With new editor Catherine Ostler stepping into her Tatler shoes in March (note to Ostler: YSL cage boots are the order of the day), and outgoing editor Geordie Greig making tracks for her former stomping ground, the Evening Standard, Lucie Goulet tackles the latest issue of the British society mag, which declares 'The Brit supermodel is back'...
Forget about Jacquetta Wheeler on the cover – the real stars of this issue are those cagey YSL shoes. They are on Masha Tyelna’s feet in ‘Barely There’, on Jacquetta Wheeler’s feet in ‘The Pose Show’ and illustrate the metallic futuristic trend for ‘Tatler Loves Fashion’ (not to forget their appearance in two pages of oh-so-coincidental YSL ads).
This is the fashion bible issue of the society bible. And, just like the cover, it's punchy, bright, colourful and full of kaleidoscopic prints.
Wheeler makes her ‘Pose Show’. She explains how she hates being labelled an “aristocratic model” (one could be dubbed worse things, no?) and discusses her involvement in the charity HemiHelp for hemiplegia* sufferers. She was discovered by Mario Testino, had to learn to walk down a catwalk and did some work on the Obama campaign, “the best thing she has ever done”. The feature is accompanied by shots of Wheeler set amongst a cacophony of neon colours, wearing flashy blue and muted silvers and sporting an 80s-punk-style 'do and Back To The Future-inspired sunglasses.
The good bits:
- ‘Rat-a-Tat Tatler’ remembers how the magazine ignored the First World War (dubbed “The Great Adventure”) before realising that “the British upper-class were going to fight the war to the last drop of their blue blood”. The magazine cover girls at the time were war widows, and the editors furiously disapproved of the possibility that “the gardens of London’s mansions might be turned over to potatoes”.
- ‘Hope in a Darkened Heart’ is Addison O’Dea’s compelling tale of how he coped with his father’s death.
Blink and skip it:
- In ‘Got a Light?’, Sally Storey, “Britain’s first lady of lighting”, ponders the merits of chandeliers versus downlighters. Clever use of Festival of Light related metaphors. Obviously, lighting deserves much more strategising than I ever thought.
- In ‘Off with her hair?’, Vassi Chamberlain (pro long hair) and Ticky Hedley-Dent (short hair aficionado) debate the merits of hair length. It comes back to a single question: Can long hair ever be appropriate when you grow older?
- ‘Coco Cabana’ sees Coco Sumner (the 18-year-old offspring of Sting and Trudie Styler) and her crew posited as the new kids in town to watch. She leads the ska band I Blame Coco, has been named one of the most fashion-forward London teens and appeared alongside Agyness Deyn, Lily Donaldson, Alex Pettyfer, Eddie Redmayne and Blondelle in Burberry's spring/summer 2008 ad campaign.
- Model Masha Tyelna went to Marrakesh for ‘Barely there: soft blush shades set of modern silhouette’. All her clothes blend in the surrounding in a gradation of nude hues and silver accessories.
- The whole ‘Dream within a Dream’ editorial is a magical optical illusion. The surrounding are straight out of a psychedelic dream, and the whole has a Cold War decadence feeling. The model is dressed in prints, the background is a patchwork of Pucci prints.
- ‘Tatler loves fashion’ advises you on what the section sponsor, Harrods, would like you to buy. The feature is split into 10 main trends, with the left page showing catwalk pictures and the right page suggesting how to recreate the look. It’s a fairly comprehensive summary of the springs/summer 09 season.
Glossy posse: Jacquetta Wheeler, Sally Storey, Pat Cavendish O’Neill (she keeps animals by the dozen as well as a husband), Coco Sumner and co.
Glossy stats: Volume 304, Number 3; March 2009; £3.80
Glossy bosses: Georgie Greig, Conde Nast
Glossy ads: Fendi, Dior, Gucci, Emporio Armani, Yves Saint Laurent, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Prada, Burberry, Rolex
Glossy rating: 3.5**
*According to HemiHelp, Hemiplegia is a condition in which have the body becomes paralysed due to damage to one of the hemispheres of the brain, usually before, during or after birth.
Lucie Goulet/Girl With a Satchel
**A glossy magazine worth spending your pocket money on?
1 - No... for the sake of your brain cells. Borrow a book instead.
2 - Perhaps not... preserve your self-esteem; buy a sweet treat.
3 - Possibly... worth a flick but not your lunch money.
4 - Yes... skim at your leisure then lend to a friend.
5 - Definitely... consider it a secure glossy investment.