I remember when I first starting looking at Vogue in the 1970’s. I was in junior high school, living in Miami (which was super sleepy, almost a hick town, honestly) and living on my mother’s seamstress salary. Obviously, I wasn’t shopping for anything in Vogue, but I was dreaming. And here’s the thing, it wasn’t all about the clothes. The 70’s was a pretty dismal time economically, gas lines, etc. Vogue was an escape, especially for a young girl who had a desire to “get to the big city.” And that big city would be New York, of course. Oh, and throw Paris in while you’re at it. There were plenty of sexy, cool images (think Helmut Newton) and there were exotic locations and SUPER skinny models and everyone seemed to be dating a glam rocker (like Bryan Ferry). It was cool, and far away and UNDERGROUND. Because there was an underground then. Word of mouth was it, back then. If you weren’t connected you were out.
True, we often look back on our life and think it was better back then... Everyone does it, and ultimately it was never much better and often it was worse. But if I was a fashion magazine I’d work toward making things a bit more surreal, a lot more out of reach and as underground as possible. This concept may fly in the face of current thinking — we are all citizen reporters, aren’t we? Everything is accessible, right? BUT, that’s what made those books interesting in the bad old days. Or, I guess fashion can just accept that their bibles are on the way out. I sure do hope not, ‘cause there are still a lot of dreamers out there. Little girls, and big girls.