Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Vogue Curvy


Vogue Italia has added a new section to their website called "Vogue Curvy," dedicated to the celebration of plus-size bodies and fashion-- and by curvy, they don't mean girls like Lara Stone. Amen to that. They also started Vogue Black, which I can already tell I love because of the inclusion of an article titled "Love Your Natural Hair."

Both of the sites look excellent, and I'm going to dump a lot of spare time into browsing the contents. Michael Jackson is on the homepage of Vogue Black, and there's a gallery of Curvy Icons in Vogue Curvy. Seriously, I'm not going to get anything productive done today.

I have one teensy problem, though.

While I think that it goes without saying that a major player in the fashion industry acknowledging these two oft-marginalized groups is great, I'm a little disappointed at the idea that they have been sectioned off from the "regular" site. Why not just integrate all of these wonderful topics and photos into the main site? Are people who are Black and fashionable or curvy and fashionable so different from skinny White people that they can't all be adored in the same place?

Is it as bad to have Vogue Black and Vogue Curvy separate from the standard Vogue Italia page? Is this just another way of segregating people who aren't seen as the aesthetic ideal by today's media? Are you offended? Am I over-thinking?  Let's talk about it in the comments!

10 comments:

Zmaga said...

Hmm... you're right, it is kind of weird. I'm not sure what to think. I mean, Vogue Curvy should have it's own page, because it's not about the models and being skinny at all costs, but Vogue Black! What about Vogue for Asian population?! How would they call it?

amanda said...

Fuck me, Vogue is obnoxious.

They are so backward in their thinking -- and so self-righteous in their ignorance that it's maddening. I thought it was just Wintour that acted like a pompous ostrich with her head in the sand, but it appears that the whole Vogue family is infected. And I LIKED Vogue Italia for a minute there -- they were the ones that had the Black issue, no?

Honestly, the websites look fantastic, and true, the fact that they've actually relegated a tiny portion of the interwebs as a shrine to the "others" of fashion is something they should be praised for. But. I feel that if they really wanted to praise curvy women, black women, curvy black women, etc. they should include them in their magazines and websites proper. This does not change the fact that Vogue has a history of maligning those that fall out of their "obscenely skeletal teenager white girls" norm. Putting these websites, when taken in that context, makes the gorgeous women splashed across the computer screen look like a sideshow of freaks.

Vanessa said...

Zmaga: I see what you're saying, though personally I'd like to see fashion evolve so that we don't have to think about how certain models are special because of what side of "normal" their weight falls on. Basically, I would've loved to see all of these pages slipped in with the rest. Vogue Black is even more ludicrous, considering there are "straight-size" models that are Black already-- so why does all this info have to be put off to the side?

Amanda: I knew I could count on you to weigh in on this! Vogue Italia did do the Black issue-- which I think was pretty cool considering Black models have a hell of a time making it in fashion. Giving them the spotlight was a wonderful idea, but I agree, Vogue (and a lot of magazines) are really self-righteous about the way they go about speaking to difference. Sort've "Oh look how understanding we are!" but really just parading people as-- like you said-- a sideshow of freaks that they can make money off of because it looks like they're so hip and PC. Thanks so much for commenting because I had no idea what I wanted to SAY about this and you pretty much said it.

Kelly said...

I think it's pretty rude. Unless they have separate categories for every weight/race "Vogue Indian! Vogue Skinny! Vogue Middley Weight! Vogue Caucasian!" then sectioning off those two is really off-putting. It's like they don't think curvy or black women are pretty enough to "deserve" to be in the main Vogue, but they don't want to actually piss people off (i.e. lose their business) by ignoring them completely, so they just give them a separate site so they don't have to include them in everything else. Boo hiss.

I'm OK with different races/body types having their own separate magazines, etc. I think the way your body is made means you have a lot of different aesthetic concerns than other groups of people, so I don't mind black hair specific mags or things like that. But don't be one company that segregates two groups just because you don't really like them, but don't want to call yourself "the white and skinny magazine"

/rant

Nina (Femme Rationale) said...

hm...these women don't look "curvy"...they look normal. but i suppose baby steps are better than no steps.

Kimbirdy said...

I was thinking the same thing - how awesome that our society is beginning to embrace all body types in the media, but how effing ridiculous it is that it has to be separated from the rest of the media! Young girls are still being brainwashed by the thousands of magazines that portray only one type of image. Hopefully there will be integration of natural, healthy bodies in the media soon.

Vanessa said...

You're really all so insightful that I don't know what else to add-- I need to start having you write my posts for me :-P

Miss Peregrin said...

I'd love to see all these groups recognised in one mainstream magazine - because, lets face it, these types of women (and all the other types) are ALL the norm, so they should all be featured. But then, I'm not big on Vogue to being with. I prefer more "everyday" fashion magazines.

Samantha said...

Hi Vanessa! I just wanted to stop by and say that I completely agree with what you commented on yes and yes. Smart should not be seen as uncool... the makers of those ads should probably go about inspiring people to be creative and spontaneous and whatnot in a different way.

Vanessa said...

Miss Peregrin: I agree completely!

Samantha: Thanks! Yeah, I think one of the reasons that ads are just... not very good is that they could express what they're TRYING to express without encouraging being "stupid." I really do think it's different than what many of their ads show.

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