The Business: Condé Nast’s Wintourian Revolution

by Emma Leuman, Fashion Writer

Anna Wintour 01
Anna Wintour, Artistic Director of Condé Nast and Editor-in-Chief of Vogue.

As Editor-in-Chief of Vogue, Anna Wintour is the most influential name in fashion.  Influencing department store buyers and designers nationwide, she has a hand in virtually everything concerning the fashion industry. She decides what will be considered trendy in the seasons to come and she voices her opinion through promoting certain brands and models in the pages of America’s fashion bible.

Vogue has long differentiated itself as a leader in the realm of fashion publications, so it makes sense that Wintour’s ideas would significantly sway its readers.  However as of last March, Wintour’s influence has reached far beyond those who receive a monthly copy of Vogue.

Condé Nast, the publishing house that produces Vogue along with other popular magazines like Glamour, Lucky and Vanity Fair, created a position especially for Wintour within their masthead.

As the new artistic director for Condé Nast, Wintour has the ability to give advice to, and in some cases replace, the editors of the other publications.  Chosen by the publishing house because of her uncanny ability to forecast trends and thrive as a leader in the industry, it is expected that she will successfully take the company in a promising artistic direction.

Taylor Swift on the cover of Glamour Magazine's March 2014 issue.
Taylor Swift on the cover of Glamour Magazine’s March 2014 issue.

Additionally, some have said that Wintour was chosen to take on this new position because of Vogue’s successful integration of social media and technology based innovations.  The magazine has beautiful digital editions as well as a large following on Instagram and Twitter; something that other Condé Nast publications could potentially benefit from.

Wintour’s changes can already be seen at a few of the major glossies, including at Lucky where it is said that Eva Chen’s appointment as Editor-in-Chief was in response to advice given by Wintour. Lucky has been floundering as of late and even after Chen’s promotion its number of ad pages continued to be less than desirable.  The success of one of Wintour’s first actions as artistic director still remains to be seen.Yet more recent noticeable changes to one Condé Nast publication include the latest issue of Glamour.  The magazine looks markedly different from past issues, featuring a minimalistic cover and a star with a Vogue-approved look. The pages of Glamour are a bit more fashion-focused than they were previously, but the magazine continues to adhere to its upbeat voice.

It cannot be questioned that Wintour has had success in developing a unique identity for Vogue, and her appointment at Condé Nast suggests that the owners of the company are looking for a bit of help to bring their other publications up to par.  We can only imagine that we will continue to see her influence in these publications, whether it will appear as staff changes or in the aesthetic looks of the magazines themselves.

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