this village that my father grew up in for

a more solemn occasion, Grandma

Kyerewaa’s funeral. I had met her twice. She is my Ghanaian namesake. Funerals in Ghana are a big deal. Commiserations and celebrations last for days, and hundreds flock to pay

their respects, eat, pray and, of course, dance to Azonto. To my younger brother and me, it’s a cultural crash- course. We quickly brush up on the customs. When you enter a room full

of people, greet everyone individually,

working clockwise. Shake their hands, say “Akwaaba”, and blush at your awkward pronunciation. At night I lie awake, drenched in

sweat, straining to listen to the mystic silence of rural Ghana. I recall my father once telling me that my great- grandmother was a voodoo priestess, and in the all-encompassing darkness

I imagine her casting charms over

the village. Here, the superstitions that make the British side of me raise my eyebrows make sense and

seem natural. Here, I feel her power.

I don’t feel like myself. If Ghana is my home then why am

I homesick? I’m touched to find out

that a flushing toilet has been installed

in my grandmother’s house especially

for our visit, but the addition of this luxury does not help me fit in. I yearn

to be back in Britain. I’m missing my

cat and, shockingly, the cold weather. It’s difficult to talk to the people my own age how can we relate? They ask why I can’t stay for longer and if

I can help them to get passports so

that they can come to visit me. I don’t know how to give an adequate

response. I speak to two girls who say that they wish they had lighter skin like my mother and me. My heart breaks. I grew up in a small village in East Yorkshire and none of my friends are black. As I struggle to relate to my African heritage in rural Ghana, it dawns on me that I have never really been able to relate to rural England either. I’m an outsider by default. My friends are fantastic but our worlds are fundamentally different. The disparities are slight, but accumulated they leave me feeling isolated. Ironically, I know that I’m not alone in this condition. Research shows that biracial children are at

greater risk of mental-health issues due to their inability to define their identity in racial terms. Conversations about “belonging” dominate the academic studies on the subject and, for me, it all hits very close to home.

That’s if I can work out where home is. At the funeral, a brass band plays contagious beats and, caught by the rhythm, everyone dances, waving their ceremonial cloths in the air.

It looks like fun and I want to join in,

but fear ensures that I stay firmly in my seat. There’s no good reason for me to be embarrassed no one here would judge me but I cannot help feeling as though my clumsy dance moves would reveal my true identity

as a racial imposter. Race is as much of

a social construct as gender. I think of

Simone de Beauvoir’s groundbreaking

feminist theories and her quote that “one is not born, but rather becomes, a woman”. Does this mean that I’m still learning to be black? Another new face greets me with

an enthusiastic handshake and “Akwaaba”. Akwaaba means welcome

in Twi, the most widely spoken language in Ghana. I take a deep

breath, welcome my Ghanaian

heritage to the surface and, as nervous as I am, I get up and dance. Q

ROKSANDA

LOEWE

ANYA HINDMARCH

Design

LED

As the weather cools and we turn to home comforts, what are the interiors updates you need to carry you through the season? Look to deep inky shades and Samsung’s genius QLED television this autumn

Photographs by Graham Atkins-Hughes Styling by Florence Rolfe

S plashed across the runway at many a/w ’17 shows, deep autumnal tobaccos, inky blues and rich russets are back for the season. Embrace the warm reds that ruled the runway at Roksanda, the cherry leather and ice-blue clash of Anya Hindmarch and the leafy tones of Loewe not

only in your wardrobe, but also your home. Pair them with Samsung’s most enticing television yet, and what more do you need for winter evenings? It’s time to decode the trends at the shows and translate them into our homes. With a plethora of incredible interiors on offer look to Jonathan Adler, Talisman and the Conran Shop for prime examples the time is right to up your at- home style statements, from trinkets to technology. Luckily for aficionados of interiors, technology has come on in leaps and bounds from the days of clunky plastic. Whereas once we would have to sacrifice a small part of our

design vision to accommodate large and often unsightly appliances, now the team at Samsung has done away with the tangle of cables, the army of remotes and the chunky television set. Meet the QLED. This curved and chrome-finished delight is a feat of both function and design. Listening to consumer demand for a television that looks good from every angle, Samsung gave us the QLED; not only does it have near-invisible cables

