The first Vogue World happened last September, during NY Fashion Week. It was a fashion show and a street fair and a celebration of culture. So many stars were there, including Serena Williams who opened the show. This is an Anna Wintour production and as the NYT described it, “staged a commercial extravaganza with one eye on global domination”.
The global part came into fruition last night in London to open London Fashion Week with a presentation directed by Stephen Daldry meant to highlight London’s art and culture community and support performing arts organisations. Everyone keeps calling it London’s answer to the Met Gala. And in terms of attendance, no doubt, there was no shortage of big names, especially in fashion, who attended in support of Anna’s latest project. In terms of branding and brand understanding, though, Vogue World in its sophomore year still has a ways to go. I can remember the Met Gala but I could barely remember Vogue World New York. Because while the Met Gala is an annual party, an excuse for the stars to get dressed up and turn out, most people are pretty clear on the purpose. The Met Gala celebrates the Costume Institute’s latest exhibition, and that exhibition informs the theme. The theme adds another layer to the excitement around the Met Gala we’re not just watching people parade around in pretty looks (that would be the Oscars), we’re also watching to see how they interpreted the theme to come up with those looks. This is one of the reasons why the Met Gala is a major event on the gossip calendar, nearly on par if not already on par with the Oscars. Anna is hoping that Vogue World also will join that club. Maybe the sophomore edition of it will take a more firm hold in our cultural memory.
The theme of Vogue World: London 2023 was… well… London. London-based designers and labels contributed pieces. Sir Ian McKellan was the “voice of God” inside the theatre. And the supermodels. Kate Moss opened the show in custom Maison Mariela by John Galliano.
Who better to kick off #VogueWorld: London than Croydon-born supermodel Kate Moss? Moss walked onto the stage at Theatre Royal Drury Lane in a custom lamÃ© dress created by long-time friend and collaborator John Galliano. Learn more: https://t.co/ICsRL0Gjue pic.twitter.com/j1qTtAGu2i— Vogue Runway (@VogueRunway) September 14, 2023
And Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Linda Evangelista, and Christy Turlington closed out the performance, walking out on stage in what’s become their signature group entrance: holding hands, strutting, posing, and then walking off on their own, turning the theatres aisles into a runway.
It was, indeed, a major moment, a big score for Anna. And also promotion for Apple’s upcoming docuseries, The Super Models. Only five more sleeps!
As for the celebrity fashion…
Most of what we saw was pretty safe, unlike some of the iconic highlights we’ve seen from years past at the Met Gala. I can’t say that there were too many standouts – like we’re not dedicating a dozen articles to Vogue World today the way we would the day after the Met Gala. Instead, all my notables are here in one post, starting with Twiggy, appropriately, to honour the London fashion scene. She looked so good in this red velvet suit with a classic LV papillon.
Also really enjoyed Alexa Chung’s black feather set. This, to me, is London chic as f-ck. The cape crop top, the mini shorts, and the bonnet with the huge platforms, it’s whimsy and offbeat, British fashion nanny meets underground club girl.
And then there’s Jodie Turner-Smith. Thank god, always, for JTS. This is Viktor & Rolf’s signature bow with no pants, just underwear. And opera gloves! Provocative? Sure. But if there’s any to do it, this would be the one. And, holy sh-t, when you look like this, why the f-ck not.
My best dressed, however, is a student of Rihanna. Sienna Miller in Schiaparelli, like, seriously WOW. It’s so f-cking good from every angle, this gorgeous cut-off voluminous white shirt and the bubble skirt, I gasped, I love it SO MUCH, my only tiny, tiny note is that I wish she’d worn her hair all the way back and slick but that’s never been Sienna’s thing. The only Sienna we know is with a curtain bang and it’s fine, it’s just with the hair clean and crisp it would have taken this from 100% to 150%.