Is there trouble in Vogue world? According to the Daily Beast, there may be some tension brewing between editor-in-chief Anna Wintour and her protégé, Edward Enninful, the editor of British Vogue.
Enninful first arrived at Vogue in 2006 to work under Wintour and Grace Coddington as a contributing editor. In recent years, he and Wintour have been working to rearrange and streamline Vogue’s European editions. Since taking over British Vogue in 2017 as the first Black editor in the publication’s 106-year history, Enninful has solidified his branch of the fashion empire as one to be reckoned with. Under his supervision, and thanks to his lofty network of mononymous celebrities who have graced the cover of his magazine (the list of friends he gave the New York Times to contact for a recent article consisted of Beyoncé, Rihanna, Naomi, Iman, and Oprah), he’s given American Vogue a run for its money.
It’s been long rumored that Enninful could be next in line for Wintour’s role at Vogue, one that she has held since 1988. And according to the Daily Beast, it sounds like he might have his eye on the position: Its sources claim he believes he can “do a better job than Wintour” at the helm of Vogue. And while the fashion world is always going to gossip, Enninful was notably absent at Vogue World earlier this month.
In previous years, the relationship between Wintour and Enninful seemed relatively harmonious, at least by the standards of the industry. Yet in Enninful’s recent memoir, A Visible Man, he writes that after arriving at Vogue, “it was hard not to feel creatively stifled in those years,” noting that Wintour had an unofficial list of mostly non-Black models she was looking to bolster. Enninful has become known for highlighting Black women: His first September cover for British Vogue featured Rihanna, the first time a Black woman had appeared on the magazine’s blockbuster issue. Under previous leadership, only five covers out of hundreds had featured Black models.
“She brought me there because she knew that I will push,” he told the Times of Wintour. “She likes people who push back.”
Meanwhile, it sounds like Wintour has no plan to leave her position anytime soon. “I always focus on the present,” she told Maureen Dowd when asked if she could see Enninful taking her place.
For his part, Enninful’s official comment to Dowd on the matter left the door open. “I’m happy working in Europe,” he said. “But you never know what the future holds.”