What is the role of fashion journalists as tastemakers?
What defines a professional fashion journalist today and how are they recognized? While I have demonstrated in Chapter Two the symbolic production of fashion journalists through fashion writing and how they uphold the fashion industry’s values through this, there are additional essential factors grounded in the embodied role of the fashion journalist. This chapter will engage with Bolter and Grusin’s concept of remediation as well as Rocamora’s work with an emphasis on the fashion media. Furthermore, I will analyze the persona of the redefined fashion journalist on the basis of the work of Lantz and her definition of cultural intermediaries and tastemakers. Exemplified through Pandora Sykes, I will outline the complex three-part role of fashion journalists and the tropes of “entrepreneurial femininity” as addressed by Duffy and Hund.
In addition to incorporating facts within an article, Sykes’ writing also reflects the importance of a feature having a peg and an angle. While the former refers to the topicality of the story, by highlighting why “the reader should be interested in this issue now” the latter links to a question, an overall idea, seen in Sykes’ stand-first “Is the fashion industry finally recognizing a less binary version of diversity?”. In this context, already being crucial elements of fashion writing in print, peg and angle remain important when it comes to writing for online.