Though Grace Coddington is more of a behind-the-scenes person–her job requires it and she describes herself as shy and reserved (in high school Coddington’s parents arranged for her to eat at a quiet cafe so she “didn’t have to talk to anyone”)–when The September Issue made her a star and forced her to open up while doing press for the doc, she figured “maybe I had a bigger story to share.”
And we’re so glad she did because Coddington’s life story is not only funny and poignant, blunt and inspiring, but it’s also an insider’s history of the fashion industry and how it’s changed from the 1950s to today. Starting her career as a model in the ’50s and becoming an editor at British Vogue in the ’60s before moving on to American Vogue in the ’80s–Coddington has truly seen it all.
Here’s what we learned, in Coddington’s own words.
Yes, she talked about cats a lot (the one person she’d secretly wish to see on the cover of Vogue? Pumpkin.). She also fielded truly bizarre questions like, “If you only had enough time to save one person from a burning building, would you save Anna or your cat?” and “Can I braid your hair?” She answered both.
To promote her new memoirs, Grace Coddington will be taking over Vogue Magazine’s twitter (@voguemagazine) today from noon until 1 p.m. EST.
She’ll answer fans’ burning questions about cat psychics (yes she uses one), Vogue, her modeling career and maybe even Anna Wintour. (We assume Coddington’s assistant Stella Greenspan will be the one tweeting Coddington’s answers as Coddington, in her book, outs herself as a technophone who only reads her emails once they’re printed out.)
Until we get our hands on Grace Coddington’s new memoir (Leah’s currently reading it), we’ll settle for poring over the press surrounding the book, for which she says she was “media trained,” but still lets out some good stuff.
She spoke to the New York Times and the Telegraph about the book, her cats, Anna Wintour, her legion of adoring fans post- The September Issue, her friend Nicolas Ghesquiere, who should play her in a movie and why young designers need to have “a few things going wrong in their life.” Read on to obsess over her with us: