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Naomi Campbell Called ‘Angry Person’ in Weird, Combative Interview with the UK’s Channel 4

Image: WENN

Image: WENN

A few days ago, Naomi Campbell was tasked with defending both herself and the growing campaign demanding more runway diversity in a bizarre, combative interview with UK broadcaster Channel 4 News. 

Most of the time, it's refreshing to see a journalist at a major network challenge a big name subject, but in this case, the program's host seemed determined to get a rise out of Campbell.

It started with the opening question, which insinuated that the supermodel's success delegitimizes her claims that the fashion industry isn't racially inclusive:

Channel 4: Are you essentially accusing the industry you've done very well in, of being racist?

Naomi Campbell: No, I'm saying the act of not choosing models of color is racist. We're not calling them racist, we're saying the act is racist. And I'm also saying that they may not intentionally know, but they do choose. They hire casting directors, they hire stylists — now they are the ones that choose the models, not so much the designer anymore. So it's not necessarily the designer, but it does affect their house and their brand.

Then this exchange:

C4: You're a world famous supermodel. Why can't you go up to… Victoria Beckham —

NC: Who says I haven't?

C4: What does Victoria Beckham say?

NC: I haven't gone up to Victoria Beckham. But I have gone up to designers I am friendly with and said, "Hey, why are you not using more models of color?"

C4: And what do they say? Your friends?

NC: "We want to, you're right, you're right." But it doesn't happen. 

Asked whether she is particularly invested in how London Fashion Week handles diversity, given her own background as a Brit, Cambell deflects: "I'm not pointing at one country, we're pointing at the fashion industry as whole."

The exchange continues:

C4: But you're naming Alexander McQueen, you're naming Mulberry. You've named Victoria Beckham. 

NC: Yes, because they haven't used any models of color!

The interviewer doesn't back off, asking the supermodel whether being involved with the "blood diamonds" controversy might discredit her current campaign:

NC: I don't care what people think about me, they're allowed to have their opinion about me. But what they cannot fault me on is my job. And this is my business — fashion — this is what I'm in, and this is what I see. 

C4: You have a reputation, rightly or wrongly, for being quite an angry person. 

NC: I'm not here to talk about me, I'm here to talk about Balance Diversity. So I think I will finish here as I need to get to my set and finish my TV show. 

C4: Let me finish my question. I just wondered if there's a good anger and a bad anger, and if this is actually a good anger to have. 

NC: I'm not angry. And I don't like the thing of "the angry black woman" either. This is not what this is about. You asked to interview me because we've done very nice interviews in America. And you want to know what it's all about. We are passionate. And feeling passionate about something doesn't mean you have to be angry. 

The full interview:

RelatedAndré Leon Talley: ‘It’s Not the Designer That’s Racist, It’s the System That’s Racist’

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Link Buzz: Kate Moss Confirmed for Playboy; Diversity Did Not Improve Much at NYFW This Season

Image: Spiller/WENN.com

Image: Spiller/WENN.com

  • Kate Moss will appear on the cover of Playboy's June 2014 Issue, commemorating the publication's 60th anniversary — topless or not topless, only time will tell. [Fashionologie]
     
  • Blake Lively looked phenomenal at the Gucci show, which is presumably a requirement of sitting front row next to Anna Wintour. [FabSugar]
     
  • London Fashion Week beauty trends. Don't you want to want to want to? [BellaSugar]
     
  • "11 Cult Nail Polish Shades To Try Before You Die." Or, how to live life to the fullest. [SheFinds]
     
  • The latest New York Fashion Week runway diversity count does not show much improvement over last season: "The problem is that while there might have been nominally more models of color this season than last, all of the same models were booking the shows." [Jezebel]
     
  • Find out how Bentley (yes, the car company) may have finneagled its way into your social streams this fashion week. [BoF]

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If Your Inner Child Loves Bandage Dresses, She’ll Love the New Hervé Léger by Max Azria Barbie Doll

Image: BCBGMAXAZRIAGROUP

Image: BCBGMAXAZRIAGROUP

Like many other little girls, I went through a Barbie phase. My two ladies (and their generically attractive shared beau, Ken) lived, loved and lost their hair in an elaborately decorated house fashioned out of a cabinet shelf in my bedroom. I don't remember their names or how they occupied their time (with clothes or work or boys?), but I doubt they lived anything but a relatively modest life of egg breakfasts and romantic walks on the carpeting. For sure, their existence would have had little in common with the high-shine glamour afforded to the newest member of the Barbie family, who fills her nights with red carpet premieres and little jaunts down the runway, all while dressed in custom-designed Hervé Léger by Max Azria bandage dresses, gladiator boots and harness belts. 

