By Fiona Raleigh

August 31st marks the start of the fashion world’s New Year and the start of new, sartorial beginnings. September is the fashionista’s January and resolutions must be made. We have to say goodbye to the ubiquitous summer playsuit and start afresh with a shearling aviator jacket for the ensuing colder months.

To inform us of the trends for the autumn/winter season is the legendary September issue of Vogue. After the record-breaking 2007 US September issue of Vogue which contained 840 pages, weighed 5 lbs and became the subject of R.J. Cutler’s 2009 documentary The September Issue, it must be a daunting prospect to produce something of the same calibre year after year. So, how did the British September 2010 issue fare against its historic rivals?

In my opinion, not too great. If you were to take a brief glance at this September’s cover, I doubt that you’d realise it was the much-anticipated September issue.  Such an important month in the fashion calendar should have a cover that immediately grabs your eye and gets you excited about the treasured knowledge that lies within. This cover, unfortunately, falls a little short of that. Whilst elegant and classy, there is nothing to suggest that any creative thought has gone into this front cover at all. The choice of model, for example, is even slightly lazy – Kate Moss on the cover of the September issue of Vogue? Not the most original idea I’ve ever heard. In the last five years Ms. Moss has graced Vogue’s front page no fewer than 12 times and one third of those covers has been the September issue.

So, does the inside get any better? Thankfully, yes! The cover stories, such as the coats special, felt a little bit lacklustre and un-special, but as I turned the pages and got to the heart of this issue, my faith in Vogue was restored. This September issue seems to be an interesting mix of old and new – it embraces and explores the new trends and talent, whilst maintaining some more classic (or safe?) elements like ‘The Moss Factor’, photographed by the renowned Patrick Demarchelier, that cannot fail to look amazing.

At this point in time, Vogue seems to be on the fence about whether to go all the way and produce something cutting-edge and fresh, or to take the safe path and stick to the classics that it knows will work. For what it’s worth, I think Vogue should step out of its comfort zone and present us with something creative, edgy and inspiring. After all, change is what the New Year is all about, isn’t it?

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