Japanese Vogue fashion director Anna Dello Russo gets more famous by the day. And good for her, because this is a woman who has worked very hard for decades to succeed in this industry. She’s also been working hard her whole life to look like a fashion person, which not all fashion people do. Few do it better than her, and she proves in W’s November issue that it’s not just about having the means to amass 4,000 pairs of designer shoes and a separate apartment for clothes alone, but also about fearless devotion to personal styling at any costs.
In high school, she once wore a pair of yellow shoes that her cat had used as a litter box the night before — they were part of her all-yellow planned outfit, so she just rinsed them out. “But it got hot in the classroom, and there was this terrible stink of cat pee,” she remembers. “I had to confess because I didn’t want anyone thinking I had peed in my pants. They all screamed, ‘Couldn’t you have changed your shoes?’”
Juergen Teller shot Dello Russo for W in her apartment in Milan in looks that showcase her spectacular figure, which she attains by swimming and doing yoga for three hours every morning, not drinking alcohol, and eating healthfully. Her apartment, in fact, contains no kitchen since she had to basically do away with it for closet space. What she does call her kitchen is “the size of a drinks cabinet,” according to W, with “fingerprint-less cupboards” stocking only sunflower seeds and San Pellegrino. But that’s not how you really know Dello Russo’s a fashion person. Lots of people work out obsessively, don’t keep food in the house, and wear things cats have peed on. You know Dello Russo’s a fashion person because she wears fur stiletto boots with her bathing suit.