Vogue 100: A Century of Style

British fashion bible Vogue turns 100 this year! Dating back to its debut in 1916, the magazine has become a leading industry influencer. From the awe-inspiring editorials, to the ‘original supermodels’ and merging of celebrity with style, Vogue has constantly set the trends and also changed perceptions. With an exhibition coming to London’s National Portrait Gallery in February, we’re taking a look through the glossy archives to pick out some iconic front covers from the magazine house.

Blue Steel

Let’s start with the most recent issue. American Vogue has turned fiction into reality with its February cover; Zoolander 2 hits cinema screens next month, and they enlisted Derek for a blue steel pose alongside Penelope Cruz.

Eyes of the Model

Before the days of photoshop, fashion front covers were literal works of art; illustrations, lipstick close-ups, and non-specific muses.

The Original Supermodels

It was Vogue that announced and championed what we now know as ‘the original supermodels’. The likes of Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford and Linda Evangelista kick-started the long-legged phenomenon; making them household names outside the fashion circuit. They’ve since reunited to recreate many of their vintage group shots.

Here Come the Boys

Vogue is dominated by female models on the front cover, but this hasn’t stopped certain men stripping off for their ‘over the shoulder’ headshot. Robbie Williams bared all on the front cover in his ‘rock and roll’ heyday, alongside the iconic Gisele (who gave Geri’s Union Jack dress a run for its money!)


Vogue was a fashion pioneer for its involvement with all things ‘celebrity’. Acknowledging the style, fame and spirit of particular women in pop and film, they invited A-Listers to grace its covers. Lady Gaga stood out for her ‘Born This Way’ editorial, showcasing stripped back beauty compared to previous theatrics.

Defying Stereotypes

Lena Dunham has become a modern role model for her outspoken confidence regarding body shape and inner beauty. The fashion industry may have been used to other worldly supermodels gracing the cover, but Vogue shook things up last year by giving Lena her moment in the spotlight, to which she excelled.

Fashion Royalty

The late Princess Diana was a royal that never hid her love of fashion. From the elegant dresses to the exquisite jewellery, she became a designer’s muse, and made the cover of Vogue countless times.

The First Lady

The same goes for America’s ‘First Lady’ Michelle Obama. Counting the likes of Beyoncé as close friends, it’s no wonder Michelle has something to say on style outside of politics.

The New Reality

You could call him ‘outspoken’, but you have to give Kanye West credit for getting his own way. He was so adamant of securing his reality star wife Kim Kardashian a Vogue front cover that he arranged a meeting with editor Anna Wintour. Oh and of course he sneaked his way into the editorial too.

An Ode to Starman

This month music icon David Bowie tragically passed away. Known for his eccentric and gender defying egos, he became adored as much for fashion as his songs. Kate Moss was one of many stars that adored the original Starman, and she imitated his iconic lightning bolt face on a front cover.

Absolute Vintage

Want to know just how historic Vogue is? Look no further than this front cover from 1892!

Introducing Anna Wintour

So who keeps the American fashion house in order these days? None other than the formidable Anna Wintour! Loved (and sometimes feared) for her no-nonsense opinions, her critique on a collection is counted with the highest regard. ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ was allegedly based and inspired around Anna, and long may her reign continue.

The September Issue

One of the most famous fashion documentaries had an exclusive look into the Vogue offices. Tracking the creation and progress of its ‘September Issue’, Anna Wintour was famously frustrated with its front cover star Sienna Miller. Luckily the editorial won everyone over (Anna included), and at the time boasted the most amount of pages in the magazine’s history.

Grace Coddington

After nearly 30 years spent as creative director of American Vogue, the legendary red haired wonder that is Grace Coddington has stepped down. Beginning her career as a front cover model herself, she moved into creative editorial making, and was famed for her fairytale imagination and strong bonds with models and photographers worldwide.

Originally posted on daily.newlook.com


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