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The Times They Are a-Changin'
Ecce Homo? Prima Donna!
Fashion Film Festival Milano
SUZY MENKES goes DIGITAL. For the past 30 years, Suzy Menkes - a self-described fashion maximalist -  was synonymous with the International Herald Tribune, penning whip-smart fashion criticism and show reviews on a grueling schedule — usually with her trusty laptop in tow and always with her signature pompadour. The legendary, be-quiffed Menkes, has famously written nearly 2 million words for the publication during that time. Her columns will now appear on all the global Vogue websites, with the exception of the American edition and will have the title International Vogue Editor. “I am grateful to have spent 25 years at the International Herald Tribune - a newspaper where I had unstinting support in being able to express myself freely and honestly. I feel this is the perfect time to embrace a new challenge in the digital age,” said the the British-born fashion oracle.
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Luxury and Unrest

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film /  SUZY MENKES | Luxury and Unrest
director / Matt Dowson
starring / Suzy Menkes, Kevin McDonald
special appearance / Franco Lorenzi, Anna Wintour, Hilary Alexander, Hamish Bowles
music / Bob Powell - Arabian
screenplay /  Lycia Peterson
film running time / 00:04:39

Suzy Menkes - who turned 70 last Christmas Eve - is a fashion institution who has lent her just pen, unerring eye and British humor to the The Times of London, The Independent, The London Evening Standard and the Paris-based newspaper International Herald Tribune for the past 30 years. Although she is respected as a critic, her work is essentially as a reporter and analyst: scouting for new designers, following the growth of luxury markets and reflecting on changes in society.
BoF's Imran Amed sits down with the intrepid fashion critic Suzy Menkes to discuss her new job at Condé Nast International and some of her observations and memories from a career that spans more than 30 years. Please see the full video interview at BoF

Awarded an O.B.E by Her Majesty the Queen (Order of the British Empire) for her services to journalism in 2005, and made a Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur in France the same year, Suzy Menkes is an iconic fashion journalist who is held in the highest esteem by designers, models, fellow journalists and fashion followers around the globe.

Courtesy photo. Suzy Menkes and Karl Lagerfeld at IHT Heritage Luxury 2010

Madame Menkes also hosted an annual luxury conference for The International Herald Tribune and will spearhead a similar event for Condé Nast International in her new role. “It means being in tune with the modern world. Gone are the days when we could say “I’m a journalist, but I only write for print. Having said that, it’s not as if I’m taking my first steps in Internet journalism for Vogue,” she told HintMag. “I’ve been working online for years. I love paper, I love books, but I also love what’s going on around me. I think you need to be engaged with the times you’re living in. Just like in fashion, you have to be relevant.
She published her first fashion newspaper at the age of five – a one-time-only affair that her mother still owns to this day – but her first big scoop was an expose about Marianne Faithfull publicly smoking hash at Cambridge University, where she was the university newspaper’s first female editor. The story was picked up by all the major British tabloids, and no doubt gave Ms Menkes an addictive taste of her future life as a journalist.
  Courtesy photo. From left  Hilary Alexander, Anna Wintour and Suzy Menkes 

In her 20s, Madame Menkes was head-hunted by Charles Wintour (father of Anna) to write about fashion for the London Evening Standard, which caused a skirmish among other journalists at the time who thought she was too young and didn't deserve the promotion. He was a wonderful editor with a dry manner – definitely his daughter's father – I actually went to Anna's 21st birthday party, so I've known her for a very long time!
The first fashion show Suzy Menkes ever crashed was a must-see Karl Lagerfeld for Chloe collection held in Paris in the late 1960s. Not having an invitation, Menkes and a friend bought brooms and buckets at a hardware store, tied rags around their heads, and showed up at the venue at 5:00 the morning of, posing as cleaners. They hid under the stage for four hours until guests started arriving, then ditched the mops and rags and wandered out to catch the show. The perfect crime.

Courtesy photo of Karl Lagerfeld. Suzy Menkes photographed by Karl Lagerfeld

It's well known that Suzy Menkes does not accept gifts or fraternise too closely with designers, but this was still fascinating, considering how few people could honestly say this next sentence:
In all these 40 years I have never spent a night under a designer's roof. You can't get cosy with them. I never went on Valentino's boat even though I was asked... But I don't really have the bikini body for it anyway.Madame Menkes pulls no punches with her reviews: “I always have separated myself from my critiques of collections. My judgment is not about whether I would wear it - but how the collection stands in the lexicon of an established designer. As I am a maximalist, not a minimalist, I don't wear Armani or Celine - but I so appreciate what they have achieved.” Alber Elbaz, of Lanvin, said: When we designers do a good collection, Suzy is so happy for us, and when we do a bad one she seems almost to get angry.

IN MY FASHION: The Suzy Menkes Collection | Fine Art Auction

Courtesy photo. Suzy Menkes at Christie's, July 2013

LONDON JULY 2013 @ Christie's. Comprising 95 lots, the Suzy Menkes collection featured an inspiring array of dresses, coats, skirts, tops, jackets and accessories by a cross spectrum of the most revered names in fashion from Ossie Clark and Emilio Pucci, to Yves Saint Laurent and Christian Lacroix.
The star lot of the sale was an Yves Saint Laurent cocktail jacket from his 1980 collection 'le soleil'. Suzy Menkes noted: “I have never thrown anything out of my wardrobe since 1964. If I had a large open space in my home, I would dedicate it, like an art gallery, to my collection. But there is something sad about clothes laid in a tomb of trunks. They need to live again and this auction provides the opportunity for them to walk out in the sunshine, to dance the night away and to give someone else the joy that they gave to me.
Pat Frost, Director of Christie’s Fashion Department commented: “There are some people who seem to see further than others and Suzy Menkes is one of those. Whenever you speak to her – on the occasion of the Anna Piaggi and Daphne Guinness sales, for example – you always get something beyond the ordinary run of conversation. You can always rely on her to put a collection into context and see beyond the hype. I was therefore delighted when she told us she had decided to entrust Christie’s with the sale of her wardrobe, as I knew that this was not going to be a wardrobe full of fashionable black uniforms. As she says, clothes are like friends – in this case good friends who conjure up good times.

Courtesy photo Suzy Menkes

Among Madame Menkes's trademarks is her Pompadour. “The accessories that no one notices are my hair combs. They are the workmanship of Alexandre de Paris. Yet the "pompadour" was invented not by Alexandre but by Pauline Beard at John Frieda in London. My husband did not like my hair up, and I could not work with locks flopping in my face, so she used womanly intuition to create what has become my trademark. One comb holds up the pouf, and I can do the comb thing walking down stairs or along the street. I never meant it to be a lasting look, but like all inventions it seems to have always existed.

Change is good, Madame Menkes said in a statement about her move from Paris to London. It's what fashion is all about.We can live with that — as long as she never changes her hair.

Special Thanks, Credits and references:.

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