In writing the foreword to Vogue Paris Covers: 1920-2009 by Sonia Rachline, Carine Roitfeld poses a fascinating question: What is a good cover anyway? She then proceeds to answer her own question with her typical aplomb. I loved reading about Carine's thought process as she decides on a cover so I thought I would share her words with you along with a selection of my favorite covers she has created. Which are your favorite covers by Carine Roitfeld?
Foreword to Vogue Paris Covers: 1920-2009
Creating a cover is at once exciting and stressful. How can you be sure of your work — certain that you got it right? And what is a good cover anyway? Is it one that encourages people to buy the magazine? Or where the quality of the image has lasting interest? One or two things you learn from experience: the visual immediacy of the graphics, a clearly defined goal, a model who looks straight at the camera and holds the reader's gaze, a touch of luxury — all of these work to one's advantage. Gold, silver, red and pink lettering work well, whereas green does not. Humor is appealing, nudity less so. And yet those guidelines alone are no guarantee of commercial or artistic success, as we see if we look back through the magazine's archives, trawling through ninety years of graphic design. This is particularly true of Vogue, which has traditionally relied on a bold, even iconoclastic approach. So, what does that mean? For a visually attuned person like myself, a good cover is a pleasure to look at, and has an impact that one can return to without getting tired of it, but it is also underpinned by an idea, a way of looking at things that is entirely subjective. At the end of the day, there is only one recipe for success as I see it: a cover must be true to itself.
Editor-in-Chief, Vogue Paris
Cover images © 2014 CR Fashion Book and Condé Nast. All Rights Reserved.
Carine Roitfeld picks up the hippie chic thread running through the recent couture collections and ties it together in "Rare Gems" for fashion that is both flashback and futuristic. Shot by Michael Avedon for the December issue of Harper's Bazaar, "Rare Gems" stars Gigi Hadid and Gus Drake romping in Central Park in a colorful mixture of the season's best haute couture and jewelry selected by Carine from Saint Laurent, Chanel, Schiaparelli, Dior, Valentino, Maison Martin Margiela, Azzedine Alaïa, and Vionnet among others. Stephen Gan served as creative director for the whimsical editorial.
Carine Roitfeld images and text © 2014 Hearst Communications, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Carine Roitfeld declared fetish the theme for Pirelli's Calendar Girls 2015 and Steven Meisel and twelve of the world's most beautiful women submitted to her wishes… As one might anticipate, the result is sexy, fun, and loaded with latex.
When asked about her vision for the 2015 Pirelli Calendar, Carine Roitfeld shared: "We decided to abandon the idea of the seasons and ended up taking the photos just for the pleasure of taking them. We tried to convey an idea of fashion in the pictures by focusing on details that would make the models look even sexier than their bodies alone could do. We would not be content just to show naked girls… As a material, latex is a recurrent element in the shots: it’s beautiful, it's versatile, and it has a sheen that makes it alluring… All of them [the models] knew that Steven would be able to transform them, to make them stunningly beautiful, to portray nudity with no trace of vulgarity… Sometimes, to show a bit of fashion is even more sexy than to be totally naked. I think that is the point of this calendar."
To celebrate the launch of Pirelli's Calendar Girls 2015, an exhibit titled "Form and Desire — The Pirelli Calendar Collection" opened at the Palazzo Reale in Milan, a retrospective of more than 200 photographs culled from the Pirelli archives on display through 19 February 2015.
Here are the twelve lovelies that made Carine Roitfeld's list for 2015:
Miss January: Adriana Lima
Miss February: Natalia Vodianova
Miss March: Joan Smalls
Miss April: Candice Huffine
Miss May: Carolyn Murphy
Miss June: Anna Ewers
Miss July: Cameron Russell
Miss August: Sasha Luss
Miss September: Karen Elson
Miss October: Isabeli Fontana
Miss November: Gigi Hadid
Miss December: Raquel Zimmerman
Pirelli Calendar images © 2014 Pirelli. All Rights Reserved.
Julia Restoin-Roitfeld toasted her 34th birthday with a bevy of glamorous friends at the dinner to launch the Solid & Striped x Poppy Delevingne collection at The Happiest Hour in New York. Among those on hand to celebrate were Karen Elson, Poppy Delevingne, Eugenie Niarchos, Joan Smalls, Giovanna Battaglia, Jessica Hart, Alexa Chung, Donald Robertson, Harley Viera-Newton, Tom Van Dorpe, Elyse Taylor, and Alexia Niedzielski.
Julia Restoin-Roitfeld et al photos © 2014 Abaca. Courtesy of Pure People and twitter.com/bat_gio.