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The Fashion World According to Beyoncé

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Beyoncé’s seventh album Renaissance dropped last week, sparking a million-and-one thinkpieces and analyses. We’re no music critics, but we do think the album rollout offers an interesting view into what’s in and what the culture cares about. While the record has been called a celebration of club music and its origins, fashion still manages to worm its way into the lyrics.

In “Heated” she sings “Got a lot of bands/ Got a lot of Chanel on me,” later adding, “Got a lot of style/ Got a lot of Tiffany on me.” Name-dropping luxury labels as a shorthand signifier of wealth and status isn’t anything new, of course — on the album’s closer “Summer Renaissance” she calls out “Versace, Bottega, Prada, Balenciaga, Vuitton, Dior, Givenchy” in quick succession, brands that are now part of our pop culture canon. No matter where in the world you live, you’re likely familiar with those names. If you don’t know who the creative designer is, you understand what they represent: luxury, taste, celebrity, Fashion (yes, italicized and with a capital F).

There’s a visual component to the album, too, and since this is Beyoncé we’re talking about, it’s almost as important as the music itself, but the imagery tells a slightly different story than the songs. The photos offer insight into her own taste, and perhaps more significantly, into what the culture understands as conveying forward-looking style today. The striking ornate chrome bodysuit Beyoncé wears on the cover of the album is not from a luxury label, but is made by the Florida-born and Los Angeles-based artist Nusi Quero. She also enlisted Giannina Azar and Natalia Fedner, a couple of new names for us here at Vogue, to craft the body chains that have become emblematic of this new visual persona.

Red carpet mainstays Gucci and Dolce & Gabbana are in the mix, but so are the emerging star Christopher John Rogers, and the Paris houses of Schiaparelli and Alaïa, which have recently been revived by the creative directors Daniel Roseberry and Pieter Mulier. CJR, Schiap, and Alaia have become shorthand for an “if you know, you know” buzzy new energy; their visual lexicon synonymous with today’s most fashion-forward It-girls and celebrities. Beyoncé has repeatedly worn Schiaparelli since Roseberry’s 2019 debut and has also been seen wearing Christopher John Rogers.



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Lifestyle

A favor de las relaciones que se quedan 10 por ciento cortas

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En su departamento, se sentó frente al piano y empezó a tocar. Yo lo miraba desde el sofá, oscilando entre la expectación y el terror.

Las conversaciones del día me habían convencido de nuestra compatibilidad —los dos queríamos una vida de viajes con niños aventureros a nuestros pies—, pero sabía que en cuestión de segundos nuestras fantasías mutuas darían paso a la realidad de la piel y el aliento. Recé para que nuestro primer contacto fuera eléctrico. Yo no necesitaba fuegos artificiales para empezar una relación, pero de pronto temí que él sí.

Al día siguiente, tumbados en la cama con las piernas entrelazadas, me dijo que se sentía ansioso. Después de una primera cita tan perfecta como la nuestra, esperaba sentirse eufórico, pero en cambio percibía una vacilación inexplicable. Necesitaba tiempo para pensar.

El rechazo llegó una semana después, a través de un correo electrónico escrito con ternura. Nuestra relación se sentía 90 por ciento bien, tan bien como para enamorarse, pero tan mal como para no durar. Debíamos ponerle fin antes de que la inevitable ruptura se hiciera más difícil. No es que hubiera incompatibilidades flagrantes, y él nunca había experimentado una conexión intelectual tan poderosa como la nuestra, pero faltaba algo.

Leí el correo electrónico en la cama, agradecida de que no hubiera ningún policía que me viera llorar. Cuando se me secaron las lágrimas, me hundí en la almohada, cerré los ojos y me invadió la convicción de que todo este asunto del sentimiento perdido era una estafa o, en el mejor de los casos, una excusa educada, un modo irreprochable de terminar las cosas.

Hay un cuento sufí que me encanta sobre el sabio tonto, el mulá Nasreddin. Dice así: Había caído la oscuridad y Nasreddin había perdido sus llaves. Se arrodilló junto a una farola, buscando. Un amigo se unió a él y, tras un largo rato, le preguntó: “¿Dónde has perdido exactamente las llaves?”. “En mi casa”, contestó Nasreddin. El amigo dijo: “¿Qué? ¿En tu casa? ¿Por qué estamos buscando aquí?”. A lo que Nasreddin respondió: “Aquí hay más luz”.

Los tres únicos hombres con los que había imaginado un futuro me decían que faltaba algo, y yo había dejado que sus palabras me persiguieran durante años, rebuscando en mis recuerdos de nosotros en busca de defectos. Pero tal vez su búsqueda de un sentimiento ausente era un poco como la búsqueda inútil de Nasreddin: buscaban una relación para llenar un vacío emocional en lugar de buscar dentro de sí mismos.

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Day 3: Ice Skating in Style

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It started with Kristi Yamaguchi. My parents took me to see her in Stars on Ice when I was 7 and, from the moment her blades hit the ice, I was enchanted. After years of loving figure skating from afar, last winter I signed up for adult beginner classes at one of New York’s many public skating rinks: the LeFrak Center in Prospect Park. I’m still no Tessa Virtue, but I can reliably move both forward and backward now — wobbling, yes, but mostly without falling over. “It can be hard to keep your seen-it-all-before, New York cool while flat on your back(side), of course,” Emily Ludolph writes in this look at skating across the decades. “But it is the indomitable city spirit that gets us back on our feet and ready for more.”

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Inside Biden’s State Dinner: Hot Dog Talk and a Party That Lasted Until 1 A.M.

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No, this is not relatable to the rest of the country, or even to those who operate just beyond the privileged confines of a crowded white tent on the South Lawn.

But the human impulse to gather — particularly after the worst part of a lengthy pandemic — is universal. Officials who planned the event said the need for Mr. Biden and Mr. Macron to project a united front against the Russian invasion of Ukraine was urgent.

“The magnificence of American soft power was on full display,” Mr. Gifford said. “These personal relationships are such the crux of American foreign policy, and that’s why these matter so much.”

Mr. Gifford watched members of the French delegation closely to make sure they were enjoying themselves — and, crucially, the food, which included a selection of American cheeses and triple-cooked butter potatoes.

“The plates were empty, the glasses were empty,” he reported. In other words, none of the French pointed out that the brut rosé and chardonnay on offer was, after all, “American wine,” as the French ambassador did at the state dinner hosted by the Clintons in 1996.

As America’s old alliance was carefully nursed, flashes of bipartisanship that would perhaps surprise the more tribe-minded supporters of lawmakers appeared. Representative Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland, the No. 2 Democrat, approached Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the California Republican who is attempting to become the next House speaker, to shake hands. That happened more than once.

A senior White House official, who spoke anonymously to describe private conversations, said that conversations with Republicans were kept light — talk of sports took the place of more contentious topics including, say, looming oversight investigations. Guests were discouraged from working the room because of protocol reasons, an attendee said, so it became hard to get a good look at who was doing what.

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