Some think of her as the devil of fashion. Others respect her for her abundance of high-fashion knowledge. Anna Wintour is the editor-in-chief of Vogue, a position that she has held since 1988. She has become a world-wide known fashion icon in today’s world. She is known for her pageboy bob haircut and trademark sunglasses, always sitting in the front row of almost every fashion show. Away from the cameras, Wintour has become as much an institution in the fashion world as her magazine. Universally hailed for her keen eye for fashion trends and support for younger designers, her aloof and demanding persona has earned her the nickname of “Nuclear Wintour”. A former personal assistant, Lauren Weisberger wrote the bestseller The Devil Wears Prada in 2003. It was later turned into a hit film, starring Meryl Streep as Miranda Priestly, a fashion editor widely believed to portray Anna Wintour.
Anna Wintour, through the years, has become one of the most powerful people in fashion, setting trends and anointing new designers. She has worked behind the scenes to encourage fashion houses to hire younger, fresher designers such as John Galliano, who owes his position at Christian Dior to her intervention. She persuaded Donald Trump to let Marc Jacobs use a ballroom at the Plaza Hotel for a show when he and his partner were short of cash. That is mostly how Marc Jacobs became widely known throughout the world. She is also said to have helped Alexander McQueen rise to be a famous designer. Wintour helped raise money for the Twin Towers fund after the September 11th terror attacks. With the Council of Fashion Designers of America, she helped create a new fund to encourage and support up-and-coming designers.
Like her image, Wintour’s daily regime is legendary. She wakes up at 5:45 am every morning, plays tennis for an hour before being professionally made-up, coiffed and chauffeured to the offices of Vogue in New York City. Though one of New York’s most prolific party throwers, she never stays at any one event for more than twenty minutes, preferring to be in bed by 10:00 pm.
Anna Wintour announced in 2006 plans to allow a documentary film to be made of the behind-the-scenes work on Vogue’s September issue. Perhaps for the first time, audiences will get a glimpse of the real Anna Wintour in action. But no matter what her reputation becomes, she will always be known as an influential force in the world of fashion.