Ever since Franca Sozzani famously called fashion bloggers a viral epidemic on her own blog, the Italian Vogue editor has been taking heat. But that hasn’t stopped her from continuing to voice her opinions, resulting, perhaps ironically, in a bevy of new blog followers and sky-rocketing sales of her magazine. Nothing like a bit of controversy to pump up the numbers. WWD recently caught up with the fashion rogue to discuss how she’s capitalized on digital media and her take on the naysayers (essentially, “They can go to hell“). More colorful quotes after the jump.
On the controversial “Black” and “Curvy” features of vogue.it: “In ‘Curvy,’ they are superhappy with their sizes. We help them dress fashionably. We say: It’s pointless for you to buy leggings, take this because this will look good on you. We help them choose. We don’t talk about diets because they don’t want to be on a diet, but it’s not a ghetto. Why should these women slim down? Many of the women who have a few extra kilos are especially beautiful and also more feminine.”
On airbrushing and anorexia: “We have this damn Photoshop, where 14-year-old girls are polished, they take away the stomach, the sides and they all seem thinner. And why shouldn’t one have wrinkles? I don’t understand — there must be a moment when one has to have something. There are few photographers who don’t use Photoshop, very few. But you can’t say fashion is the cause of anorexia — what about Twiggy in the Sixties? There were anorexics already, were they so because of Twiggy? Or Jean Shrimpton? There are psychological problems.”
On the negative backlash to her comments: “I respond, ‘They can go to hell.’ I say that I’m sick and tired and I won’t write my blog anymore, then they say, ‘Oh, continue. I write what I think and we can’t all agree; if we all did, where would controversy be? If there is no controversy, there is no opinion […] I don’t need to prove anything to anyone, because I’ve been head of a magazine for 22 years, and I find that I can express my ideas the way I want to.”
On her relationship with Anna Wintour:
On the new fashion show experience: “I do get really bored at shows. Shows must be creative, without becoming ridiculous, otherwise a showroom presentation is best. And also I’m bored with what has emerged around the shows. It’s all these photographers, all these blogs, these magazines, you don’t even know who they all are. You get stopped and if you don’t stop you are rude, they must photograph you to end up who knows where. I don’t know — I feel it’s a pointless distraction.”
On the authenticity of bloggers: “… I said enough with all these blogs, because it’s the quantity, anyone can take a photo, put it on a blog, say I like it, I don’t like it. Anyone can do a blog. I would rather people found their own style. I find Scott Schuman is a genius, because he created The Sartorialist, and he created a concept. After him, how many were born? Millions, but he remains.”