Set to retail for $150 at Hervé Léger boutiques, select Neiman Marcus stores and online at BarbieCollector.com (the website also features dolls wearing outfits designed by The Blonds, Stephen Burrows, Coach and Trina Turk), the Hervé Léger doll is available with two looks, both constructed of the same materials (and manufactured in the same factory) used to produce the main collection. Conceived for the so-called "Adult Collector," life-sized versions of each one of Barbie's fashion item will also be available through the Hervé Léger by Max Azria collection.

All images courtesy BCBGMAXAZRIAGROUP

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Dion Lee Takes on New York Fashion Week

dion-lee-spring-2014

Dion Lee might just be responsible for changing the landscape of Australian fashion. His daringly futuristic designs render him incongruous with words like ‘floaty’ and ‘feminine’ that are often thought to be an intrinsic part of local design’s DNA. They’ve also made Lee our most valuable export, both financially and in terms of things to brag about at happy hour.  

Accordingly, Dion Lee’s New York Fashion Week debut last week was probably watched with a sort of nervous smugness on the part of most Australians present. Just how awesome would New York find our beloved fashion wunderkind? How thrilled would they be to shake his hand and offer him a seat at the already crowded table of local talent?

Perhaps as a way of making himself more approachable (Lee’s experimental approach to textiles and silhouettes can often mark him as an outsider), the designer’s collection was relatively pared back for a show that began with a laser light performance.

The first looks were monochromatic – sleek trousers and pencil skirts paired with tailored blazers and leather bustiers. But after that quick introduction, he ventured into a sci-fi cross-hatching pattern and clothes that were more like wearable art. The emphasis still, though, being on ‘wearable.’ The most impressive were tops made from strips of fabric that snaked bondage-like around the model’s body and neck, and a skirt that fused panels of the neoprene (there’s that glamourised wetsuit fabric again) backing. Gauzy fabrics kept things well clear of Blade Runner territory.

First impressions count at fashion week, and Dion Lee could hardly have made a better one. Australia is probably justified in feeling a little smug. 

Image: Dion Lee's Facebook

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Saint Laurent Music Project: Hedi Slimane Taps B.B. King, Jerry Lee Lewis and Chuck Berry for New Ads

Hedi Slimane's latest photographs for the Saint Laurent Music Project, of rock and blues legends B.B. King, Jerry Lee Lewis and Chuck Berry, have just been released. Previous subjects for the photo series included Courtney Love, Marilyn Manson, Daft Punk and Kim Gordon, whose contributions to popular music occured more recently than the latest crop of campaign stars. With his newest ads, Slimane seems to be expanding the label's connection to music and musicians beyond the leather-trousered badassery of contemporary rock 'n' roll, to the genre's legendary beginnings — to its soul. Whether or not that's an interesting and/or appropriate direction for Saint Laurent Paris … we'll have to see. 

Chuck Berry in Saint Louis, Missouri on September 7th, 2013 / Image: YSL

Chuck Berry in Saint Louis, Missouri on September 7th, 2013 / Image: YSL

Jerry Lee Lewis in Nesbit Mississippi on August 15th, 2013 / Image: YSL

Jerry Lee Lewis in Nesbit Mississippi on August 15th, 2013 / Image: YSL

Image: YSL

BB King in Las Vegas on September 8th, 2013 / Image: YSL

Related: Hedi Slimane’s Directorial Debut for Saint Laurent is Lovely [Video]

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For the Second Month in a Row (But This Time for the Cover), Terry Richardson Photographs Miley Cyrus for Harper’s Bazaar

Image: Terry Richardson for Harper’s BAZAAR

Image: Terry Richardson for Harper’s BAZAAR

Miley Cyrus is on the cover of Harper's Bazaar's October Issue, proving that sometimes you get what you ask for, especially if you are the notoriously twerky daughter of famed country singer Billy Ray Cyrus. Photographed by Terry Richardson, Cyrus wears Burberry Prorsum, bright red stick-on nails and a guarded expression. 

The pop star appeared inside the Hearst publication's September issue last month (covered by Sarah Jessica Parker), for an editorial spread also shot by Richardson. In the accompanying video interview, Cyrus straight up asks executive editor Laura Brown, "Where's my cover?"

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