Diane Von Furstenberg once referred to Diana Vreeland as the very first blogger + no book best illustrates this idea than ‘Memos: The Vogue Years | Diana Vreeland‘ (Rizzoli New York), compiled + published by her grandson Alexander Greeland.
(cover photo by David Bailey)
If you think about it, Diana’s memos could be compared to today’s blog posts, yet, no one can compare to her genius, quick wit, experience, colorful imagery + simple fabulousness, + don’t get me started on her enviable list of friends! The memos were solicited by Diana’s grandson from people who had worked closely with her including Grace Mirabella + Pilar Crespi, daughter of Consuelo Crespi. Of the 2,000 collected, he managed to share 300 memos in the book. Even Bergdorf Goodman has weighed in on her grandiosity by dedicating several windows to the book as seen below.
Much to the surprise of Alexander, a lot of people had discarded many of Vreeland’s’ memos, to which he doesn’t understand why. Alexander told WWD, ‘“They show how to work with creative people, how to manage creative people.’ Then again, not too many creatives like to be told their way is not the right way of doing something. But who wouldn’t have wanted to be told what to do by D.V., who Alexander wants to point out, made people do things through encouragement + not by being a bitch?
Surprisingly, all of D.V.’s memos were dictated from her Park Avenue apartment, every morning, as she did not know how to type. Those sent to staff members were never seen, but, for letters, she would make whatever corrections by hand, in her unique handwriting seen below.
Each chapter of memos will have an introduction of commentary by VOGUE editors she worked with, providing a true insider’s look into Diana’s management style. Rather than having meetings, brainstorming, or consensus, D.V. preferred to address her staff, photographers, designers + writers directly, through one-on-one conversations + daily correspondence, which had the great stylings of a typical manager in today’s age of ‘dot.coms’, with the corporate structure being defiled + transformed, on a daily basis.
If like me, you love all things Vreeland, pick up a copy – I’m sure the lessons learned within each + every syllable, will me incomparable + immeasurable.