I could take or leave Carine Roitfeld as a magazine editor or style guru, but as a fashion industry insider and gossip? She’s great. Roitfeld recently chatted with the Times of London about leaving Vogue, starting her own magazine (CR Fashion Book), style rules and what she thinks of royal style, specifically for the Princess of Wales and Queen Camilla. I enjoyed this interview probably more than I should – she’s very quotable.
She started smoking at the age of 64: “I like it. It’s better than smoking at 20, you know? I started doing tattoos at 68. I have tattoos on my fingers, all the first initials of people I love, dead or alive. And I have a piercing here that I didn’t before, so I keep young, you know? I’m more fun than I was before. And I smoke. My children say stop. I say give me a break.”
How she decorated her new Paris apartment: “Black. Everything is black. The ceiling is beautiful, it’s black too. Black floor, black curtains. All the doors are mirrored with gold, ’ow you say? A bit like Chanel. A lot of pictures of my work, some art that I like. Mostly Seventies. And black.” She eats dinner in bed, “even Indian food, very spicy and bad smell after”, and says she feels 18 years old.
On Kim Kardashian: “No one wants even now to give Kim Kardashian outfits. Why? Because people think she was cheesy, reality person, but she is more than nice and so well educated, and I like her. The mother I think is hilarious and very smart, and I’ve met all the sisters, but mostly my favourite will be Kim.”
The dominance of TikTokkers and influencers in fashion these days: “I understand it’s very important for sales — if Chiara Ferragni [the Italian influencer] wears a dress you sell millions — but there are too many.”
A little Anna Wintour story: Nor is she impressed by the fact that at a dinner last month at the Élysée Palace to celebrate French fashion, President Macron sat next to Anna Wintour. Roitfeld says it was seen by the French as an insult. “She’s important, but if you want to celebrate French fashion you don’t invite Anna Wintour. She still has this power and I don’t understand why. Every time I do a TV show they say, ‘You are the French Anna Wintour,’ and I say, ‘I’m not.’ She is more in politics than me, I’m in fashion. I respect her work very much, and she’s a very good mum, which is important to me, but I’m not like her. I’m totally different. I don’t like to be compared to Anna Wintour.”
Her personal style: Black is generally held to be unforgiving, especially as you get older, but 90 per cent of her wardrobe is black (“I think black makes me beautiful”). The only colour is a smattering of khaki and her shoes, the only print is leopard, and there’s surprisingly little of any of it for a fashion editor: she has five coats, eight jackets, 10 or 15 skirts, a handful of black sweaters. Mainly, though, being stylish at 69 is about having neat nails, clean hair, black mascara and matching lingerie.
On Princess Kate: She once said she’d like the Princess of Wales to be a bit more rock’n’roll but has evidently thought better of it. Today she praises her as beautiful but in a classic way, a woman who dresses well for her body shape and champions British design. She’s very polished, she adds thoughtfully, in fact a bit too polished for her taste … So how would she style her, then? “Black,” she says firmly. “More black. A lot of black. She only wear black at the funeral, maybe it’s a law in the royal family, but I would dress her more in black. Black eyeliner. More Saint Laurent, more Chanel, more French.”
On Queen Camilla’s style: “Ouf, that’s difficult. I think she would be more chic in pant suits rather than long gowns because you don’t believe her. She’s a woman who likes to ride horses, to go in nature. A pant suit would be fantastic on her. Tell ’er, if you know ’er.”
[From The Times]
I think Camilla prefers dresses because she thinks she has nice legs, and because the cut of her customized dresses hides the fact that she’s gained weight in her midsection. It happens to most women and I’m not criticizing Camilla – she has every right to wear what makes her feel comfortable. I actually like Cam’s housedresses and admire the way she’s found some flattering silhouettes. But that’s why she doesn’t wear pantsuits. As for Kate… I don’t actually think Kate looks all that great in black? Kate looks good in bright canary yellow, burgundy and any kind of purple-reds (but not yellow-reds). And Kate’s style is all over the place these days because she doesn’t know who she’s trying to cosplay at any given moment.
A few more things… I think most designers want to dress Kim Kardashian at this point? She’s doing collabs and campaigns with Fendi and Balenciaga, every designer would love for Kim to go to their runway show, etc. As I get older, most of my wardrobe is black as well, but I mix it up with navy and grey. That’s about 95% of my wardrobe.
Photos courtesy of Cover Images.
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