Photos from the after-party are available at www.washingtonlife.com.
Click here to see the movie trailer!
Last night’s E Street Cinema screening of the new behind-the-scenes documentary about Vogue magazine, “The September Issue,” and the after-party at the W Hotel were the places to be for anyone in DC with an interest in fashion. I’m grateful to my friend Jayne Sandman for squeezing me in at the last minute (I’d only heard about the screening and after party a few days before). There was just enough time to catch up with Gwen Holliday, Johnny Wright, Ashley Taylor, Lindsay Craig, Carol Joynt, and Hilary Rosen before the movie started and I was lucky enough to snag an open seat next to Tracy Bernstein. Centering around Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour and the production of the highly anticipated and coveted September issue of American Vogue, the film offers a – fly on the wall – glimpse into the world of high fashion: its editors, photographers, models, and designers. While Wintour comes across as an icy perfectionist, an unlikely heroine emerges from the film in the form of Creative Director Grace Coddington, below left, who started working at Vogue the same day as Wintour 20 years ago.
Hailed as the greatest fashion stylist alive, Coddington’s prodigious gifts are apparent up on the screen. “September Issue” director Cutler has said, “Every billboard, fashion magazine spread, every advertisement we see today has been influenced by Grace Coddington.” Her 1st book – Grace: Thirty Years of Fashion at Vogue – should be on every model/designer/photographer’s short list – even though Amazon is selling the hardcover for $400. The dramatic action of the film comes from the tension between the two powerhouses. Throughout the film, Wintour and Coddington are at odds over editorial content and we watch as the two women tacitly battle for control over what stays and what goes in the magazine.
As the September issue gets closer to being finalized, more of Coddington’s editorials get axed. The climax of the film, so to speak, is watching the fallout from a near disastrous cover photo spread of the actress Sienna Miller by Mario Testino, which then gets trumped by the reinstatement of Coddington’s once canned photo spreads. The film is worth seeing just to watch the photographers – Patrick Demarchelier, David Sims, and Testino – work their magic. After the screening most of the audience made their way over to the W Hotel to join a hundred, or so, others for a party hosted by GILT Groupe founders Alexandra Wilkis Wilson and Alexis Maybank.
The fashion conscious crowd included Sharon Dougherty, Anais deViel Castel, Carolina Furukrona, Amy Baier, Jamie Dorros, Darcy Jones, Nat Fogg, Susanna Quinn, Sassy “Sassanova” Jacobs, Katie Rost, Ellen Chube, Pamela Sorensen, Ebs Burnough, Elizabeth Thorp, Mona Sutphen, Tina D’Souza and David Sutphen, Will Thomas and Andrew Noyes, Mary Barth, Joelle Myers, Dondi Dahlgard, Alicia deForest, Holidae Hayes, Omar Popal, Paul Wharton, Lindsay Czarniak, Matt Landsberg, Shelly Galli, Amanda Polk, and Nicki Kalokerinos. Author on the verge of stardom, Walker Lamond, was there promoting his October release: “Rules for My Unborn Son.” A nice departing gift was created by an on-site photographer – a photo keepsake superimposed with the Vogue logo so that each person went home with his or her face on the “cover” of Vogue magazine. A really nice touch!