Saturday 1 October 2022 10:48 PM Edward Enniful wants to make Vogue 'genderless', but will it pass Anna Wintour? trends now

Saturday 1 October 2022 10:48 PM Edward Enniful wants to make Vogue 'genderless', but will it pass Anna Wintour? trends now
Saturday 1 October 2022 10:48 PM Edward Enniful wants to make Vogue 'genderless', but will it pass Anna Wintour? trends now

Saturday 1 October 2022 10:48 PM Edward Enniful wants to make Vogue 'genderless', but will it pass Anna Wintour? trends now

The rare smile that flashed across the face of legendary American Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour at Victoria Beckham’s Paris fashion show on Friday was too remarkable to go unnoticed. That it was directed at the man who sat just a few seats away, British Vogue’s Editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful, was even more intriguing.

For while Ms Wintour must have hoped that the gesture would convey a sense of unity, behind the glossy pages of the fashion bible is a growing froideur between the magazine’s grand dame and her former protégé, the first black and openly gay man to get the top job.

Indeed, playing out in the shadows is what one magazine insider has described as ‘a fight not only for the crown of Vogue but for the very heart and soul of the magazine itself’.

Enninful is driving the most radical and controversial changes in the magazine’s 130-year-old history: an audacious bid to make Vogue more diverse and even ‘genderless’ – a departure from its traditional female base

Enninful is driving the most radical and controversial changes in the magazine’s 130-year-old history: an audacious bid to make Vogue more diverse and even ‘genderless’ – a departure from its traditional female base

At the centre of it all is Enninful himself, who is driving the most radical and controversial changes in the magazine’s 130-year-old history: an audacious bid to make Vogue more diverse and even ‘genderless’ – a departure from its traditional female base.

The latest decision to raise stylishly bushy eyebrows was the inclusion of Oscar-nominated actor Timothée Chalamet on the latest cover, making him British Vogue’s first male cover star. Enninful is said to be ‘keen’ to land Ncuti Gatwa, the first black Doctor in Doctor Who and star of Netflix’s Sex Education, as his next cover star.

‘He wants to appeal to everyone, not just women,’ a source confided to The Mail on Sunday. ‘To him, the future is a genderless, multicultural Vogue that appeals to everyone and excludes no one. Gay men have always bought the magazine but he wants to attract everyone and reach out to an audience who would not traditionally buy a women’s fashion magazine.’

What that means for those faithful to Vogue’s female-led brand of high fashion remains to be seen. As one observer put it: ‘At its heart, Vogue represents glamour and aspiration for women. If you stop it being a women’s magazine, you destroy its soul.’

But at the moment, it seems there is little that can slow Enninful. Since the 50-year-old, who arrived in the UK from Ghana aged 13, took over the helm of British Vogue five years ago, there has been constant speculation that he is being lined up to take over Wintour’s job as Editor-in-chief of American Vogue and Global Chief Content Officer of the magazine’s publisher, Conde Nast.

Since the 50-year-old, who arrived in the UK from Ghana aged 13, took over the helm of British Vogue five years ago, there has been constant speculation that he is being lined up to take over Wintour’s job as Editor-in-chief of American Vogue and Global Chief Content Officer of the magazine’s publisher, Conde Nast

Since the 50-year-old, who arrived in the UK from Ghana aged 13, took over the helm of British Vogue five years ago, there has been constant speculation that he is being lined up to take over Wintour’s job as Editor-in-chief of American Vogue and Global Chief Content Officer of the magazine’s publisher, Conde Nast

A source said: ‘There have been plenty of pretenders to the throne but Edward considers himself her natural successor and he is the only person who appears to be a real threat.’

Yet even in the famously waspish world of fashion he has been branded a ‘diva’, and has earned himself the deliciously catty soubriquet ‘Edward Enninfulofhimself’.

Also bitchily referred to as the ‘Queen Mother’, he is said to have much in common with his mentor. One US outlet has alleged he has ‘assistants [who] lead him around through meetings and carry his glasses and eye drops and help apply them’.

His admirers say that no one ever calls him the ‘Queen Mother’ and that he needs eyedrops because his eyesight is so bad it borders on being a disability.

Reports also suggest he waves off colleagues with simple requests by asking them to ‘call Darnell’ [his powerful agent, Darnell Strom].

And his differences with the formidable Wintour – whose famously demanding personality has earned her the nickname ‘Nuclear Wintour’ – suggest he is made of stern stuff.

In the US, reports of the growing rift between the magazine empire’s two most influential editors burst into the open this week with several outlets seemingly ‘briefed’ about the simmering tensions.

‘Anna Wintour’s Feud With Her Protege Is Turning Conde Nasty’ read one headline in an article which alleged that Enninful is ‘apparently gunning for the Iron Lady of Gloss’s plum job’ and has told associates he ‘believes he can do a better job than Wintour atop the Vogue brand’.

The publication speculated Wintour may try to ‘appease’ Enninful, who has spent recent

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