Fired Vogue Director Gets Extremely Candid About Fashion Industry

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Lucinda Chambers

"I never felt I led a Vogue-y kind of life," recalls Lucinda Chambers.

Lucinda Chambers, British Vogue's longtime fashion director, announced in May she would be stepping down after 36 years with the publication. The move came five months after editor-in-chief Alexandra Shulman announced her departure. 

Though it seemed like Chambers resigned on her own accord, that wasn't the case. In a brutally honest interview with Vestoj, an annual academic fashion journal founded by editor-in-chief Anja Aronowsky Cronberg in 2009, Chambers said she was fired by British Vogue's new EIC, Edward Enninful.

"A month and a half ago I was fired from Vogue. It took them three minutes to do it. No one in the building knew it was going to happen," said Chambers. "No one knew, except the man who did it — the new editor."

Chambers also revealed that she hasn't read Vogue in years. "Maybe I was too close to it after working there for so long, but I never felt I led a Vogue-y kind of life," she confessed. "The clothes are just irrelevant for most people — so ridiculously expensive."

Chambers wasn't afraid to admit that some of her work was "really crappy," noting that the June cover with Alexa Chung "in a stupid Michael Kors T-shirt is crap." She caved, however, due to the designer being a big advertiser. "I knew it was cheesy when I was doing it, and I did it anyway," she said.

Chambers continued: "Fashion moves like a shoal of fish; it’s cyclical and reactionary. Nobody can stay relevant for a lifetime — you always have peaks and troughs."

The interview was posted on Monday, during Paris Couture Week, before it was temporarily removed from Vestoj's website. The post has since returned with an editor's note.

"Most people who leave Vogue end up feeling that they’re lesser than, and the fact is that you’re never bigger than the company you work for," said Chambers. "But I have a new idea now, and if it comes off maybe I won’t be feeling so vulnerable after all. We’ll have to wait and see."