Sunday 17 December 2017

Six things you need to know about Porter, Vogue's new glossy rival

Here is a six-point digest of Porter,'s magazine available in Ireland

Porter,'s magazine
Porter,'s magazine

Here is a six-point digest of what really jumped out on our first look at Porter .

1. The cover

Shot by Dutch photographers Inez & Vinoodh, this warm portrait of Gisele represents a) a top name to have on your inaugural cover and b) an appropriate lead-in to the very domestic profile piece inside (sample quote: "I wish for all women to realize how special and unique they are").

Yeomans says of the cover: "They delivered Gisele way beyond my expectations… the word 'feel' on that coverline is so important".) We're feeling the fact you can see Gisele's freckles - and even her crow's feet.

2. The spelling

Did Gisele just say "realize"? Isn't this an English magazine? So why's it in American? Well, because Porter will go on sale in so many countries at once, the editorial team has made the decision to go for American English - with its flagrant disregard for 'u's after 'o's.

3. The words - once you've got over the fact they're in American

They're pretty good! Here a few of the best quotes.

"Just remember that everyone has a camera in their pocket. Whether you are famous or anonymous, don't take chances. Leave the house with good hair" - Carol Radziwill, Is Mystery Dead?

"Back then he didn't have the white wig. He was pretty laid-back" - David Bailey recalls Andy Warhol.

"No, I like a book" - Victoria Beckham, when asked if she uses a Kindle.

"I remember waking up in America and being fed something called Fruit Loops. I thought, 'This is strange, who eats these sugary colorful things for breakfast?" - Dasha Zhukhova on moving from Russia to Texas as a child.

"I rang John Varley [then group chief executive of Barclays] and said 'Hi, do you need some money'?" - Amanda Staveley, who brokered a £3.5 billion bailout of Barclays bank in 2008, for which she received a £30 million commission.

"If Rande [her husband] is making turkey meatballs, pasta and spinach salad I will have everything but the pasta" - Cindy Crawford on her diet regime.

4. The pictures

Whether of Gisele, Uma Thurman, or others, a lot of the shoots concentrate on presenting a warmer, more intimate vision of their subjects. That's because, as Natalie Massenet says, "you can no longer just have a magazine that shows you this glossy impervious image of women - in the studio, artificial, wearing a push-up bra.

This is a magazine for the post-Instagram generation. And what we are seeing is that reality is a thousand times more beautiful than anything."

5. The "shopability" - and the international pricing

The first digital edition of Porter will be available for download from Valentine's Day at Apple Newsstand and Google Play. Prices vary from country to country - but Porter promises it will be fully and seamlessly shopable. Many of the 260 brands featured will be sold via Net-A-Porter, but there is a fair bit of product that lives outside that NAP ecosystem; to find that, you can contact the magazine's 24/7 concierge service.

6. The politics

Most orthodox fashion magazines wouldn't feature a rival editor in their pages for love or money. But in Porter , the editor-in-chief of US Vogue , Anna Wintour, makes two appearances - and even gets a picture. Wintour's first mention is on page 46, as an aside in a piece lamenting the decline of mystery in a social media age.

She pops up again on page 202 - with a picture across the spread - when she is praised in a piece on sisterly support networks for her work with Hillary Clinton. Just as Porter is featuring brands not stocked by Net-A-Porter to prove that it is a "proper" fashion magazine that's not entirely dictated by marketing, this inclusion of Wintour is - perhaps - a (hopeful) attempt to pacify America's most powerful and influential editor as she assesses the impact of this new rival on the newsstands.

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