and a remote that can control any paired device, it also has

a wealth of stand options to make sure it fits effortlessly in

any situation. Once you work out the space it’s going to live in, choose the Gravity stand or Studio stand (pictured here) or hang it on the wall with the no-gap mount to enjoy

a television that looks as good switched off as it does on. The picture quality, it goes without saying, is second to none, using Quantum Dot technology to achieve better brightness and colour than other models on the market. Rethink what television means, see colour in a new light and welcome the brilliance of Samsung designs into your home. Q

Find out more about the QLED at Samsung.com

VOGUE PROMOTION

THE I AM EDITION

Hari Nef & Casil McArthur

DISCOVER MORE AT VAGABOND.COM

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VOGUE

The

AUTUMN

SPECTRUM

2017

STYLE NOTE

Meet the coats that stand out from the pack: whether puffed, checked, glossed or somewhere in between, outerwear this season is more versatile than ever. The boldest option? Autumn’s update on the “flasher’s mac” now entirely transparent, all the better to show off the dress underneath. As for the most reliable, a teddy-bear coat doubles up as a blanket. And the chicest colour? White, obviously dry-cleaning bills be damned. EP

The

STYLE NOTE

STYLE NOTE

AG ADRIANO GOLDSCHMIED

AGJEANS.COM

The

FROM TOP

VOGUEspy

The

i

right EP

VOGUE

The

AUTUMN

SPECTRUM

2017

 

 

The

LET CHAIN MAIL, CRYSTAL MESH AND HIGH-OCTANE

SEQUINS RAMP UP THE DRAMA

n ow that full-cover sequins, dazzling chain mail and crystal mesh have returned (thanks to Gucci, Emilia

Wickstead, Paco Rabanne and Versace), it’s time to take a new approach to evening style. Obliterate the smart-casual dress code and go all-out. Scene-stealing glistening metals ooze playful glamour the sort that automatically invites fun. Step up Saint Laurent’s rhinestone

boots (arguably the most notorious accessory of the season following Rihanna’s early adoption) or Céline’s molten jazz-era tap shoe. How about Rochas’s bronzed, tasselled flapper gown for day? And note how good they look with a late-summer glow or under the beam of a smartphone, as anyone who’s sought out a highly snappable dress or shocking heels knows. JH

www.ennigaldi.co.uk

RED

ALERT

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP C

The

AUTUMN

SPECTRUM

2017

VOGUEspy

The

EP

IN ACCIAROLI, ITALY, FOLKS LIVE LONGER, HEALTHIER LIVES. MUST BE SOMETHING IN THE WATER.

No1 Rosemary Water is the first and only drink in the world to contain pure rosemary extract.

It was inspired by the Italian town of Acciaroli, where people are living to over 100 years old in unusually large numbers.

Almost 350 (more than 1 in 10) of them are now healthy centenarians with little or no Alzheimers, Arthritis or Cataracts.

Scientists believe their daily consumption of rosemary is responsible for their incredible good health and longevity.

Order online for UK and European delivery at rosemarywater.com

The

AUTUMN

SPECTRUM

2017

SH

Aspinal Hobo Bag in Bordeaux Pebble

ASPINALOFLONDON.COM

TEL: +44 (0) 1428 648180

With 495 stores in 35 different countries, MCM is taking the world by storm. Little wonder, when the new-season drop contains a mix of tactile shearling and bright leather to lust over. This is the new wave of luxury

t

Q

Visit Mcm.com to view the collection

VOGUE PROMOTION

Opposite: Below left: Below:

VOGUE PROMOTION

WHEN AN INTERNET STALKER MATERIALISED IN REAL LIFE, BELLA MACKIE’S WORLD WAS TURNED UPSIDE-DOWN

h ave you ever fallen down a social- media hole? A quick glance at a friend’s Instagram page leads

you to click on an acquaintance’s account then before you know it,

you’ve been looking at photographs of

a total stranger for 10 minutes,