Belfast Telegraph

Diversity, Bowie, red... we decode Vogue’s latest cover

 

This week, the world got its first taste of #NewVogue as Edward Enninful's debut cover as editor - the first black, gay man to hold the position - was revealed. So exactly what's in Vogue, and what does it tell us about the state of the world right now? Here's what we've gleaned so far. By Emma McCarthy.

Red ahead

While the rest of the planet is still safely cocooned in their millennial pink-washed bubble, Vogue has moved on. It's all about tomato red now. The new hue, scheduled for an imminent takeover of our social media feeds, high streets and general consciousness, has been tipped as 2018's answer to the sugary shade after it was given pride of place as the title font colour. If you have any hope of staying in Vogue, we suggest deleting all traces of your former millennial pink life and Instagramming something tomato-based, like a scarlet puffer or a penne puttanesca. Or at least make like Adwoa Aboah and invest in a tomato-red lipstick. Immediately.

Model behaviour

Aboah may be up against Kaia Gerber, Winnie Harlow and Bella and Gigi Hadid for the title for Model of the Year at December's British Fashion Awards but Enninful has already crowned his winner. Side-stepping established modelling royalty, including BFF Naomi Campbell, in favour of fellow west Londoner Aboah, Enninful's choice of cover star is a striking, if not entirely surprising, one. After all, they were both raised in Ladbroke Grove. And crucially, like Enninful, Aboah is no stranger to breaking boundaries, having talked openly about her past problems with depression, addiction and attempted suicide and provided a feminist role model as the founder of mental health initiative Gurls Talk. "There is this new-found love and space for activism within fashion," says the cover girl in the accompanying interview, adding "I feel part of something big."

Make Britain great again

In a year where Great Britain has become a byword for Brexit, Vogue's cover line stands as a reminder of exactly what is great about Britain. Much like Trump's mission to Make America Great Again - but with decidedly better PR and approach to social media - the Ghanaian-born editor's declaration suggests a new breed of patriotism; one which seeks to celebrate our unique and diverse range of creative talent and stop us obsessing about the escalating cost of Marmite. This celebration of melting-pot Britain is part of a wider trend - shout out to high street retailer Jigsaw's latest campaign and its pro-immigration manifesto.

Meet the gang

Keen to assert that his clique is the coolest in town, Enninful's starring cast reads like a roll-call of dream dinner party guests. Along with his inner circle - see Naomi Campbell, Jourdan Dunn and Kate Moss - the list also includes designers (Christopher Bailey, John Galliano), authors (Zadie Smith, Salman Rushdie), musicians (Skepta) and Hollywood's hottest property (Letitia Wright, Millie Bobby Brown). Alongside, of course, London Mayor Sadiq Khan.

Get into the groove

The Nineties may still reign supreme as far as the high street is concerned but you may want to consider trading in your Fila for some flares after you've seen Aboah's printed kaftan and matching turban combo (left), styled by Enninful. The look, from Marc Jacobs' spring/summer 18 collection - the model is also the face of Marc Jacobs' current beauty campaign - was finished off with some stonking great statement earrings which will no doubt provide Christmas party dressing inspo in offices across the UK.

Is there Life on Mars?

In a heartfelt remembrance of the late, great David Bowie, penned shortly after his death last year, Enninful described the Brixton-born starman as his "idol", adding that "consistently throughout my career he has been a go-to reference point". So of course his Vogue debut was no exception. Featuring striking electric blue eye make-up, bleached eyebrows and glossy lips, the look is pure Life On Mars circa 1973. Indeed, the cover make-up artist of choice was also a long-time fan. As the obituary confirms: "I always loved the make-up - Pat McGrath and I grew up loving Bowie together."

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