When a top-tier editor leaves Vogue, it's big news (read: top-tier editors almost never leave Vogue), but when two depart at the same time, it's nearly unfathomable. In September, that's exactly what happened: Former senior market editor Meredith Melling Burke resigned after 16 years at the magazine, and former bookings editor Valerie Boster, who had been at Vogue for 10 years, left as well.
The duo made it known that they were departing in order to start a then-undisclosed business venture, and now Burke and Boster are debuting their new company, just in time for New York Fashion Week. After launching on Twitter recently and unveiling a new website last week, WWD is reporting that La Marque (which means "the brand" in French), the duo's new fashion consultancy, is officially open for business.
Moving away from their background in editorial to focus on marketing, Burke and Boster are now the co-founders of the full-service branding and consulting agency, and they even have secured their first group of clients, which includes Theory. To briefly explain the new venture, Boster told WWD, “We’re focused on branding, positioning and messaging, giving companies a brand narrative and keeping that message consistent and broadcasting it across numerous channels.”
According to La Marque's website, a selection of the services the duo offers includes creative/design direction, casting, editorial content and social media strategy, partnerships/collaborations and styling. Burke worked closely with the Fashion Fund finalists during her years at Vogue, so providing brands with advice about their positioning within the marketplace has become one of her specialties.
To answer the lingering question as to why they left Vogue, the pair credits the evolution of the fashion industry, especially in the realms of digital and e-commerce. “Retail’s changing. Publishing’s changing. And so we felt it was a good time for us to capitalize on that intersection of content and commerce, where our voice could be an asset in that arena. Brands now more than ever have much more power to serve their product and reach consumers in a number of different ways beyond traditional media,” Boster told WWD.
This looks like a classic case of the old school vs. the new school to us, and we can't wait to see what Burke and Boster bring to the industry with their new agency -- as well as with what Vogue has taught them. Watch this space.