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Vogue's editor-in-chief Anna Wintour has taken a moment to address the backlash surrounding the leaked cover image choice of Vice President-elect, Kamala Harris for their February 2021 print issue.
In an interview with The New York Times, the tenured fashion editor released a statement explaining her team's decision to go with the more casual photo of Harris dressed in a black blazer, black slacks, and a pair of black and white Chuck Taylor Converse sneakers. "Obviously, we have heard and understood the reaction to the print cover and I just want to reiterate that it was absolutely not our intention to, in any way, diminish the importance of the Vice-President-elect’s incredible victory," she says. "We want nothing but to celebrate Vice President-elect Harris's amazing victory and the important moment this is in America's history and particularly for women of color all over the world."
Wintour also brought up how both parties—Vogue's editorial staff and Harris' team—did not come to a collaborative decision prior to the revealing of the print cover image, one that Harris' squad was reportedly not expecting.
"There was no formal agreement about what the choice of the cover would be, and when the two images arrived at Vogue, all of us felt very, very strongly that the less formal portrait of the vice president-elect really reflected the moment that we were living in, which we were in the midst, as we still are, of the most appalling pandemic that is taking lives by the minute," she clarified. "We felt to reflect this tragic moment and global history, a much less formal picture, something that was very, very accessible and approachable and real, really reflected the hallmark of the Biden-Harris campaign and everything they're trying to, and, I'm sure, will achieve."
Although the initial, underwhelming image was leaked as the official print cover, Vogue revealed the more fitting image of Harris wearing a powder blue suit as a digital cover on Sunday morning (Jan. 10). Tyler Mitchell, the young Black photographer commissioned for the cover shoot, posted this version along with another. According to The Times, Vogue is considering printing the formal version as a second edition.
Meanwhile, many Harris supporters are pushing for every woman to dress casually like the vice president-elect in honor of her on Inauguration Day. "My cousin BeBe @bernadettemarsh sent this to me," wrote Ms. Tina Knowles-Lawson under her Instagram post. "She asked that every woman dress like this on Inauguration Day to honor Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. Jeans, blazer, Converse tennis shoes, pearls. I think it is a great idea! I will do it! What do y'all think ?"
The cover on the left (with the Chuck Ts) had no business being selected or even offered as an option.
This speaks volumes of how you view our Madam Vice President.
— Adrienne Lawrence (@AdrienneLaw) January 10, 2021
Tennis star Naomi Osaka is stepping into her luxury fashion bag as the newest ambassador for Louis Vuitton.
The U.S. Open champion will be featured in the fashion house's Spring 2021 campaign, photographed by the French brand’s Artistic Director of Women’s Collections, Nicolas Ghesquière. Donning a multi-colored dress with a small travel-friendly handbag, the Vogue January 2021 cover star serves vibrant athleisure with a splash of opulent swag.
“Aside from tennis, my most treasured passion is fashion, and there is no brand more iconic than Louis Vuitton,” she said in a press release. “It is such an honor to work with Nicolas—he’s a designer I admire so much and we share a mutual love of Japanese culture and style. To become a global brand ambassador is truly a dream come true for me.”
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Making statements by way of fashion was Osaka's mission in 2020, whether sweating on the tennis court or simply being expressive on social media. The Japanese-Haitian-American athlete is featured on Vogue's January 2021 cover, making her the second tennis player to be spotlighted by the 128-year-old publication after Serena Wiliams. Inside she talked about the importance of using her stardom to spread an important message.
"I always grew up with a little bit more Japanese heritage and culture, but I’m Black, and I live in America, and I personally didn’t think it was too far-fetched when I started talking about things that were happening here."
Last week’s Savage x Fenty Vol. 2 event had people talking for more than a few reasons. The show was mostly praised for the overall creative direction, celebrity cameos and performances, but the use of the song “Doom” (by London producer Coucou Chloe) caught backlash for its sample of a recitation of an Islamic Hadith, which is sacred to Muslims.
if you’re not a Muslim then dont tell us to not get offended.
For people still wondering what Rihanna did open this thread.
— ً (@lvstberry) October 5, 2020
Song that contains Islamic hadith was used in Rihanna's SavageXFenty show, which is disrespectful, and your non-muslim a$$ telling muslims if they should be offended or not? Is it crack? pic.twitter.com/a7wpy93Z7o
— Isla (@islaflow) October 4, 2020
i feel like islamaphobia is so normalised to the point where people are calling us dramatic for being mad when our religion gets disrespected? hadith are sacred words of the prophet, they’re used to guide muslims & are second to only the Quran. rihanna should know better.
— kirry🍷| limit (@ZARRYKISSY) October 4, 2020
Once aware of the mishap, Rihanna promptly apologized and thanked the Muslim community for “pointing out a huge oversight that was unintentionally offensive,” she wrote in a message posted to her Instagram Story on Tuesday (Oct. 6). “I would more importantly like to apologize to you for this honest, yet careless mistake.”
She continued, “We understand that we have hurt many of our Muslim brothers and sisters, and I’m incredibly disheartened by this! I do not play with any kind of disrespect toward God or any religion and the use of the song in our project was completely irresponsible! Moving forward we will make sure nothing like this ever happens again. Thank you for your forgiveness and understanding.”
Savage x Fenty Vol. 2 was the latest fashion installment in Rih’s growing empire. The show is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
Read Rihanna’s full apology below.