I’m sure you’ve all seen the news by now but I thought it was time to weigh in myself, or merely comment. Alexandra Shulman is leaving her position as Editor-in-Chief of British Vogue after 25 years, the longest tenure of any editor thus far. She cites the desire for a different kind of life after all of the time at the top. It makes sense & also rules out any other possible career moves people may speculate about.
Honestly, I love British Vogue. Maybe it’s because it’s the magazine that I grew up reading or maybe it’s because I’m from there, but it is my favourite edition of Vogue to actually sit down and look through in detail. I don’t think I can do that with any other editions (often for language barriers or, in terms of American Vogue, readership age/target market). I am also confident that the magazine will not crumble without Shulman there to lead. The team is fantastic. That’s what makes the magazine so good. Julia Hobbs, Sarah Harris, Naomi Smart, Lucinda Chambers, Ellie Pithers – I could really just list the entire masthead – are all so talented.
The timing of Shulman’s departure makes sense, logically. Firstly, 25 years, a quarter of a century, is a hell of a long time to be in one job, especially such a high profile, high responsibility role. Secondly, she has achieved so much in the last year that it would seem like nothing could ever top it. The British Vogue centenary celebrations went well (slight understatement), culminating in a party, festival, and portraiture exhibition featuring the most coveted cover star, the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton. There was also a documentary covering the time period released on BBC2 at the tail end of 2016. In terms of going out on a high, Shulman is soaring.
I wish her all the best in whatever she chooses to pursue going forward and I excitedly wait the announcement of her successor. I don’t even know who it could be, but I really do hope it is an internal promotion. The Vogue staffers deserve it.