U.S. Harper's Bazaar editor-in-chief Glenda Bailey is to be awarded the French Legion d'honneur during this upcoming Paris Fashion Week. The award will be presented to her by Alber Elbaz on October 3 in Paris. The Legion d'honneur (or Ordre national de la Légion d'honneur by its proper name) is France's highest civic honour and they don't give it to just anybody. Past recipients include war heros, scientists, inventors, captains of industry and such fashion luminaries as Azzedine Alaia, Cecil Beaton and Bill Cunningham. So, what exactly do you suppose earned Ms. Bailey this lofty distinction?
Perhaps it's that time she turned over full editorial control of her magazine to Estee Lauder (a major advertiser) so that they could more effectively "communicate" about their products (See the July 2008 issue)? Or maybe it was the cringe-inducing feature on Sting and Trudie Styler's sex life complete with a graphic Terry Richardson photo shoot that did it (See the February 2011issue)? Or, maybe it was the cast of Jersey Shore in all their glory waxing poetic on (of all subjects) etiquette (See the April 2010 issue)? Or, perhaps its the entire body of her work that is being lauded by the French state?
Whatever the reasons that inspired the French to bestow this accolade on Ms. Bailey, the important thing is that her tireless work to elevate Harper's Bazaar in particular and fashion media generally doesn't go unrewarded. Congratulations Ms. Bailey. Your race to the trashy bottom of fashion media deserves to be acknowledged.
The Luxe Chronicles