The question of who does or does not use a stylist, or who lies about it, is a frequent debate in the fashion world. Recently, blogger/model Emily Sandberg directed fire from her blog, supermodelblogger, toward the practice of putting celebs on magazine covers with a post titled “Sarah Jessica Parker–Not A Style Icon”, in which she claims Parker’s style is the work of “a small army of people”, including Pat Field, not due to good personal style. And if you thought this was just idle chatter from fashion blogosphere, think again: the Daily News‘ gossip column Gatecrasher led with this story today.
Opening with a picture of the August Vogue cover, the post asks,
“How much money do you think the studios paid to put Sarah Jessica Parker on the cover of Vogue? I’ll tell you why I ask, I’d like to know how little Vogue is willing to give Sarah Jessica Parker the credit that Patricia Field deserves. Sarah Jessica Parker is not the fashion icon Anna Wintour and all the other fashion business heads want you to believe.”
She includes this admittedly bad photo of SJP from “when she made her own fashion choices,” which honestly could happen to anyone (especially in the 80s), and then mentions the “failure” of Parker’s $38 million 2004 contract with the Gap which she says cost the brand million of dollars. However, her points have serious flaws: Parker was their campaign model for a few seasons, not their artistic director, as Sandberg says. Not to mention that bit about movie studios paying for a cover, a bold and completely unfounded accusation.
Sandberg’s point is that magazines should put models on magazine covers rather than “chase US Weekly dollars” by using celebrities, which she says presents a false face to the public since many celebrities use stylists. Parts of this are valid–I know I’d love to see more models covering glossies, and it is true that stylists help out celebrities more often than not. But not every celebrity use a stylist, and Parker has said she only uses stylists like Field for red carpet appearances (and since when was using a stylist such a terrible thing in the first place?).As for the “army of people” she supposedly employs…well, she’s a multi-million dollar actress with three kids, Broadway appearances, a just-ended design consulting position and a new movie coming out. Of course she has help! She mentions a part-time nanny in her Vogue article and has spoken of her admiration for her hairdresser, Serge Normant.
While Sandberg’s frustration is understandable, she’s directing it at the wrong person with incorrect information. Everyone’s entitled to rant, but this one seems a bit misdirected. What do you think?