Fashion blogs vs fashion mags

The Budget Fashionista wonders whether SJP’s appearance on Oprah will be enough to overcome the bad blog buzz that Steve and Barry’s has made over its cease-and-desist letters. Um, yeah. It’s Oprah. Oprah says “fart” and middle America fills up with methane fumes. I think it’s safe to say that she’ll reach more people than blogs will.
While I do think that weblogs are challenging traditional access to the fashion world, I don’t think they’re changing it completely. Like it or not, blogs don’t have the authority or aspirational aspect that print magazines do. Things are changing—and I think good, insidery sites such as Fashionista are a sign of this—but when you try to pull a “Don’t you know who I am?” as one Coutorture-affiliated site did at the 3.1 show in February, it’s pretty clear that traditional media are still seen as more important.

That said, I think print mags have been approaching the web all wrong–basically, putting a tiny “for more, go online!” at the ends of their stories–but this is changing. Teen Vogue and Glamour both have great staff-written blogs, which not only allows these magazines to stay relevant in a digital world, it also has the potential of crushing much of the competition. I think it’ll be interesting to see where the ad dollars and readership go over the next few years, particularly as Conde Nast ramps up its online content. My prediction: Print-affiliated sites will dominate, but the actual magazines will die if they don’t freshen up their content.


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